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Legendary tribal sleuths Leaphorn and Chee are back! The supremely talented daughter of New York Times bestselling mystery author Tony Hillerman continues the popular series with this fresh new Navajo Country mystery-her debut novel-filled with captivating lore, startling suspense, bold new characters, vivid color, and rich atmosphere It happened in an instant: After a brea Legendary tribal sleuths Leaphorn and Chee are back! The supremely talented daughter of New York Times bestselling mystery author Tony Hillerman continues the popular series with this fresh new Navajo Country mystery-her debut novel-filled with captivating lore, startling suspense, bold new characters, vivid color, and rich atmosphere It happened in an instant: After a breakfast with colleagues, Navajo Nation Police Officer Bernadette Manualito saw a truck squeal into the parking lot and heard a crack of gunfire. When the dust cleared, someone very close to her was lying on the asphalt in a pool of blood. With the victim in the hospital fighting for his life, every officer in the squad and the local FBI office are hellbent to catch the gunman. Bernie, too, wants in on the investigation, despite regulations strictly forbidding eyewitness involvement. Her superior may have ordered her to take some leave, but that doesn't mean she's going to sit idly by, especially when her husband, Sergeant Jim Chee, is put in charge of finding the shooter. Pooling their skills, Bernie and Chee discover that a cold case involving his former boss and partner, retired Inspector Joe Leaphorn, may hold the key to the shooting. Digging into the old investigation with fresh eyes and a new urgency, husband and wife find themselves inching closer to the truth with every clue . . . and closer to a killer who will do anything to prevent justice from taking its course.


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Legendary tribal sleuths Leaphorn and Chee are back! The supremely talented daughter of New York Times bestselling mystery author Tony Hillerman continues the popular series with this fresh new Navajo Country mystery-her debut novel-filled with captivating lore, startling suspense, bold new characters, vivid color, and rich atmosphere It happened in an instant: After a brea Legendary tribal sleuths Leaphorn and Chee are back! The supremely talented daughter of New York Times bestselling mystery author Tony Hillerman continues the popular series with this fresh new Navajo Country mystery-her debut novel-filled with captivating lore, startling suspense, bold new characters, vivid color, and rich atmosphere It happened in an instant: After a breakfast with colleagues, Navajo Nation Police Officer Bernadette Manualito saw a truck squeal into the parking lot and heard a crack of gunfire. When the dust cleared, someone very close to her was lying on the asphalt in a pool of blood. With the victim in the hospital fighting for his life, every officer in the squad and the local FBI office are hellbent to catch the gunman. Bernie, too, wants in on the investigation, despite regulations strictly forbidding eyewitness involvement. Her superior may have ordered her to take some leave, but that doesn't mean she's going to sit idly by, especially when her husband, Sergeant Jim Chee, is put in charge of finding the shooter. Pooling their skills, Bernie and Chee discover that a cold case involving his former boss and partner, retired Inspector Joe Leaphorn, may hold the key to the shooting. Digging into the old investigation with fresh eyes and a new urgency, husband and wife find themselves inching closer to the truth with every clue . . . and closer to a killer who will do anything to prevent justice from taking its course.

