Recent books showcase Montana authors and settings

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‘Stalking Midas’

By Debbie Burke

Charming con artist Cassandra Maza has cornered her prey, Moe Rosenbaum, an addled millionaire with nine cats, until investigator Tawny Lindholm disrupts the scam. Tawny suspects elder fraud and won’t stop digging until she finds the truth. Cassandra can’t allow that. She’s killed before and each time it’s easier. Tawny will be next.

What reviewers are saying:

“Stalking Midas is strong on characterization and witty banter with a chilling villain in a ripped from the headlines compelling plot. A real page turner.” — Jordan Dane, critically acclaimed bestselling author of the Sweet Justice Series

“Debbie Burke touches all the right bases in her new novel, Stalking Midas, set in Northwestern Montana’s Flathead Valley during a biting winter you can feel in every scene. A special treat for thriller readers, indeed.” — Larry Brooks, bestselling author of Story Fix, Darkness Bound

Debbie Burke is a founding member of Authors of the Flathead. She’s a regular contributor to The Kill Zone, one of Writer’s Digest’s 101 Best Websites for Writers. Her first Tawny Lindholm thriller, “Instrument of the Devil,” won the Kindle Scout contest and the Zebulon Award.

“Stalking Midas” is available locally in paperback at the Book Shelf and Bad Rock Books, or online at Amazon. Website: debbieburkewriter.com

‘Fatal Feast’

By Betty Kuffel, MD

Brilliant young researcher Dr. Callie Archer vows to find a cure for an aggressive prion variant of mad cow disease that killed her father. Like unstoppable super-bugs, the deadly proteins infect livestock and wild game threatening world food supplies. Humans who eat infected meat become paranoid, violent and die horrible deaths.

Federal authorities isolate Archer’s primate research project at an NIH high-risk laboratory in the mountains of Montana for protection from radical animal rights activists. While she risks her life to stop the catastrophic disease that could prove fatal to millions, a sexist director, sabotaging cohort, and a handsome rancher obstruct her progress. Archer closes in on a cure, but murderous activists penetrate her lab, steal infected animals, and nearly kill her. Dr. Betty Kuffel has flown airplanes, raced sled dogs, and survived a plane crash in the snowy mountains of Idaho. These experiences, along with emergency medicine fuel her writing. The former Alaska resident lives in Whitefish with her husband, two dogs, and yard full of deer.

“Fatal Feast” is her seventh publication in seven years as a member of the Authors of the Flathead writing group.

Kuffel is president of Authors of the Flathead, chairman of the Montana Women Writers, and conference coordinator for the Flathead River Writers Conference Sept. 14 and 15 at Flathead Valley Community College.

‘The Big Sky Boys and Life on the Spinnin’ Spur’

By Todd Linder

Monday Creek Publishing

Set in the West of bygone years, the Big Sky Boys live and work together on the Spinnin’ Spur ranch along with the ranch cook and Rooster’s pet armadillo, Albert. They work the hard life of cowboys, but there’s always a way to have a little fun while working. From bronc busting to birthday parties to making music, you never can tell what will happen. And even though there’s plenty of teasing that goes on, in the end they are the best of partners.

Montana author Todd Linder is a former elementary educator who spent many hours reading aloud to students in hopes of not just entertaining them but also of instilling in them the love of being lost in a book. As a boy riding horses, Linder wondered if he had been born a 100 years too late and what it would have been like to cowboy with the likes of C.M. Russell in Montana or with the hands on the King Ranch in Texas. He’s realized at least part of that dream by living in Montana.

‘First Rangers: The Life and Times of Frank Liebig and Fred Herrig, Glacier Country 1902-1910’

By C.W. Guthrie

Farcountry Press

A special breed of adventurer, the first forest rangers were among the explorers, mountain men, lawmen and pioneers who made America. “First Rangers” details the exploits of two of these men, told mostly in their own words. Written in the saddle while riding along the trail, or on a log at camp, or at a table in a dimly lit cabin, these stories bring to life a bygone era.

Frank Liebig and Fred Herrig were the first forest rangers assigned to protect the wild country that became Glacier National Park. Their job was to stop wildfires, timber thieves, squatters and poachers. Supremely suited to their work, Frank and Fred were skilled woodsmen, natural leaders, and men of rare courage and integrity. Their legacy lives on in the park’s protected wild lands and in the ethos of today’s forest and park rangers.

‘The Serpent, The Puma, and The Condor: A Tale of Machu Pichu’

By Gayle Marie

After traveling to Machu Picchu with an Inca shaman, former Whitefish resident Gayle Marie felt compelled to denounce the notion of conquistadors as national heroes. Set in the 1500s, her resulting novel, “The Serpent, The Puma, and The Condor: A Tale of Machu Pichu” is a fictionalized account of the Spanish invasion of Peru, told from the Inca perspective.

Marie’s novel received a 2019 Gold Medal for Best First Book–Fiction from IPPY (Independent Publisher Book Awards), was a 2019 Finalist for Multicultural Fiction at the Next Generation Indie Book Awards, and received a 2019 National Indie Excellence Award for Multicultural Fiction.

Marie is a native of Boise, Idaho. After her first career as an astrologer she earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. She now uses her research methods, insight into human nature, and love of magical elements in everyday life to tell stories. She is currently at work on her second novel, “The Muse of Albi,” a time-travel tale that takes place in New Orleans and France.

Available on the author’s website, https://gaylemarieauthor.com

‘New York to Montana’

By Dan Sullivan

and Thom Shepherd

Sullivan and Shepherd have co-written a new novel titled “New York to Montana,” which largely takes place near Kalispell. The thriller is based on Shepherd’s song by the same name.

The story is about an unscrupulous New York stockbroker who is on the run from the mob after he gets caught in a money laundering scheme by the FBI. He runs to Montana to hide, but the boys from New Jersey soon find out he’s alive and follow his wife’s trail to him. The deadly showdown takes place on a ranch just northwest of Kalispell, pitting the ruthless mob against Montana cowboys.

Thom Shepherd was recently voted the Texas CMA Songwriter of the year. His songs, including two number one hits, (“Riding with Private Malone” and “Redneck Yacht Club,” have been recorded by over 100 artists.

Dan Sullivan is an author living in Boise, Idaho.

The book and Kindle version are available online at Amazon.

‘Seven Montanas: A Journey in Search of the Soul of the Treasure State’

(October 2019)

By Ednor Therriault

While Montanans share a few attitudes and love of the land that attracts them to Big Sky country, it’s the differences between the regions that truly give the state its unique flavor. Through interviews, photos, history and personal observations, author Ednor Therriault profiles each region and in the process gives a more complete view of the state as a whole. Therriault has spent more than 20 years exploring Montana. He’s written two editions of” Montana Curiosities,” revised the current edition of “Montana Off the Beaten Path,” and has completed work on “Yellowstone Myths and Legends,” which includes in-depth historical information on Montana’s gateway communities of Gardiner and West Yellowstone.

Therriault brings the wit of a humorist, the fact-finding tenacity of a journalist, and a deep Montana pedigree to his work. His father, a decorated Marine pilot, was born in Missoula. His great-great-grandparents homesteaded along Douglas Creek in the Flint Valley in the late 1800s, and his grandfather mined for gold in Garnet, now Montana’s best-preserved ghost town.

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