Rating: 4 🌈
I needed to double check the release date because of cultural references Fielding’s used in the story, but she’s stated it takes place in the 70’s , not present day. So mentions of President Carter, Mork & Mindy, and , RIP, Burt Reynolds, makes sense.
Of course, given it’s the Bureau, you just never know.
There’s all sorts of beings that are featured in Bureau stories. This time it’s sasquatch.
Kim Fielding, as she has a way of doing, gets to the heart of her character’s history and momentous occasion in the prologue. Simple, unerringly haunting, and concise.
It sticks with the reader too , following through the story, tugging at you. So when Fielding’s plot neatly threads it into place, as a reader, it’s less surprise but more just a moment of content and satisfaction.
Art Gundersen is a lovely, gentle big, very big, man. One directed into his job with the Bureau of Trans-Species Affairs by Ralph Crespo, our Dragon agent of the previous story.
He’s mostly someone who’s devoted to his lab and research until the Director asks him for assistance with a special case up in the woods. One of murder.
Jerry Humboldt is the Forestry Agent who found the hiker’s body and called for help.
Jerry is quiet, protective of his woods, and worried about the circumstances the dead hiker’s been found in. As everything points to another species having been the culprit.
Fielding’s story builds slowly around these two shy huge men , getting to know one another as they try to investigate the murder and maybe the other mysteries surrounding each other.
There’s a bit of Instant love here. But it’s so cute , and neither has had any relationship at all . So well, let’s just give them a break.
The solution to the murders and dramatic climax is a good one! Thrilling.
And it was great seeing a old friend once more.
Wonderful to dive back into the Bureau series again, I’m recommending it!
White Clay #2
Art Gundersen did not make it as an agent with the Bureau of Trans-Species Affairs. But when Chief Townsend orders him out of the lab and into the mountains of northern California to collect evidence from a murder scene, Art’s happy to go. He looks forward to tromping around in the wilderness—and finds he enjoys the company of the forest technician who discovered the hiker’s corpse surrounded by Sasquatch footprints.
Jerry Humboldt lives a somewhat reclusive life in the fire lookout tower. Nobody comments much on his enormous size. Or his unusually hairy feet. Then Art shows up, and Jerry is forced into some new realizations.
As Art and Jerry interact, they discover some long-past connections as well as some very present dangers. It’s a risky equation: an awkward not-agent, a virginal “wild man” of the forest, and a multiple murderer—with the Bureau’s help six hundred miles away.