30 review for Spider Woman's Daughter

  1. 4 out of 5

    Carmen

    This is Anne Hillerman's first attempt at continuing the Leaphorn and Chee series her father started. It's good. It's definitely different than Hillerman's writing: darker, and she writes solely from female Bernie Chee's perspective. When Bernie is washing the blood of Joe Leaphorn off her hands on page ten, I knew we weren't in Kansas anymore. LOL No, this book is a bit darker and more violent than her father's books. It opens with Joe Leaphorn being shot in the head right outside his favorite re This is Anne Hillerman's first attempt at continuing the Leaphorn and Chee series her father started. It's good. It's definitely different than Hillerman's writing: darker, and she writes solely from female Bernie Chee's perspective. When Bernie is washing the blood of Joe Leaphorn off her hands on page ten, I knew we weren't in Kansas anymore. LOL No, this book is a bit darker and more violent than her father's books. It opens with Joe Leaphorn being shot in the head right outside his favorite restaurant. Bernie and Chee and determined to catch the shooter while Leaphorn lingers in CCU on the verge of death. So the book is only told from Bernie's perspective. We get one or two glimpses of scenes where Chee is going solo, but Anne Hillerman is focusing on a female's view here. Perhaps she's a bit nervous about writing men. I can't blame her. I think she made the right choice. The mystery disappointed me. The angle of "Someone shot Joe Leaphorn. Who would do such a thing?" was interesting and a strong start to the book. But it quickly devolves as Anne Hillerman makes it apparent that the bad guy or bad guys are based in what happened in a previous Hillerman novel: A Thief of Time. I would have much rather had Ms. Hillerman dream up a new plot that didn't rely so heavily on the readers knowledge of Book 8. Also, the person who ends up being the bad guy (no spoilers) has done a complete switcho-chango of their personality in Book 8. It was supremely weird. Another thing that annoyed me was the introduction of Bernie's little sister, Darleen. Darleen is portrayed as a high school dropout who gets drunk a lot and doesn't work towards getting her GED. She lives with her and Bernie's elderly mom (who I must say has mellowed out considerably since Tony Hillerman wrote her o.O) and is supposed to be caring for her, but she often leaves and/or gets drunk instead. Bernie thinks her younger sister is a failure who is wasting her life and they get into fights a lot. I really didn't enjoy this subplot. It was horrible. Both Bernie and Chee are hit on by slime: Bernie has a disgusting FBI agent saying stuff to her like "I might steal some ideas from you." [Bernie says] "Stealing, huh? I might have to take you out to lunch as a punishment and give you a lecture about that." Ew. Ew. That's just disgusting. For one thing, they work together. For a second thing, he knows she's married. For a third thing, HE HIMSELF is married... he was just slime. And Chee knows it and he's a little jealous and Anne Hillerman's like "Chee shouldn't be jealous" and I'M like "Chee should pull this slime aside and have a 'little chat' with him." Chee himself is hit on by a slime, a woman who thinks it's sexy to talk to married men like "Oh, you're so cute, perhaps I could consider bending the rules for you, handsome" etc. etc. etc. And I'm like, "WTF?" It's strange to me that neither Chee nor Bernie really call their respective slimes on their respective shit. They don't say, "Don't fucking talk to me that way," or "I'm married," or in Bernie's case, "I'm going to report you if you don't cut it out." Instead, they both just ignore it and let it slide. Perhaps Anne Hillerman is saying it is a cultural thing? Cultural thing or not, I was creeped out by both slimes and wanted both Bernie and Chee to be protected from this kind of behavior. It was just weird. It was just weird how much creepy sexual harassment-like behavior was featured in this novel. Tl;dr - Meh. I could see why staunch Hillerman fans would get upset about Anne Hillerman's interpretations of the world he'd created. But since I've always been "meh" about the Navajo Mysteries, I can't get too upset with what Anne Hillerman has done here. She's not a bad writer. But I was annoyed with some of her plot-decisions here: namely, tying the plot in closely with what happened in a previous book and introducing Bernie's little sister. Now it's on to the last book as I wrap up my Hillerman journey! Rock with Wings is my next stop.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    If you find yourself missing Hillerman country since the master died in 2008, take heart. His daughter Anne is continuing the series with good success in reviving their special flavor. That special mix of a puzzling mystery, showcasing the natural world of New Mexico and Native American spirituality, and colorful characters. She puts her own imprint on the formula by making Jim Chee's wife and fellow officer with the Navajo police, Bernadette Manuelito, the main character. She also adds more hum If you find yourself missing Hillerman country since the master died in 2008, take heart. His daughter Anne is continuing the series with good success in reviving their special flavor. That special mix of a puzzling mystery, showcasing the natural world of New Mexico and Native American spirituality, and colorful characters. She puts her own imprint on the formula by making Jim Chee's wife and fellow officer with the Navajo police, Bernadette Manuelito, the main character. She also adds more humor and sentimentality to the mix with her portrayal of Bernie's domestic life with Chee and her family. The mystery here starts with Bernie witnessing her old boss and Chee's god, Joe Leaphorn, getting shot. As usual with violent crimes, the Navajo police have to work in the shadow of the FBI. Was this a crime of revenge for an old police case of Leaphorn's or the work of a more recent enemy? Unfortunately, he is in a coma and can't contribute to the case. They soon get on the trail of a case Leaphorn was recently working on as a private investigator having to do with the provenance of ancient pottery from the Chaco Canyon archeological site. A number of suspects come into focus, some of whom mysteriously disappear. As with Tony's books, the tale leans more toward a police procedural with a lot of charming human elements than an action based thriller. It works well enough for me. A caveat is that the culprit was a bit eccentric and implausible with respect to motives. I expect the author will improve on this first outing. Previously she has done journalism with an anthropological focus, and after her father died in 2008, she wrote a tribute book combining plot synopses with lots of photos of the landscapes featured in his books.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Ivonne Rovira

