This is the first book in a series of three books that are set in the same place.
Archaeology is an important aspect of this book, specifically the archaeology of the Tucson Basin in Arizona. Anna is involved in excavations of ancient Hohokam villages, particularly one that also is the site of a nineteenth century homesteader and his wife. A desert ridge beneath rugged Pusch Ridge, in the Santa Catalina Mountains and the city of Tucson are the settings.
The title comes from a children's book by Byrd Baylor called When Clay Sings. In it she says "...every piece of clay is a piece of someone's life. They say it even has its own small voice and sings in its own way...everything has its own spirit--even a broken pot. They say the clay remembers the hands that made it." When Anna handles artifacts, she shares the experiences of those from the past who were associated with the artifacts: a twelfth century Hohokam woman whose village was struggling for survival at the site and the nineteenth century homesteader's wife whose lonely life on the ridge was difficult.
When Anna's abusive husband comes after her, armed and dangerous, she must find the strength and courage to face him and survive.
I have a Pinterest Board (https://www.pinterest.com/buckskinbooks/the-clay-remembers/ ) with images associated with the story and its setting. The images of Pusch Ridge, the jar (the exact design and shape), and the broken sherds are images that might be used in the cover. I can provide images with better resolution as needed. Most of the images that say uploaded by BuckskinBooks (and don't specify other sources in the description) are my own and are available for you to use.
You may also visit my website, http://www.sharonkmiller.com, where you can get more details and also download a preview of the book for more insights.
Throughout the book, eyes are an important meme: sort of the notion that the eyes are the window to the soul and the native American belief that to look into someone's eyes is to trespass upon and/or jeopardize the soul. The abusive husband's eyes are dark and get darker when he's angry and dangerous; the anthropologist Anna is attracted to has green eyes that are welcoming and warm. Hands, also, are a meme--the Hohokam woman's hands as she crafts the pot and Anna's hands as she uncovers artifacts and tries to reconstruct the pot. I don't, however, envision either eyes or hands being the primary image on the cover. More like something that emphasizes Anna, the setting, archaeology, and the artifacts.
I am looking for a full cover for a 6x9 print book with the front design appropriate for the ebook cover.
Possible back cover text:
There are desert hillsides where ancient Indian pottery still lies half buried in the sand and lizards blink at other dusty lizards that were painted on those pots a thousand years ago . . . Indians who find this pottery today say that everything has its own spirit—even a broken pot. They say the clay remembers the hands that made it.
When Clay Sings, Byrd Baylor
When archaeologist Anna Robinson’s husband becomes increasingly violent in his efforts to control and isolate her, she runs away to the Southwestern desert. For Anna, every artifact holds a piece of someone’s life and has a story to tell. Through several artifacts, including a broken, ancient pot, she is drawn through time into the stories of a twelfth-century Hohokam woman and Esperanza Ramirez, a nineteenth-century homesteader’s wife. The women’s stories emerge, and she draws on their strengths, but will it be enough when her husband, armed and dangerous, comes after her?
And what will she do about Nick Anderson, a man who has his own story of pain and sorrow? In spite of her efforts to resist, she is hopelessly attracted to him and fearful of what her husband might do if he even suspects there is another man.
Anna’s story is the eternal story of a woman trying to find her voice and her power and the legacy of the past as a means of understanding the present.