Thursday, November 18, 2010

Anasazi Intrigue, Mayan Intrigue, and a Giveaway



















Having read A Family Saga in Bear Lake Valley, a series of five novels by Linda Weaver Clarke, I felt fortunate to receive two of her new books to review. They are a departure for the author, whose previous books are historical romances (although the new books also include a healthy dose of romance). Published in 2010, both Anasazi Intrigue and Mayan Intrigue are set in present times, complete with busy schedules and cell phones, and tell the story of John and Julia Evans (John is the grandson of one of the characters in the last book of the family saga series). Author Linda Weaver Clarke draws from her own experiences as well as from extensive research in her newest books, which are mystery novels with a central theme: archaeological theft. I don't want to spoil the plots or mysteries from either book, so my reviews below are brief introductions to Linda's latest novels.
"She was a reporter and was supposed to write about the tragedy, but this was personal. Her valley and her friends' homes were being ripped apart. The destruction below wrenched at Julia's heart."
~Anasazi Intrigue, Linda Weaver Clarke
Anasazi Intrigue is the first novel in this series, which begins with a devastating flood that leads Julia, a reporter, to try to solve the case of the poisoned fish and cats. Soon after she starts to investigate, Julia and her husband, John, find themselves in danger, because Julia is "too observant", and the mystery unfolds. The disaster portrayed in the opening of the book is based on the actual Santa Clara/Virgin River flood of 2005 in southern Utah. The author weaves in many fascinating tidbits about the Anasazi Indians and their dwellings, which make the book an interesting page-turner.
"Instinctively, she knew that her life was in danger. Why, she did not know."
~Mayan Intrigue, Linda Weaver Clarke
Eager for more adventures with the Evans, I started to read Mayan Intrigue as soon as I had finished the first novel. In this book, John and Julia venture to the Yucatan Peninsula to take a relaxing vacation and nurture their marriage, which has suffered as a result of John's neglect (due to his work as a knife maker). Julia is also on assignment for the newspaper while in Mexico, and the couple is joined by their bachelor friend, Paul, a dedicated archaeologist. What starts out as a romantic trip quickly turns into a dangerous adventure among the Mayan ruins and jungles, and the vacationers are on the run from thieves--and wild animals! Excitement prevails, and this book is full of mystery and suspense.

Linda's writing is lively and down-to-earth; she has the ability to make you feel as if you're in these stories, along with John and Julia, trying to decipher the truth and escape from harm. Before reading these novels, I didn't know much about archaeological thievery, although I was introduced to artifact theft when I interviewed Linda this past April (please read the interview for more details).

When the third book in this series is published, Montezuma Intrigue, I hope to read it as well, because there are many things I like about these books, including the vivid writing, humor, and suspense, which kept me entertained. But to me what has been most outstanding about this series so far are the characters, especially Julia. She is a feminist in the best sense of the word. Julia is unafraid to go after what she wants; she is an equal partner in her marriage and has an adoring husband and three daughters, and an exciting job as a reporter (sometimes it's a bit too exciting). She's admired by others who perceive her correctly (even by some of the thieves). I think this is important because all too often, men seem to be the only ones admired, in books and in life. Julia is admired not just for her beauty but for her intelligence and resourcefulness as well. Julia's daughters, the twins, Sharlene and Faith, and April, are portrayed as strong young women, and we expect that they will also follow their dreams. They have a strong role model, Julia, and a loving father who is supportive of his wife.


Wonderful news! Linda Weaver Clarke is generously offering a copy of the first book in this new series, Anasazi Intrigue, as a giveaway (U.S./Canada only).









  • To enter this giveaway, simply leave a comment.
  • For an extra chance at winning, read the first chapter of Anasazi Intrigue, then return here and leave a comment about your favorite part of the chapter, or about what first grabbed your interest while reading the excerpt. The chapter is short and should only take a few minutes to read.
  • For an extra chance at winning, become a follower of this blog, or let me know that you're already a follower, or that you subscribe in Google Reader.
  • For an additional chance, post about this contest on your blog, Facebook, or Twitter.

Enter by 5 PM PST on Wednesday, December 1. The winner will be chosen randomly and announced on Thursday, December 2. Good luck!

Special thanks to Linda Weaver Clarke for sending me her books to review and for offering this giveaway.

48 comments:

  1. These sounds like very interesting historical novels

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  2. I would really find this an interesting book. Please enter me.
    pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

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  3. I am a follower.
    pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

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  4. Awesome review. I have not heard of this author, and I am glad you reviewed these books. Sounds very good. The concept of archaeological thievery is interesting as well, and I also don't know much about it.

