When a car bomb kills a young man in the Shiprock High School parking lot, Officer Bernadette Manuelito discovers that the intended victim was a mediator for a multimillion-dollar development planned at the Grand Canyon.
But what seems like an act of ecoterrorism turns out to be something far more nefarious and complex. Piecing together the clues, Bernadette and her husband, Sergeant Jim Chee, uncover a scheme to disrupt the negotiations and inflame tensions between the Hopi and Dine tribes.
Retired Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn has seen just about everything in his long career. As the tribal police's investigation unfolds, he begins to suspect that the bombing may be linked to a cold case he handled years ago. As he, Bernadette, and Chee carefully pull away the layers behind the crime, they make a disturbing discovery: a meticulous and very patient killer with a long-simmering plan of revenge.
Writing with a clarity and grace that is all her own, Anne Hillerman depicts the beauty and mystery of Navajo Country and the rituals, myths, and customs of its people in a mystery that builds on and complements the beloved best-selling mysteries of her acclaimed father, Tony Hillerman.
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Von BikerJoe Am hilfreichsten 06.12.2017
Tony Hillerman's Legacy on Shaky Legs
First of all, I want to make it clear that I admire Anne Hillerman's courage to continue her father’s work to bring Navajo folklore, culture and life closer to a wider readership. Anne’s touch is gentle and full of understanding, when she describes the beauty of nature in the reservation and the mystical tribal lore, but she does not hesitate to confront the reader with the harsh and cruel truth of alcoholism, domestic violence and child neglect prevalent in the poverty stricken environment of Navajo-land.
While Anne’s prose is more or less at par with her father’s, she still has to learn, how to draft a plot and create a decent storyline. In this novel the Navajo policewoman Bernadette Manuelito witnesses the explosion of a car bomb in the parking lot at a high-school basketball game. It looks like the intended victim was a tribal mediator, working on a high profile land use project in the Grand Canyon and ecoterrorism or something similar seems to be the likely cause. While the FBI takes over the investigation, Jim Chee is assigned the unattractive job of a bodyguard to the mediator. His wife keeps him company and together they solve the mystery in the end by coincidence.
Of course we are glad to hear from Jim Chee, Joe Leaphorn and Bernadette Manuelito again, but it is painful to loyal readers, how these characters are depicted here. Joe Leaphorn just gives a flash appearance at the end of the story and since he is still suffering from his brain injury, he cannot add much of value to the unravelling of the mystery. Jim Chee, one of the protagonists, became a very linear and simple person. There is not much left of the deep thinker and wannabe medicine man in the Navajo policeman. His personality is mostly reduced to become a loving and caring husband. Bernadette Manuelito is the real protagonist of the story and she is portrayed as a tough young woman, torn between her duties as a policewoman and the obligations of Navajo customs and the demands of her family. While this is quite skillfully described, Manuelito is less convincing, when solving crimes or hunting the bad guys, she appears sometimes outright simpleminded or clueless.
It still is an interesting read and the story has some flaws, but loyal readers will forgive them easily.