***2011 Spur Award Finalist, Best Western Long Novel Maggie Foltz is a fifty-five-year-old cocktail waitress in a rundown casino in the southern Nevada Mojave Desert. She spends her days serving drinks to lonely old folks playing the slot machines and her nights trying to escape her bitter past. When she befriends Sarah, a young Native American woman who is hired to cook in the casino coffee shop, her life begins to change. Maggie finds herself falling in love with a memory-haunted Vietnam veteran and warily begins to hope that together they can find peace. Then Sarah is mysteriously murdered, and Sarah' s ghost enlists Maggie to accompany her on a quest for the wisdom that she needs in order to move into the next world. The story ranges from smoky casinos into the harsh magnificence of the desert and the reservation where Sarah' s people are trying to preserve their culture and find their own place in a modern world that seems to want them to be either shamans or losers. Sojourner' s characters are compellingly real, and the Mojave setting has rarely been depicted as sensitively or truthfully. This is a memorable story of love, redemption, and solace, told by one of the West' s finest writers.
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"Narrator Andrea Gallo creates uniqueÑalmost familiarÑvoices for the many characters of Creosote, Nevada. Middle-aged Maggie Fotz is waitressing at the Crystal Casino, where she meets Sarah, a member of the Willow tribe. Maggie is such a grounded individual that sheÕs quite unsure of how to help Sarah, though she desperately wants to. Then, Sarah is brutally murdered. Gallo brings Sojourner's well-developed characters to life with humor and pathos. She adds verisimilitude and drama to Sarah's ethereal journey to next world. The combination of mystery and mysticism is engaging, and Gallo's empathy with both Sarah and Maggie comes through to listeners. S.C.A. © AudioFile 2014, Portland, Maine"
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