    Enter me too.
    givingreadingachance@gmail.com
    I am a follower/

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  5. Ooh! It sounds like these would make for great summer reads, and I like the geographical area that the books focus on. I also loved your double review, and your enthusiasm over the books makes me want to try them too. Please do enter me in your giveaway! They sound great!

    zibilee(at)figearo(dot)net

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  6. Those covers certainly scream adventure! Glad you enjoyed them.

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  7. I'd love to win a copy!
    shetreadssoftly(at)gmail(dot)com

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  8. And the reason I'd love to win is because I need to find out more about the red triangle pendant and the man in white.

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  9. Oh I won her Bear Lake Valley book and haven't had a chance to read it ! I would love these too.
    Nataliew2@gmail.com

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  10. This new series with archaeology settings sounds very interesting.

    Please enter me in the contest.

    Helen Kiker
    hdkiker@comcast.net

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  11. I read the excerpt and everything grabbed my interest with the landslide problems, a stranger giving bad vibes, dreams of ancient artifacts and snakes!

    Please enter this as an additional comment in the drawing.

    Helen Kiker
    hdkiker@comcast.net

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  12. I love books that have action, adventure and intrigue. This one promises plenty of all!

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  13. These books sound like a great read and I would love to read them.

    cenya2 at hotmail dot com

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  14. I would like to read this book

    clenna at aol dot com

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  15. I was shocked to read about the flooding and the homes being destroyed. The weather has been so crazy that this could actually happen.

    clenna at aol dot com

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  16. I already follow via Google.

    clenna at aol dot com

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  17. Having recently read "Mayan Intrigue" and writing a review about it, I certainly want to read Linda's new novel as well...soon! The Evan's always manage to find trouble much too easily...or should I blame it on Julia? LOL Thank you for this giveaway and the chance to win Linda's new book. I hope I do.

    Blessings,
    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

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  18. I am a new GFC follower of this blog.

    Thank You,
    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

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  19. Would love to read this book!

    littleone AT shaw DOT ca

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  20. New follower on GFC.

    littleone AT shaw DOT ca

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  21. These books sound so interesting with the history and the mystery along with a little archaeology.

    pallotta [at] mindsping [dot]com

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  22. Linda Clarke is a great writer, and I'm fascinated with this set of books.

    LouisePledge (at) juno (dot) com

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  23. I remember you posting about Linda Weaver Clarke on your blog. The books sound great! I'll be adding a link to your contest to my sidebar.
    Enjoy your weekend ;)
    http://thebookworm07.blogspot.com/

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  24. No need to enter me...I have this posted at win a book!

    http://winabook.westofmars.com/2010/11/20/anasazi-intrigue-and-mayan-intrigue-by-linda-weaver-clarke/

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  25. I would really love to read this. Thanks for the great giveaway :)

    mrsjohnson1982 at yahoo dot com

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  26. Thanks for all the comments. Special thanks to Naida from the bookworm and Mary from BookHounds for posting about this giveaway! :)

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  27. Oh wow! This does sound different from what I usually read but oh so interesting! I actually like books with married couples but don't get to read them very often. Thank you so much for the chance to win.

    I'm an old follower ;-)

    XOXO~ Renee
    steelergirl83(at)gmail(dot)com

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  28. I'd love to enter!

    aikychien at yahoo dot com

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  29. I'm a follower.

    aikychien at yahoo dot com

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  30. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  31. I'm already a follower.

    Would love to win this mystery novel! Mysteries are a favorite genre of mine.

    harvee44 at yahoo.com

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  32. I read the first chapter of Anasazi Intrigue and my interest was caught. I can hardly wait to read the rest of the book!
    mom1248(at)att(dot)net

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  33. My favorite part was when Julia found the pond with the dead fish in it. It made me curious to find out why they died.

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  34. I forgot to add my email to my last post.
    mom1248(at)att(dot)net

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  35. I follow via GFC.
    mom1248(at)att(dot)net

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  36. I like these type of mysteries. More titles to add to my to-read list.

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  37. I posted a link to the giveaway in the sidebar of my blog:
    http://undermyappletree.wordpress.com/

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  38. These sound interesting.

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

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  39. I would be thrilled to read these Thanks for the giveaway
    tanyainjville at yahoo dot com

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  40. This looks like an intriguing book. Thanks for the giveaway.
    mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

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  41. I love to read and adding to my collection would be great!

    hb_carebear_07 at yahoo

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  42. Interesting! Please throw my name in the hat!

    I'm following through GFC.

    Tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/afewmorepages/status/9313454586339328

    srfbluemama[at]gmail[dot]com

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  43. Sounds like a great book!
    Following now!
    jacque
    twinmomx5 at gmail dot com

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  44. Thank you so much for a wonderful review of my two books. You are so sweet and I appreciate everything you do for me. This was fun reading the comments of your readers. Thanks, Susan. You're a great friend. And thanks, everyone, for participating in this book giveaway.

    ReplyDelete

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