Title: Medicine Man 1
Author: S.R. Howen
Publisher: Wild Child Publishing .
Length: Novel (332 pages)
Shannon Running Deer is American Indian by blood, he has forsaken his people’s ancient ways to embrace the “modern” world as a wealthy, highly successful trauma surgeon.
His comfortable existence begins to unravel when, seemingly by chance, Shannon finds himself gradually drawn into the past. Pursued by an ancient evil, he knows he can change the future, if he can survive the past.
In the tradition of Diana Gabaldon, S.R. Howen’s MEDICINE MAN is a distinctive and atmospheric novel full of spirituality, mystical time travel, romance, passion, and suspense.
She stood up, undid her jeans, and started lowering them as if I were not staring at her like some lusty teenager. I fled the room and shut the door on her seductive form. I stood in the hallway, leaned against the wall with my eyes shut, and tried to still the passion she invoked in me. I knew she didn’t wear a bra; the absent top buttons on her shirt made it obvious. She also didn’t wear any underwear. Not unless they were much lower on her hips than her partly lowered jeans. In all my adult life, I had never felt like this before.
“You could have her. Take her,” the elk-man’s voice echoed.
“You’ve been too long without a wife,” my grandfather said.
“Leave me alone,” I said, as much to the elk-man voice as to my grandfather.
“You have been too long without a wife,” my grandfather repeated. “Even I remember what it was like to be that ready for a woman.”
I tried to yank my shirt down further before I opened my eyes to tell him to mind his own business. I got a good view of his back as he went into the guest room. The door shut with a firm thump. The sound of the lock turning made me shake my head.
My grandfather was at his exasperating best. Later, he would wander out of there to raid the refrigerator for whatever he could find. I went into the kitchen and put the tea kettle on the stove. The burner lit with a faint whoosh, and I experienced a flash of the medicine dances I’d attended in my youth. The tribal medicine man would throw fine sulfur dust into the fire to make it do the same thing. A grand show, as was everything medicine men did. None of their tricks had worked for my father.
My father, being a firm believer in the old ways, wouldn’t seek out modern medicine past the point of being told he had terminal cancer. He wouldn’t even consider modern healing mixed with the old beliefs. My own mother turned her back on me after he died.
The teapot shrilled, and Morning Dove’s voice came from the doorway. “I am very tired.”
I took a mug from the shelf above the sink. From a different cupboard, I took down the box of nighttime tea I kept there. I added water and tea to the mug and watched the steam for a moment, before I held it out to her.
“It will help you sleep,” I said when she just looked at the cup.
“I have had enough white-man’s medicines put into me already.” Her eyes flashed with what I took for humor.
“This is a mixture of natural herbs, no preservatives, no artificial colorings, no caffeine. . . ”
With a smile, she took the cup. Her fingers brushed against mine, sending an electric chill along my nerves. I led the way to my study and turned on the gas fireplace. Morning Dove went to the thick sheepskin rug in front of it and sat down. While she sipped the tea, I went to the closet and retrieved a pillow and some blankets. I paused with them in hand to watch her. She sat in the terry robe and held the mug in both hands. She took a small sip and stared into the fire.
Her hair hung down over the robes back in a glimmering wet curtain. One corner of the robe slipped down to reveal her shoulder. I wanted to sink to the floor and wrap myself around her. With a grunt, I pulled myself away from thoughts of intimacy with her. I covered the couch with a sheet and punched the pillow a few times–to fluff it.
The gate buzzer sounded loudly in the silent room. What nut would be out on a night like this unless they had to be? I pulled the door to the study shut and went to answer the gate intercom.
No one answered. When I turned away from it, thinking the storm had made it go off, it buzzed again. Loud and insistent. I jabbed the button.
I heard nothing in return except the thunder rumbling overhead. I pulled open the front door. Down the drive, through the sheets of rain, it looked like a set of round headlights on the other side of the gate. My brother’s Jeep?
I reached back inside and pushed the button to open the gate.
Lightening cracked so bright I couldn’t see for a moment. I blinked back the brightness, tried to blink it away again.
It didn’t help. The deer filling my driveway didn’t go away. They ran past the house in a steady stream, an entire herd. Where had they come from? The drums sounded behind me.
This book had from the first word. As a registered Choctaw Indian, I like to read contemporary stories about Indians and how they come to an agreement with their two lives. Medicine Man fills my expectations and more.
Dr. Shane Running Deer is a trauma surgeon not the medicine man that he was supposed to be in his tribe. Cold and conflicted in his beliefs and feelings, through dreams he comes to realize what he needs to do and what his life could be. Its interesting how the dreams are woven throughout the story. At first it was confusing to me but it all made sense and made for a better story.
Within the dreams, Shane seems to met a woman that either bring him to more danger or a great love. The mystical mixed with suspense/horror are good, too. The way that Ms. Howen brings the lore of Blackfoot only added to my delight. Again, as an Oklahoma Indian but raised in Texas, I wasn’t taught any of my history.
I will say this, its not an easy read. You need to set aside time to savor the world of Dr. Shane Running Deer. You will not be disappointed. Hopefully, there will be a sequel. I need to know more about the woman in his dreams.
I currently work as an editor at Wild Child Publishing (since 1998) and also mentor several beginning writers. My publications include, THE FORGE: DISCOVERIES(Erotica with four star and above reviews)(Freya’s Bower) under the pen name Shaunna Wolf, and upcoming from WCP; TALES OF THE ZINGARI:THE WIZARD’S HEART (Romance), and MEDICINE MAN: THE CHIEF OF ALL TIME (Supernatural suspense) as S.R.Howen.
Author Web Site: http://srhowen.wix.com/srhowen-1#!home/mainPage
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Book Blogs: http://bookblogs.ning.com/profile/SRHowen
Amazon Author’s Page: http://www.amazon.com/Shaunna-Wolf/e/B008HT798M/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1