There is a legend of the New World that has endured for centuries: the strange, tragic tale of a King, a Witch . . . and a blue gem of intoxicating beauty said to grant extraordinary power to whoever possesses it. Archaeologist Juana Sanchez, convinced that she's discovered the key to unlocking the mystery of the fabled Queen Jade, ventures into the Central American jungle alone—just ahead of the relentless pounding fury of Hurricane Mitch. When the terrible storm is over, Juana is gone, and an ancient, long-buried jade mine has been uncovered in the mountains of Guatemala, giving new hope to all obsessed seekers of the legendary stone. But it is a different obsession that plunges Juana's daughter—scholar and bookseller Lola Sanchez—into the remarkable adventure of a lifetime. For only by following the Queen Jade's perilous, cursed trail can Lola hope to find her vanished mother . . . if it isn't already too late.