    Tony Hillerman, after years of penning excellent mysteries featuring the thoughtful Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn and the impetuous Sergeant Jim Chee of the Navajo Tribal Police, ended his career with the inferior The Shape Shifter. Hillerman’s daughter, Anne Hillerman, continues the series with her first novel. I was doubtful about Spider Woman’s Daughter and the odds that a debut novelist could come close to matching the Edgar Award-winning author, but I’m happy to say that Anne Hillerman has return Tony Hillerman, after years of penning excellent mysteries featuring the thoughtful Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn and the impetuous Sergeant Jim Chee of the Navajo Tribal Police, ended his career with the inferior The Shape Shifter. Hillerman’s daughter, Anne Hillerman, continues the series with her first novel. I was doubtful about Spider Woman’s Daughter and the odds that a debut novelist could come close to matching the Edgar Award-winning author, but I’m happy to say that Anne Hillerman has returned the series to its former glory. In the novel’s first few pages, an assailant shoots the retired Leaphorn and leaves the latter in a coma. Chee and his wife, fellow officer Bernadette Manuelito, unofficially cooperate in uncovering the identity and motive of the would-be murderer. The novel’s style varies only slightly from Tony Hillerman’s own; only a quibbler would bother to complain. Like her father, Anne Hillerman weaves Navajo customs, legends, and history throughout the novel, and I enjoyed learning about the remarkable Hosteen Klah and his weavings. And, as with so many of her father’s stories, Ms. Hillerman’s tale picks up threads from a previous Leaphorn-Chee novel, the Macavity Award-winning A Thief of Time, although you don’t have to have read A Thief of Time to understand and enjoy Spider Woman’s Daughter. Ms. Hillerman pens as suspenseful an ending as many of those of her Edgar Award-winning father. I was initially disturbed that narrator George Guidall, who narrated all of the other Leaphorn and Chee books, wasn’t back on the Audible Audio Edition of this book; however, the new narrator did a competent enough job to resolve my resentment. Spider Woman’s Daughter probably doesn’t rise to the level of Dance Hall of the Dead or Skinwalkers, but the novel is definitely worthy. I hope that Ms. Hillerman proves at least as prolific as her father, who wrote 18 novels. I highly recommend Spider Woman’s Daughter, both to longtime fans and those new to the series.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Cathrine ☯️

    3.25★ This is a daughter’s first attempt to continue on with her father’s legacy; the stories surrounding the characters of Jim Chee, Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn, and Bernadette Manuelito. If you are a Tony Hillerman fan or love the four corners area of the the American Southwest and its rich Native American history I think you’ll enjoy this mystery. Well done Anne Hillerman. You did your dad proud and I enjoyed spending reading time with some of my favorite fictional characters again.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Clark Hallman

