Thursday, January 26, 2017

Review: Song of the Lion (Leaphorn & Chee #21) by Anne Hillerman

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Print Length: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (April 11 2017)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers CA
  • Language: English

Book Description

 A deadly bombing takes Navajo Tribal cops Bernadette Manuelito, Jim Chee, and their mentor, the legendary Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn, back into the past to find a vengeful killer in this riveting Southwestern mystery from the bestselling author of Spider Woman’s Daughter and Rock with Wings

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 multi-million-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, bestselling mysteries of her acclaimed father, Tony Hillerman.

About the Author

Anne Hillerman's newest book,"Spider Woman's Daughter" debuted at number 10 on the New York Times Best Seller list. The novel continues her father Tony Hillerman's popular Jim Chee/Joe Leaphorn series. The book followed "Tony Hillerman's Landscape: On the Road with Chee and Leaphorn," with photos by Don Strel of the country the renown mystery author visited in his novels. Her cookbook, "Santa Fe Flavors: Best Restaurants and Recipes" received the New Mexico Book Award for the best cookbook of 2009. Anne's other books include "Gardens of Santa Fe," "Ride the Wind, USA to Africa," and "Children's Guide to Santa Fe." When she's not writing, Anne enjoys cooking, writing restaurant reviews for the Albuquerque Journal, and skiing.

My Review

Song of the Lion is the 21st book in the Leaphorn and Chee series initially written by the legendary Tony Hillerman and now by his daughter Anne Hillerman. Thank you Anne for continuing this series.

I have read every book in this series. I love the Southwest and it was Tony Hillerman who initially introduced me to the glories of the Navajo Reservation. I liked that most of Song of the Lion is set in Tuba City where many of the earlier books had taken place. And it was a timely book in that developers were seeking to have a resort right on the Grand Canyon on the Indian lands there. It was also an interesting book as it explored the interconnecting issues and interest groups that all have a stake in the area.

As Anne Hillerman has continued the series, the voice of the stories is that of Bernie, a woman. Bernie is married to Chee and Leaphorn still figures prominently but Bernie is star. The stories now have a different voice, a gentler voice that has added interest and of course a woman's point of view. There are as always continuing characters like Largo and Cowboy Dashee but there are new characters as well. And a mountain lion.

The Song of the Lion centers on the hearings into resort development in the Grand Canyon and the mystery begins at a basketball game in Shiprock. The hearings mediator's car is blown up. And a young man is killed by the explosion. Could the explosion be a warning to the mediator?

Great story. Highly recommend Song of the Lion.

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