2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Faye Longchamp hates what her meager means have led her to. An assistant at an archeological dig by day, she behaves like a pothunter at night, digging for any artifact she can find and sell. Always on her mind is the need to pay the property taxes on her ancestral home. One valuable item is all that separates her from keeping her property safe for another year.
One evening's dig turns up a skull. Intrigued by this unexpected find, Faye takes an earring and begins to look into local stories of missing girls.
The next morning, Faye arrives at the dig site to find two students missing. When things begin not to add up, Faye gets concerned. When their bodies are found, the dig shuts down. How can Faye earn much needed money now?
Meanwhile, Faye is on a quest to gain back the rest of her ancestral lands. And there's another pothunter loose in her neck of the woods. Will he ruin a good site? Will his digging get her arrested for her illegal work as well?
This book is very literary in style and not like the mysteries I'm used to reading. As such, I started to get very frustrated with it. The story had too many threads and the cast of characters was a little hard to keep straight. Furthermore, Faye's questionable morals also rankled me. But as the story progressed, I began to sort things out and got hooked. The plot may have bitten off one or two sub-plots more then it really needed, but they all come together well. Faye grew into a character I couldn't help but love. And I just couldn't put the book down when I reached the climax.
I'm glad I stuck it out and finish the book. It was well worth the time and energy invested in it. I will most certainly be getting the next one.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 4 March 2009
Archaeology student Faye Longchamp is struggling to keep her ancestrail home of Joyeuse on Florida's northern gulf coast by illegally digging up artifacts on federal lands and selling them on the black market. However, one day she unearths a human skull and it doesn't look like it's been in the ground for a couple hundred years, more like only three or four decades, so it's not fresh, but not an artifact either, and judging by the head wound, this woman met a violent end. She decides to try and find out who the dead woman was on her own, as she can hardly go to the police and confess that she'd found the skull by illegally pot-hunting.
Then the next day two students on a legitimate dig she'd been working on wind up missing, then their bodies are found in shallow graves and she has to wonder if their deaths are tied in with her own dead person. And, of course, there is a very bad guy out there who wants to keep this all quiet, so Faye is in a spot of trouble.
ARTIFACTS won the Benjamin Franklin Award for Excellence in Mystery and it is easy to see why. This is a story that will keep any mystery buff glued to his chair till the reading is finished. A darned good debut, one you won't be able to put down, that what this book is.