Sunday, 13 September 2009

Review – Tony HILLERMAN – “The Blessing Way”

Publ: 1970
My copy – kindly given to me by Canadian Chickadee
ISBN: 978 0 06 100001 0
Genre: Crime fiction
Pages: 306p
Recommended by another blogger
Rating: ***** **

What led you to pick up this book?
Recommended by another blogger, it sounded like an unusual form of crime fiction.

Describe the plot without giving anything away.
Jo Leaphorn is a Navajo Tribal Policeman and the action takes place on the Navajo Reservation. Many folk blame a supernatural killer when a young man is killed and Leaphorn finds himself in pursuit of a Wolf-Witch.

What did you think of the characters and style?

This was an eye-opener to me as I learned much about a wholly different culture which lives on in the USA. The characters and style were nothing overly special – solid and down-to-earth - but the plot was good and the setting fantastic.

What did you like most about the book?
The setting.

Was there anything you didn't like about the book?

Thoughts on the book jacket / cover.

Would I recommend it?
Yes as a crime thriller or to anyone interested in learning about the Navajo culture.

“Begay had deliberately postponed thinking about this, because the Navajo Way was the Middle Way, which avoided all excesses – even of happiness.”
“But Navajos didn’t hurry. In fact, there was no words in the Navajo language for time.”

TONY HILLERMAN was born in Oklahoma in 1925. He joined the US Army in 1943 and won the Silver Star, the Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster and the Purple Heart after being wounded. After the war he attended the University of Oklahoma and worked as a journalist, eventually becoming editor of the New Mexican. In 1963 he went to graduate school at the University of New Mexico and joined the journalism faculty there in 1966. His first Navajo mystery, The Blessing Way, was published in 1970. He died in 2008.

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