I'm also working with the artist on the cover, which will feature the namesake Salado relic backed by a landscape view from the pass near the ancient ruins from which it came.
The inset photo shows Kings Crown Peak from the west; the site of the ruin and the murder in the story is just behind this peak on the headwaters of Queen Creek.
The story line includes solving two murders in two states, plus an attempted murder, as well as trying to identify a major artifact theft ring. It also involves the marriage of Deputy Manny Sanchez and Jenny Mondragon, a blooming romance of tough-girl Deputy Haley, and a reappearance of two old charcters, Alf Hesse and Richard.
This weekend I participated in manning the Oak Tree Press booth at the Tucson Festival of Books, along with the publisher, Billie Johnson, and five of my fellow Oak Tree authors. Oak Tree is a small tradtional publisher with over 400 authors publishing and around 260 actively writing. We had a nice selection of books for sale, and lots of literature to hand out about our books and the company. As always it was fun to talk with readers about my books, as well as other books the publisher had to offer. It was great to meet Billie in person, she and I have corresponded for over a year, but had never met. The same was true for Authors Amy Bennett, Robert Richter, Carolyn Niethammer, Diane Ransdell, and Janet Greger; I got some good ideas from them about all aspects of writing, publishing, marketing, and surviving the grind.
The Tucson Book Festival is one of the largest in the US and had over 400 booths, plus several concert, lecture, and media venues from tents to halls, and big name authors like Dave Barry, Clive Custler, J.A. Jance, Leonard Pitts, and many others. There were food booths (expensive) and Cuisine Booths (very expensive), and four or more concerts going in diferent spots at the same time. An exciting event, but it really took a toll on me; I'm getting too old for this stuff! It is nice to see so many people are interested in books.