"The Deadly Canyon" by Jake Page is a good mystery about conspiracy,smuggling and murder. Mo Bowdre, a blind sculptor from Santa Fe, NM, was commissioned to do a piece for a scientific research center, thirty miles from the border of Mexico in the Peloncillos mountains, NM. Mo was accompanied by his half Hopi Indian lady friend, Connie Barnes, who was his spiritual connection, lover and eyes. Mo has a sixth sense for trouble and a simple and sure way for detection. His loss of one sense has greatly enhanced others which proves that he is a complete man. The commission was organized by the FBI. An agent for the FBI was killed while working out of the facility and they wanted an inside man to gather information about the scientists and everything he could. Mo and Connie fit in the research center well, making friends and getting comfortable with the site. Another body was discovered in Skeleton Canyon, A Mexican lady scientist was found at the bottom of the canyon, her death was ruled accidental but Mo had other ideas.
SPOILER: There was a smuggling ring at the center. Aztec artifacts and gold statues were being processed through the center from Mexico and the head scientist was the ring leader. After telling the sheriff the stories that Mo developed in his mind, four people; Mo, Connie, a guide and a deputy, headed to the canyon where the smuggling was to take place. They were on a simple camping trip, but the Sheriff was waiting for an arrest near by. They pitched their tents and waited. That night after dark, gunfire erupted striking the tents. Everyone was hiding in the surrounding bush and escaped the onslaught of the bullets. The bad scientists were captured, Mo was shot in the side trying to apprehend one who was fleeing, not life threatening, and all worked out as planned.
Page has done a great job with this book. He is right up there with Hillerman and James Doss, with the American Indian and their ways and thoughts. Mo Bowdre finished the scuplure and it was presented to the science research center with a big fanfare. I am looking forward to another adventure of Mo Bowdre, his wit and detection along with humor, are always welcome.