By Christine Barber

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AUTHOR’S NOTE The Spanish words used in this book reflect New Mexico’s unique Spanish dialect and, as such, do not share all the characteristics of the better-known, modern-day Spanish. ” Additionally in the book, the term Hispanic is used instead of Latino when referring to someone from Northern New Mexico who is of Spanish descent. While Latino is the term most used in the rest of the country, Hispanic is the preferred local term. The moment I saw the brilliant, proud morning shine high up over the deserts of Santa Fe, something stood still in my soul, and I started to attend.

It made her want to poke him. He was neat, calm, professional, clean-cut. And she really wanted to poke him. Really. Instead, she said, “We got a strange phone call at the newspaper last night. This elderly woman who always calls in tips to the paper said she heard two Santa Fe police officers on the scanner talking about the state police and the OMI. ” Several male officers at the desk next to them started laughing suddenly. At first she thought they were laughing at her question. Hastily, she looked over at them, but they were listening to a young, good-looking officer who was sitting casually on the desk.

She hadn’t been lying to Tommy Martinez when she said she’d been planning to get up early. She had been planning on coming here. It had become her habit to sit in the church at least once a week for a few minutes, sometimes hours. She wasn’t Catholic—she wasn’t anything—but the church comforted her. The once brightly colored santos and retables behind the altar were faded. The crucifix, grisly with painted blood dripping from Jesus’ head and hands, was chipped and worn. Everything was shabby, ancient, and smelled of prayers and hopes and candle wax.

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