    It was very enjoyable for me to read Spider Woman’s Daughter by Anne Hillerman. I was a big fan of the Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee books written by Tony Hillerman (her late father). Since his death I have missed those two Navajo Nation police officers and the unique Navajo/Hopi culture in the Arizona/New Mexico area, which includes Window Rock in AZ and Gallup, Shiprock and Santa Fe in NM. Thankfully, Ms. Hillerman has produced a wonderful new Leaphorn and Chee story that enabled me to once again It was very enjoyable for me to read Spider Woman’s Daughter by Anne Hillerman. I was a big fan of the Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee books written by Tony Hillerman (her late father). Since his death I have missed those two Navajo Nation police officers and the unique Navajo/Hopi culture in the Arizona/New Mexico area, which includes Window Rock in AZ and Gallup, Shiprock and Santa Fe in NM. Thankfully, Ms. Hillerman has produced a wonderful new Leaphorn and Chee story that enabled me to once again enmesh myself in another criminal investigation by the Navajo police and in that unique and fascinating culture. This book focuses on Sargent Jim Chee and especially on his wife, Officer Bernadette (Bernie) Manualito, who is also a Navajo Nation police officer. As Chee and Manualito investigate the shooting of one of their colleagues, Ms. Hillerman methodically takes them through a complex investigation that introduces the reader to many interesting characters and many intriguing aspects of the Navajo culture and the local environment. Chee and Manualito also endure violent physical attacks during their pursuit of the shooter. Ms. Hillerman adroitly resurrected the characters and the culture that her father had created. She also demonstrated the ability to produce an engrossing story with suspenseful action sequences and a satisfying conclusion. She has written a remarkable first novel. I recommend this book to anyone who appreciates mysteries/detective novels, and especially to those who enjoyed Tony Hillerman’s novels.

  6. 4 out of 5

    John

    As a first novel, especially being a mystery, Anne Hillerman's Spider Woman's Daughter is nothing to sneeze at. It's good. It's good enough that I regretted having to put it down when it was time to go bed and looked forward to picking it back up when I got home from work. I read it in only two sittings. I really like the fact that the story is told primarily from the perspective of Bernadette Manualito. It's a welcome twist to Tony Hillerman's fictional legacy. But this novel isn't any better tha As a first novel, especially being a mystery, Anne Hillerman's Spider Woman's Daughter is nothing to sneeze at. It's good. It's good enough that I regretted having to put it down when it was time to go bed and looked forward to picking it back up when I got home from work. I read it in only two sittings. I really like the fact that the story is told primarily from the perspective of Bernadette Manualito. It's a welcome twist to Tony Hillerman's fictional legacy. But this novel isn't any better than good. It's certainly not great. The pacing isn't quite right and there are some glaring narrative glitches - obvious connections that go unmade by the characters for too long, at least one occasion where a character knows something they have no way of knowing. The dialog is a bit ham-handed, especially when Bernie and Chee exchange affections. Let's be honest, though - this novel isn't going to be judged based on its own merits. Ms. Hillerman's first attempt at fiction is going to be judged in comparison to her father's work... And it definitely doesn't measure up. Her characters feel generic, more like character exercises than actual people. In her father's hands, they were always very real, fully believable individuals. I recall that her father's writing had a smoothness to it, a grace and an ease. Her writing, while not clunky in the least, is still noticeably less polished than his. What bothered me the most, though, is the way she handles Navajo culture. Her father had a way of explaining Navajo culture and customs to the reader without ever making us feel lectured at, without breaking the narrative with obvious exposition. Every time his daughter deals with some aspect of Navajo culture, the exposition is obvious and heavy-handed. It always feels separate from the story. Also, she only rehashes Navajo customs that her father explained a long time ago - Navajo Culture 101, all stuff that Hillerman fans already know. Not a whole lot of point to it. To put it another way - it's similar to the difference between hearing an anthropologist describe Navajo culture... and hearing Navajo tell their stories. For her father, Navajo culture was something necessary to the characters and the story - it was only secondarily an interesting cultural milieu. In his daughter's work, cultural milieu is pretty much all it is. There's little in this story that feels like it needs to be Navajo. Even when the characters behave in explicitly Navajo ways, it's always in situations outside of the main plot, it's rarely anything that actively moves the central story forward. With nothing more than minor tweaks, this whole mystery and conflict could be transposed to any other culture and work just as well. So, again - not a lot of point to it. In the end, Spider Woman's Daughter is good. But Ms. Hillerman needs to find her own voice and let her father's creations go.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Kathy Disanto

