Ghost Medicine

Ella Clah (Volume 17)

Aimee Thurlo and David Thurlo

Forge Books

Aimee and David Thurlo’s newest mystery Ghost Medicine, featuring Navajo Police Special Investigator Ella Clah.

Ella  takes all her cases personally, but some cases are more personal than others.  The murder of Harry Ute is one of those—not only because Ella and Harry dated, years ago, but because Harry was once a member of her investigative team. Ella’s team is as close to her as family and a blow against one is a blow against all.

Harry’s been working for Bruce “Teeny” Little, a local security expert, but despite their long friendship, Teeny won’t tell Ella much, just the job involves theft of government property. The dead man was found in an isolated area of the Rez that is reportedly haunted by skinwalkers and the scattered residents are too frightened of the Navajo witches to tell the police much.

County cop Dan Nez is also looking into the government thefts. The two detectives—each top dog in their own territory—will have to share jurisdiction, something complicated by their growing attraction to each other. 

Ella finds evidence that connects Harry’s murder to the secret sale of previously unknown Navajo artifacts. If Harry discovered a hidden—and illegal—dig, the artifact smugglers might have killed him to protect their lucrative operation. 

Identifying the murderer isn’t going to be easy. But Harry was one of her own and Ella is determined to bring his killer to justice. 

At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.


Read an Excerpt


"Change is in the air, partner." Ella Clah, Special Investigator for the Navajo Tribal Police, gazed at the steep, pastel layered walls of the sandstone mesa north of the valley. She and her partner were 10-7, out of service, having lunch, and she was staring out the window of the Totah Café, her favorite restaurant. Even the land itself changed. New arroyos appeared, and old ones faded away under clouds of dust and sand, leaving fans of washed-out gravel, and sometimes even petrified shark teeth from an ancient sea.

"Every time we get a new politician out to make his


Praise for Ghost Medicine

Praise for the Ella Clah series:

“An outstanding series.”—Booklist (starred review)

“Aimée and David Thurlo have a robust regional series going with Ella Clah, a Navajo Tribal Police officer whose investigations usually involve a standoff between tribal tradition and modern ways.”

The New York Times Book Review

"Navajo police sort through a tangle of lies and loyalties while respecting the values of traditionalists and adapting to modern intrusions.”

Publishers Weekly on Earthway


“A first-rate thriller. If you are a mystery buff, you will enjoy this story, with colorful characters and that backdrop of the American Southwest.”

Shelf Life on Earthway


“The Thurlos have done their research thoroughly and their portrayal of the Diné, their culture, and the arid landscape surrounding them is right on. But what really brings the story to life are the characters, especially Clah, her mother Rose, brother Clifford, and FBI agent Dwayne Blalock, who are finely drawn and represent the spectrum of beliefs on the reservation. This is a book and series worth exploring, especially for readers interested in native American culture. The mystery is complex, the tension high, and the plot bends and folds like a never-ending-snake.”
Mystery Scene Magazine on Never-Ending-Snake

“Each mystery is a satisfying puzzle on its own. Razor-sharp suspense, deep atmosphere, and compelling characters make this another Ella Clah winner.”—Booklist on Coyote’s Wife

“The book mixes straightforward police procedural with Tony Hillerman–style exploration of the culture of the Navajo. Ella Clah continues to be a compelling character and the story here, which involves a possible serial killer (or maybe something a lot less complicated), should keep readers on their toes until the final pages.”  —Booklist on Black Thunder

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Aimee Thurlo and David Thurlo

  • AIMÉE AND DAVID THURLO are the authors of the critically-acclaimed Ella Clah mystery series, which includes Black Thunder and Never-ending-snake.  They have also written the Sister Agatha mysteries; several novels about a Lee Nez, a Navajo vampire; The Spirit Line, a young adult novel; and numerous romantic suspense novels for Harlequin Intrigue.


    The Thurlos live in Corrales, New Mexico, with a number of animals who reflect their passion for animal adoption.  David grew up on the Navajo Reservation and later returned there to teach.  Aimée is a native of Cuba who has lived in the American Southwest for more than thirty years

  • Aimée Thurlo


Available Formats and Book Details

Ghost Medicine

Ella Clah

Aimee Thurlo and David Thurlo



Forge Books