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Dear Friends,

Thanks for your interest in my books chronicling the adventures of the Burns brothers. CROSSING THE LINE, the fourth book in the series, was released this past summer to some very kind reviews. I hope that those of you who have read it agree with the critics. The paperback version will be released in March 2005.

For me, though, its reception paled in comparison to the delight I took in the birth of my second son (which is why I skipped a book tour this year), and the good times I had with my three-year-old camping in the canyonlands of Utah and the mountains of Wyoming.

Aside from enjoying my growing family, I've managed to finish the fifth book in the story of the Burns brothers. Called BADWATER, it should be released in May 2005.

Now I'm working hard on a sixth book for 2006, a "stand-alone," so I can give the Burns bros a well-deserved break. This new novel will be similar in its orientation toward suspense and the outdoors, but features big mountain extreme skiing in addition to climbing, and settings in Alaska, Chamonix, and the Himalayas. If it turns out as well as I expect, it will take readers higher and further out on the edge than any of my previous books.

Research is proving to be a lot of fun, including a little cliff-hucking (jumping) lesson two weeks ago in the midst of three feet of fresh powder in the Wasatch. Don't ask how, but I somehow managed to end up suspended from two small pine trees by just my skis, dangling upside-down above a small drop. It seemed to take my brother, Wayne, a long, long time to stop laughing and pick his way down the cliff to release my bindings. The ensuing head-first freefall was mercifully short and deep.

I hope that you, too, are getting outside to enjoy the winter (but perhaps not as intimately as I did).

Happy holidays and may you have a joyous new year. - Clinton

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