Jenna Caplette
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  • Montana mysteries

Jenna CapletteJenna Caplette migrated from California to Montana in the early 1970s, first living on the Crow Indian reservation. A Healing Arts Practitioner, she owns Bozeman BodyTalk & Integrative Healthcare. She says, " Health is resiliency, a zest for the journey. It’s about coming awake to the joy of being alive. As a practitioner, its a privilege to facilitate that healing process, to help weave new patterns of health & well-being. “ And by the way, healthier, happier people help create a healthier, happier world.

Dunno. It’s a mystery.

Mysteries. Sometimes it’s a mystery to me why I read so many of them. I admit that I rarely make it more than half way in non-fiction books before I’m back to fiction, though I don’t always read mystery-thrillers. Sometimes I escape in to Fantasy - - literally.

Here’s a few issues I find as I read. As a Healing Arts Practitioner it bothers me when a detective gets beaten and shot up at the end of each book, and then is fine, fully recovered in the next. Only to have it all repeated. I have stopped reading mysteries like that, cannot suspend disbelief enough to stay with the story, when in my practice I see people whose emotional & physical injuries have shaped and limited their lives, layer by layer, injury by injury.

Or, there’s the detectives who live on junk food and alcohol, and yet are in superb physical shape, running 5 miles every morning on top of making miraculous recoveries from each injury. Or, those with personalities that can only be entertaining in a novel and then, a few books in to a series, not so much.

A year or so ago, I started to develop a new issue — “over-the-hill” detectives who are in their fifties, for heaven’s sakes. Little old ladies in their 60’s who serve tea and crumpets and live limited, fussy lives.

A friend in her 60’s noticed the same thing. It bugged her as well. The friends and relations I have in this “over-the-hill “age group don’t feel decrepit, are active, dynamic, interesting, and jam-packed with life wisdom whether they know it or not.

Me too. More or less.

Despite these reservations, if Montana winter ever decides to settle in and BE winter, I firmly believe that reading a good novel remains the absolute best way to while away a snowy evening in front of the fire. For your reading pleasure, here’s a handful from the dozens of mysteries I have enjoyed this past year:

Home Place by Carrie La Seur. Set in Eastern Montana. Found it in a bookstore in Missoula. Inhaled it.

The Wild Inside by Montana author, Christine Carbo.

The Ruth Galloway Series by Elly Griffiths. Set in England. Quirky and interesting.

The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic: A Novel by Emily Croy Barker. Oh wait! This one’s not a mystery — but it is fun.

The Beautiful Mystery by Louise Penny. Set in Quebec. Recommended by a client. It’s part of a series but stands alone and is . . . beautiful.