A new mystery to chill the bones-from the Edgar(r) Award-winning author of Unnatural Selection.
When forensics professor Gideon Oliver joins an Amazon riverboat expedition with a group of research botanists, he expects a nice vacation. What he gets is heat, corrupt officials, dangerous insects and animals-and worse.
As they travel upriver, one of the botanists is killed by a deranged passenger who leaps overboard and flees into the darkness. No one can explain why. Theories begin to simmer, and stories of long-past, half-forgotten grudges-and new ones as well-boil to the surface.
Only when a fresh skeleton turns up in the river, scoured to the bone by voracious piranhas, does Gideon realize that in this jungle full of predators, humans may be the deadliest of all.
Forensics anthropologist Gideon Oliver's compelling 14th adventure (after 2006's Unnatural Selection) involves a hot, humid and decidedly deadly expedition up the Amazon River with his friends Phil Boyajian, who heads a budget travel agency, and FBI agent John Lau. While Phil rates the boat's amenities, Gideon and John marvel at the natural wonders. But before long, they pick up on tension among the other passengers, who include world-famous ethnobotanist Arden Scofield and two of his colleagues--a ghostwriter and a bug researcher--plus a mysterious guide known only as Cisco. As the travelers go deep into the jungle, fearful of the rarely seen Chayacuro headhunters, Gideon and his pals find themselves in the middle of a decades-old blood feud, along with drug smuggling, greed and murder. Edgar-winner Elkins delivers fascinating descriptions of the Amazon and a satisfying denouement, courtesy of Gideon's characteristically astute analysis of human remains. (June)
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June 05, 2007
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