During the autumn of 1910 twelve-year old deputy constable Jo Harper is making the most of a warm Indian Summer until a deadly mystery brings a winter chill to the season. When chief badge toter Abby Drake asks Jo to help promote the movie career of Jupiter, an enormous prize-winning horse, neither of Willowby, Wyoming's top law & order gals expect the storm of fire and flaming arrows that follows.
And with so many other things straying off the trail—from a potential new boyfriend to keeping an autograph book, from a perpetually absent father to the unrelenting progress of 20th century technology—how will Jo rope her destiny and tie up her most dangerous adventure at the same time?
Jo Harper, Abby Drake, and Frog return with Jupiter, "a Horse to Remember!" in this sequel to RACING A DOG STAR.
Red faced with anger, spectacles sliding down her nose, her tiny fist clenched into a marble mallet, Beatrice Dunn pounded the old cherrywood lectern while her gray, crocheted shawl dropped from her long cotton shirt sleeves to the school room floor.
Twelve-year old Jo Harper had never seen the new school marm pitch such a hissy fit, and like the dozen students around her, Jo was fighting a nervous snicker. Chalk dust tickled Jo's nose with each thump of the lectern.
The target of Beatrice’s anger was one of the older boys in the row behind Jo, a farm kid with the unlikely name of Ned Salamander. The herd of wild boys sitting in the bench beside him called him Sally, and not appreciating the nickname, Ned complained aloud. So they teased him all the more, even during math lessons. Naturally, it was Sally, er, Ned that Beatrice blamed for the ruckus.
“Once and for all, I have had enough nonsense, Ned,” said Beatrice. “This is your final warning. Do you hear me young man? Your final warning.”
Seventeen year-old Ned couldn’t keep sober at being called a young man by the equally young Beatrice and, turning to the very boys who teased him, pulled a funny face. The boys laughed like a team of mischievous donkeys. Not that Jo could blame them.
Floundering behind the lectern, Beatrice was only a few years older than Jo, a student herself when the fall semester’s first teacher ended up in jail. As a stand-in, Beatrice was in above her head. And as a girl, she was completely the opposite of Jo. Where Beatrice’s hair was mouse brown and thin, Jo’s long, thick braid was raven black. While Beatrice dressed like a spinster with sweaters and long skirts, Jo wore tough canvas shirts and denim jeans. Beatrice liked to knit. Jo liked to shoot six-guns.
Beatrice had really tried to be a good teacher, treading water for the past month or two, but she was going under. Just as Jo started feeling sorry for her, the teacher turned and stomped down the center aisle, then ran from the building.