    As an author, I get the heebie-jeebies whenever I hear someone has decided to continue a series when the original author passes away. Authors - the good ones, at least - are not interchangeable. Take the recent books written under the Robert B. Parker imprint. Not saying they're not good books, but they're not Robert Parker. Parker's voice was his own, and nobody else will ever completely capture it. IMHO, anyway. That being said, I have to admit Anne Hillerman has done a creditable job of taking As an author, I get the heebie-jeebies whenever I hear someone has decided to continue a series when the original author passes away. Authors - the good ones, at least - are not interchangeable. Take the recent books written under the Robert B. Parker imprint. Not saying they're not good books, but they're not Robert Parker. Parker's voice was his own, and nobody else will ever completely capture it. IMHO, anyway. That being said, I have to admit Anne Hillerman has done a creditable job of taking over where her dad, Tony, left off with the Navajo mystery series. I enjoyed Spider Woman's Daughter. It starts off with a bang (literally) and picks up speed from there. So why only 3 stars? Well, I gave Hillerman's latter works 3 stars, too, simply because I prefer the first couple novels to the ones he wrote later. (Personal opinion, so take it or leave it.) I loved the voice of the first few, the way Hillerman seemed to capture the character of the Dineh in the language he used, the pace he set, the songs he included. THAT being said, I never read a BAD Hillerman novel. Good writing is hard to come by these days, so I grab it with both hands wherever I find it, and I found it here. Burned my way through the whole series in just over a week. Pick up the Navajo mysteries. Start at the beginning with The Blessing Way and work your way forward. You won't be sorry.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lata

    3.5 stars. While not great, this is still enjoyable, as the story starts in a shocking way, and we follow Bernie Manuelito as she copes with the incident, and also attempts to find the culprit. I liked Bernie, and I also liked how, unlike many mysteries I've read, she's in a stable marriage, has a loving relationship with her mother, and is good at her job. Bernie also has concerns about her mother's health and her sister's behaviour, and a good portion of the book is devoted to how central fami 3.5 stars. While not great, this is still enjoyable, as the story starts in a shocking way, and we follow Bernie Manuelito as she copes with the incident, and also attempts to find the culprit. I liked Bernie, and I also liked how, unlike many mysteries I've read, she's in a stable marriage, has a loving relationship with her mother, and is good at her job. Bernie also has concerns about her mother's health and her sister's behaviour, and a good portion of the book is devoted to how central family is to Bernie. It's also great to see the members of the Navajo Nation Police work together, and gripe about the FBI. Speaking of which, the FBI agent in charge of the case is a creep, flirting repeatedly with Bernie. I'm pretty sure I'll be checking out more Bernie Manuelito's cases.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Paul-Baptiste

