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About Donna R. Wood
"It is the function of art to renew our perception. What we are familiar with we cease to see. The writer shakes up the familiar scene, and, as if by magic, we see a new meaning in it." ~ Anais Nin
Life is a journey on which we all embark from the moment in which we take our first breath. Since the beginning of time, the scribes, the bards, or the writers have been tasked with the laborious endeavor of recording the journey of the human race. I am among these.
I am a writer of the abstract, and a relentless propagator of the metaphor. I am a reader of the classics, and the contemporary.
The prose I offer forth into the world are pieces of myself, pieces of the world. The world I knew, the world I know, and the world that may yet be. I am an independent author as my worlds are my own. These are the worlds which I wish to share with you, the reader.
Donna R. Wood began her career as an author in 2011, when she published her first full-length novel, Sticks and Bones. Since then, she has gone on to write three novels and several short stories. Donna is a certified wellbeing coach and is the owner of Butterfly Phoenix and Butterfly Phoenix Publishing. Donna is a supporter of women’s rights, an LGBTQIA2S+ ally, an interfaith minister, and coffee connoisseur. She makes her home in Fargo, North Dakota, where she enjoys spending time with her children and grandchildren.
Detective Marcia Grant never thought much about high school, until the body of missing Leah Jackson is discovered on an abandoned farmstead. The discovery launches Marcia into a world she had left behind years ago; the world where the social ladder must be climbed, or clung to, at all costs; or risk social suicide.
Officer Jonathon Drake worked hard ensuring his next step on the professional ladder would be to Detective. He never thought his career would be derailed by a woman. Especially the woman he secretly planned to marry – one day.
The holiday season is upon the Midwestern city of West Fargo. The school year is in full swing, when Halloween night, high school sophomore, Leah Jackson, will leave her home for the last time. The gossip mill begins to grind in the school system, the police department, and throughout the metropolitan area.
Who killed Leah Jackson? Was it Clyde Jordaine the abusive, alcoholic widower who owns the abandoned farmstead? Was it Sasha Davis the high society girl, and best friend of Leah Jackson, in a move to become Queen Bee of the tenth grade? Was it a Satanic Halloween ritual propagated by Sean Dorian and his minions?
As Marcia moves her inexperienced team forward through the investigation, a time bomb is ticking in the city. The tension is running high in the department and in the streets. Caving under the pressure of the investigation, Drake inadvertently lets Marcia know how he feels about her and disappears into the night; igniting suspicious minds within the department.
There are no real suspects in the case, only speculation and hearsay. Until a primetime news show develops into a new theory. A new possibility that even Marcia, with her degrees in behavioral science and forensic psychology, had not considered. It wasn’t possible. Or, was it?
“Sticks and Bones” promises a journey through the underbelly of the American High School like no other. Love them or hate them, the characters leap off the page, into the memories of the reader, taking on the forms of ghosts from the past. Do you dare journey back to high school? Just one more time?
High atop the butte, Crow Flies High, on the opposite bank of the Missouri River, Blake Eldridge, a Homeland Security Agent, keeps watch over the Four Bears Bridge and the deserted casino. Distracted by a small twin engine plane, flying low over the river, he doesn’t hear the men, who will change his life forever, sneaking up behind him. Held captive in a cabin in the middle of the vast emptiness of the prairie, Eldridge has to formulate his escape, before the men make good on their promise to behead him on live television.
At the Capitol Building in Bismarck, Governor Mark Danielson agrees to a meeting with the Tribal Council of the MHA Nation, regarding the closing of the casino in New Town. Tribal Chair, Ronald Yellow Feather, is whisked away to the hospital, while the throng of protestors that have gathered on the Capitol lawn ignites out of control and the Bismarck S.W.A.T. team moves in assisted by the North Dakota National Guard.
In a small diner on the main street of New Town, patrons watch in anticipation of the most horrific thing they have ever seen in their entire lives: the beheading of the Homeland Security Agent. Devin, along with his fiancé and her mother, are among the patrons. Devin replays the event over and over in his mind. It wasn’t real. At least he doesn’t think it was. Leaving his fiancé and her mother at home, Devin follows his instinct to leave no man behind, and goes in search of the agent, that only he seems to know is still very much alive.
Lying helpless in a hospital bed in Bismarck, Ronald Yellow Feather makes a confession to his wife that will end their forty year marriage ~ for good. As far as she is concerned, her husband is a traitor, not only to their marriage, but the tribe, and all the Native American people of the world. Medicine Man, and Ronald’s life-long friend, John Big Bear, has the evidence in his hands that will throw Ronald not only out of his office as Tribal Chair, but out of the tribe as well.
In the hunting shanty that had belonged to his grandparents, Devin and his best friend Paul, learn that America’s greatest fear has come to pass. The men, who had held Eldridge hostage, are not foreigners at all. They are Americans; men in the employ of a megalomaniac, who is sick, twisted and sadistic to the core. The man who is now hunting them.
Lake Metigoshe, North Central North Dakota on the Canadian Border, near the Peace Gardens: Governor Mark Danielson ponders the chaos that has set his state on fire. Danielson commandeers the Humvee of the Guardsman tasked with the protection of the Governor and his family, and heads southwest to the Minot Air Base, where he finds the answers to all his questions ~ answers that shock him to the very center of his being.
Alone in his hospital room, Ronald vows to redeem himself. There may be no redemption from his wife, Elizabeth, but he has to make it right for the Tribe. He confesses all he knows to General Ryder at the Minot Air Base, promising to testify in exchange for leniency. He may spend the rest of his life in a Federal prison, but at least the Tribe will have the hope of a future. His only regret is that it will be a future that won’t include him.
In the skies above Johnsport shines a star that seems to grow in size and brilliance with each passing day. Is it a sign from He Who Created All Things, or an omen of the days foretold in the Great Book of All Things? The seasons are out of season, famine has swept the land, and a plague of fear has engulfed the Lowlands.
The only hope for the world is the power held between the two McCormick sisters. A power they have kept hidden in the elusive fields of butterflies. The na hÉireann men of science must find the source of this power, and the Daoine Réalta an explanation. The answer to the question must be found - Does He Who Created All Things exist or does He not?
Known only as Dances with the Butterflies, and the Wishing Woman of Johnsport, by the original peoples, the Daoine Réalta, the sisters are to be avoided at all costs. They are dangerous to be sure, and hold a deep and mysterious power beneath their flesh. One they hide in the elusive Butterfly Fields of legend.
It was these sisters, who brought the war between He Who Created All Things and the ruler of the Land of Eternal Flames to the Lowlands. The only hope for the Lowlands, and indeed the world, is the secret that lies in the depths of the keep of the Daoine Réalta citadel.