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The Boy Who Stole the Leopard's Spots    by Tamar Myers Amazon.com order for
Boy Who Stole the Leopard's Spots
by Tamar Myers
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William Morrow, 2012 (2012)
Softcover, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Author Tamar Myers is a very busy and capable writer. Witness her sixteen Den of Antiquity mysteries and seventeen Pennsylvania Dutch mysteries. Calling on the place where she was born and raised the Belgian Congo she has given her readers three with the 1920s Congo as background; The Headhunter's Daughter, The Witch Doctor's Wife, and now The Boy Who Stole the Leopard's Spots.

It was a time when leopards attacked homes in the villages and took their dogs. These dogs were not pets but necessary for the hunting required to bring meat to the hunters' families.

A young American missionary, Amanda, and Police Chief Pierre Jardin have taken a liking to each other. The local witch doctor and his wife, wise-woman Cripple, weave their way into the story. The four become enmeshed in the evil omens and odd happenings. Strangers appear and worry the villagers of Belle Vue. An unsolved disappearance vexes everyone but a storm that literally divides the village presents big problems. On top of all that, a giant anaconda is in the process of eating a goat, swallowing it whole!

I found it a true delight to read the work of someone who can write with great authenticity about her subject. Myers' use of the native languages gave me a real feeling for the place. This is a complete change of pace for the author, but done with first-hand knowledge and excellent writing skills.

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