    I really wanted to like this book, and on certain levels I did. Picking up someone else's legacy, even if that someone is your father, is a difficult undertaking. Anne Hillerman tackled the immensely daunting task of writing, as her debeut novel, the 19th book in a very popular series. In the vast expanse that is the Leaphorn/Chee universe, I'd say Ms. Hillerman did as well as her father did on the last three novels, though the books which followed "The Wailing Wind" were not on par with Tony Hi I really wanted to like this book, and on certain levels I did. Picking up someone else's legacy, even if that someone is your father, is a difficult undertaking. Anne Hillerman tackled the immensely daunting task of writing, as her debeut novel, the 19th book in a very popular series. In the vast expanse that is the Leaphorn/Chee universe, I'd say Ms. Hillerman did as well as her father did on the last three novels, though the books which followed "The Wailing Wind" were not on par with Tony Hillerman's earlier works. But those are some big, big shoes to fill. Anne Hillerman's style is different. It is not just a difference of technique of telling a story or a different point of view - she keeps the story centered around Bernie Manuelito - but her writing lacks the lyrical and poetic descriptions that filled her father's books, descriptions of the desert southwest that often filled me - still fill me - with a kind of melancholy joy. Tony Hillerman's books are painted with the beauty of the southwest, the characters a natural and organic part of that landscape, and that is missing from this book. Anne Hillerman also lacks her father's gift at building and maintaining mystery. Even unseasoned mystery readers will figure out who the killer is long before any of the characters figure it out. As others have pointed out, the fact that Jim Chee, who has a well established history of having an excellent memory, seems incapable of remembering details and people from previous books. It is a little exasperating. The ending is sadly unconvincing although thoroughly expected. All that being said, this is not a bad book. The writing is OK, if not as skilled as her father's was, and does not suffer from a lack of editorial polish. If you are a Hillerman fan give it a read, but keep in mind, and make allowances for, Anne Hillerman's fledgling status. If she continues the series - and by all appearances this looks like that is the intention - and hones her craft this may well be a good series as it matures.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Tom Scanlan

    Although she has published a number of non-fiction books, Spider Woman's Daughter is Anne Hillerman's first novel. Some of you may know her as the daughter of Tony Hillerman, famous for his numerous mystery novels, set primarily in Arizona and New Mexico, describing the exploits of two Navajo Indian policemen, Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee. Tony Hillerman died almost five years ago. It must have seemed an enormous and intimidating challenge for Anne to continue these stories. Tony Hillerman fans hav Although she has published a number of non-fiction books, Spider Woman's Daughter is Anne Hillerman's first novel. Some of you may know her as the daughter of Tony Hillerman, famous for his numerous mystery novels, set primarily in Arizona and New Mexico, describing the exploits of two Navajo Indian policemen, Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee. Tony Hillerman died almost five years ago. It must have seemed an enormous and intimidating challenge for Anne to continue these stories. Tony Hillerman fans have been anxiously awaiting this book (publication date is Oct 1, 2013). First impression? I thoroughly enjoyed Spider Woman's Daughter. I had no problem staying with it in spite of competing activities. When I finished reading it, it took me hours to gradually leave the world I experienced while reading her book and return to the here and now. Any novel that draws you into the author’s world that deeply has to be a good novel. My experience in New Mexico certainly biased my enjoyment of this book. Her description of police road trips such as Shiprock to Santa Fe or into the Chaco ruins really hit home. My wife and I have also stayed in Santa Fe enough times to be familiar with the roads and places she described in that town. Anne Hillerman's detailed descriptions provide a very strong sense of place. Anyone who's experienced New Mexico will enjoy this book that much more. I especially liked that Anne chose Bernie as the primary protagonist. I always enjoyed the banter between Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn, but her focusing on Bernie and Chee’s relationship (they are both Navajo police, recently married) added a whole new and welcome dimension. Though some of her dad’s fans might be looking for just a continuation of his Chee/Leaphorn stories in this novel (a few early reviews confirm this), I was delighted that Anne chose your own path. She's managed to maintain the place and feel of her dad’s stories but has done so in her own voice with somewhat different emphases. I hope Bernie continues to be the main protagonist in future novels. I like her mom (traditional Navajo), and her younger sister (not so traditional) is certainly an interesting character. My guess is that Anne Hillerman will pick up a larger percentage of female readers than her dad. I hope so. She sends a good message to young women with respect to their role in what was once mostly a man’s world. As a mystery novel, there were plenty of suspects, false leads, and unanswered questions. I’m not a huge mystery fan, per se, but I found Anne's plots intriguing and compelling. This novel is definitely a page-turner. She provides just enough information to let the reader do some sleuthing on their own, but not so much that the ending is self-evident. Lots of excitement and suspense as she closes in on the ending. The ending was just right, left a good feeling of closure and all-is-well, except for Joe Leaphorn’s fate, which might be the topic of another novel? Her book will surely pleasure lots of readers. Congratulations, Anne, on a great first novel!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lori

