The Desert Remains

By Charles C. Poling



When Ruby McCullough comes home to the family ranch for her mother's funeral, Daniel Stewart hopes to finally become Ruby's lover--or walk away forever. Instead, Daniel descends into the McCulloughs' vortex of secrecy, betrayal, transgression, and cathartic revelation.

Against a vivid, gritty backdrop of modern ranch life a mystery unfolds. On horseback, Ruby and Daniel search the remote canyons and mesas of the ranch for the burial site where Ruby's father, Calvin, has covertly laid her mother to rest. Ruby also seeks her mother's lost personal diaries, which she hopes will validate Ruby's accusations of abuse against Calvin and settle her inheritance.

As Ruby wrestles her demons and struggles with forgiveness, Daniel unravels his tangled attraction to her. The landscape of the ranch, with its imminent archaeological past and eerily spellbinding presence, draws them into shadowy epiphanies of love, desire, and spiritual insight. In this compelling terrain, enthralled by Ruby's sensuality and intuitive sensitivity, Daniel seeks a path to transcendence at the intersection of body and soul.

"Like a Greek tragedy, The Desert Remains is a novel of grief, dark secrets, unrequited emotion, and self-acceptance that unfolds itself through the lives of a ranching family that readers who love New Mexico will instinctively know and understand. Charles Poling has allowed the landscape and its people to reveal themselves naturally and authentically in this compelling, wise, and beautiful book."--V. B. Price

"Charles Poling has written a beautiful double love story: One about his love for northern New Mexico; the other about love between a man and a woman. The latter is both poignant and tragic."--Tony Hillerman, author of the best-selling Joe Leaphorn/Jim Chee mystery series

Subjects: Fiction

Contributor Bios
A writer and editor for a variety of Southwestern publications, Charles C. Poling focuses on the people, landscape, and horses of New Mexico whenever he can. Now editor and associate publisher of Su Casa magazine, in 1998 he coauthored Cowboy in the Roundhouse, the autobiography of New Mexico Governor Bruce King.