book cover of Never Name the Dead
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Never Name the Dead

(The first book in the Mud Sawpole Mystery series)
A novel by

Old grudges, tribal traditions, and outside influences collide for a Kiowa woman as forces threaten her family, her tribe, and the land of her ancestors, in this own-voices debut perfect for fans of Winter Counts.

No one called her Mud in Silicon Valley. There, she was Mae, a high-powered professional who had left her Kiowa roots behind a decade ago. But a cryptic voice message from her grandfather, James Sawpole, telling her to come home sounds so wrong that she catches the next plane to Oklahoma. She never expected to be plunged into a web of theft, betrayal, and murder.
Mud discovers a tribe in disarray. Fracking is damaging their ancestral lands, Kiowa families are being forced to sell off their artifacts, and frackers have threatened to kill her grandfather over his water rights. When Mud and her cousin Denny discover her grandfather missing, accused of stealing the valuable Jefferson Peace medal from the tribe museum—and stumble across a body in his work room—Mud has no choice but to search for answers.
Mud sets out into the Wildlife Refuge, determined to clear her grandfather's name and identify the killer. But Mud has no idea that she's about to embark on a vision quest that will involve deceit, greed, and a charging buffalo—or that a murderer is on her trail.

Genre: Mystery

Praise for this book

"Oil frackers and regalia looters meet their match in Mae Mud Sawpole, a Silicon Valley exec and former college softball slugger who returns to her Kiowa homeland in Oklahoma to settle the score." - Kris Lackey

"Greed and murder face off against the power of traditional Native American wisdom and rituals in a gripping tale set in Oklahoma on a reservation fighting to preserve the Kiowa culture and way of life. Mystical and magical, D. M. Rowell's debut novel puts her in the ranks of Tony Hillerman, with a resolute female sleuth whose name is Mud but whose vision, purified with sacred smoke, is crystal clear." - Eric Redman

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