Dragon's Bones

by James A. Hetley
Release date: 2011
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasyurban fantasy

Few things about Stonefort are exactly as they seem.

Stonefort, small fishing village and harbor and township and island, sits off the Maine coast, about as far Down East as you can get without passing through Canadian Customs. Only the Salt Hay Bridge connects it to the mainland and rest of the Boston States. If you held a vote, probably more than half of the residents would choose to blow up that bridge and all it implies.

Those residents are about as hard and abrasive as the granite under their boots or the weather that can kill even the most experienced sailors any day of the year. Descended from a peculiar alliance between Naskeag Indians and Welsh refugees from the fire and sword of Edward I of England, they hold a well-earned distrust of strangers and governments and laws, things that seem calculated to keep a man or woman from surviving on an unforgiving land and sea.

From jack-lighting a deer out of season up through running rum or dope under the noses of the Coast Guard, even outright piracy with cutlass and cannon or computer - as long as you never foul your own nest, you do what you have to do. If Stonefort bothered with a town motto, it would be some Latin or Welsh version of "Getting By."

Getting by in Stonefort includes true magic lurking under the surface and in the shadows. Magic flows in the power of the hidden spring of the Haskell House, in the Stonefort granite and oaks and pines that speak through the hands of Rowley men and women who have crafted them for generations. The Haskell Witches and the Rowleys have carried the sword and scales of Stonefort justice for centuries. They are far more likely to protect their people with a strong right arm or magic than resort to law. It's more reliable and faster, more suited to a life in a harsh land than the indifferent fancies of far-off politicians.

In this latest installment in the Stonefort saga, Maine author James A. Hetley revisits the tough land when a logging camp becomes the center of illegal activity in this world and perhaps in another as well. Nurse and cop, both must face a special duty in the face of Dragon's Bones.

updated 2018-06-28

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