THE WOOD WIFE
Maggie Black walked away from her life in L.A. when her mentor, poet Davis Cooper, died and left her his home in Arizona. She decides to move in and write his biography, unraveling the mystery of Davis' life and death. But Maggie finds she's not the only one looking for answers; the house has been ransacked. Maggie also discovers ancient, wild spirits in the desert who feed on creative energies, as well as an enigmatic man, Fox, who understands what she is facing.
Windling expertly merges Native American mythology and contemporary mystery with a colorful and descriptive background. Her acceptance of the magic that permeates the area is presented as entirely sensible and in character, with space and time beginning to lose some of their concrete meaning. This breathtaking novel was first published in 1997. (May, 319 pp., $14.95)