Synopses & Reviews
Meet ten-year-old Bones, whose playground is the Florida swamps, brimming with mystical witches, black bears, alligators and bobcats. Bones' father, Nolay, a Miccosukee Indian, is smart and mischievous. Her Mama, practical as corn bread, can see straight into Bones' soul.
It's summer, and Bones is busy hunting and fishing with her best friend, Little Man. But then two Yankee real estate agents trespass on her family's land, and Nolay scares them off with his gun. When a storm blows in and Bones and Little Man uncover something horrible at the edge of the Loo-chee swamp, the evidence of foul play points to Nolay. The only person that can help Nolay is Sheriff LeRoy, who's as slow as pond water. Bones is determined to take matters into her own hands. If it takes a miracle, then a miracle is what she will deliver.
"Ashley-Hollinger's debut is saturated with rich, authentic images drawn from her childhood in Florida. In 1949, 10-year-old Bones; her spirited and unpredictable father, Nolay; and her pragmatic mother live an idyllic life on the edge of the Everglades who needs electricity when you have a house full of animals (including a pet pig and raccoon), a protective best friend, and a mysterious swamp to explore? When two Yankee men attempt to buy the family's land, Nolay, who is part Miccosukee Indian, threatens them; soon after, one of the men and a neighbor are found murdered, and Nolay is the prime suspect. Bones starts questioning her father's character and investigating on her own. The author is perhaps a bit too fond of ending chapters with portentous lines to drive the story forward ('Answers to all my questions were laying right around the corner, but they wouldn't be the ones I wanted to hear'), but that's a quibble in a bighearted, gracefully written, and atmospheric mystery. It's Bones's narrative voice, folksy and true, that gives this story its heart. Ages 9 12. Agent: Catherine Drayton, InkWell Management." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
MIKA ASHLEY-HOLLINGER grew up in the Florida swamps in the tiny community of Micco and now lives in Hawaii where she runs an exotic plants landscaping business. This is her first novel.