    Years ago I enjoyed reading some of the Leaphorn and Chee novels. Anne Hillerman continued her father's series, beginning with this installment. Leaphorn spends most of the novel in the hospital with readers uncertain whether or not he'll survive an attempt on his life. Officer Bernadette "Bernie" Manuelito witnesses the incident and is placed on administrative leave. Her husband Jim Chee is put in charge of the Navajo side of the investigation with the FBI in charge of the case. As they puzzle Years ago I enjoyed reading some of the Leaphorn and Chee novels. Anne Hillerman continued her father's series, beginning with this installment. Leaphorn spends most of the novel in the hospital with readers uncertain whether or not he'll survive an attempt on his life. Officer Bernadette "Bernie" Manuelito witnesses the incident and is placed on administrative leave. Her husband Jim Chee is put in charge of the Navajo side of the investigation with the FBI in charge of the case. As they puzzle through Leaphorn's computer and other case files to seek someone with a grudge, attention focuses on an appraisal Leaphorn performed for the AIRC in Santa Fe--mostly because a report that should have arrived did not. When it did show up, parts of the report were missing. Although the "whodunit" was fairly obvious, I still enjoyed the book. I listened to the audio book, and I appreciated the cadence of the narrator's voice which seemed to work well with the Navajo nation setting. I now want to re-read/read the older series as well as forge ahead with Anne's extension of it. (3.5 stars)

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    I am always skeptical when another author continues a series. The original author in this instance is Tony Hillerman and the series is Leaphorn and Chee. There were 18 novels featuring Lt. Joe Leaphorn and Sgt. Jim Chee of the Navajo Tribal Police. The settings are usually in the Four Corners area of New Mexico and Arizona. However, the author who is continuing the series is his daughter Anne Hillerman. Another factor that I thought added something to her continuing the series is that the centra I am always skeptical when another author continues a series. The original author in this instance is Tony Hillerman and the series is Leaphorn and Chee. There were 18 novels featuring Lt. Joe Leaphorn and Sgt. Jim Chee of the Navajo Tribal Police. The settings are usually in the Four Corners area of New Mexico and Arizona. However, the author who is continuing the series is his daughter Anne Hillerman. Another factor that I thought added something to her continuing the series is that the central character in Spider Woman's Daughter is Navajo Nation Police Officer Bernadette Manualito, wife of Jim Chee. The story opens with Police Officer Bernadette "Bernie" Manualito witnessing the cold blooded shooting of Lt. Joe Leaphorn. Bernie swears she’ll find the person responsible but as a witness is removed from the case and is relegated to finding Leaphorn’s family. Jim Chee is put in charge, but he knows very well that Bernie won’t stand aside, especially when someone she considers an “uncle” is the victim. As the investigation progresses Bernie and Jim discover that an old case Lt. Joe Leaphorn worked on may hold clues to his shooting. A "ghost" from the past. Elements from A Thief of Time play a part in this story. This is Anne Hillerman first work of fiction and I found the literary style somewhat lacking. Or maybe I was just biased from having read several of Tony Hillerman's novels? That is one of the problems with continuing another author's series / characters. The spiritual elements prominent in previous Leaphorn-Chee books are not as evident here. On the positive side is Bernie herself, a young Native American balancing her heritage and family obligations with the demands her job. The author also does an admirable job of describing the locale, especially Chaco Canyon. Several times I envisioned being in New Mexico and seeing the landscape Bernie and Jim saw. I plan to read her next novel Rock with Wings

  13. 4 out of 5

    Karen Cox

    I loved all of Tony Hillerman's books, but like every mystery writer, the early ones were better than the later ones. Still, I never tired of Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee and the rest of the Navajo Tribal Police in Hillerman's world. He was at his best describing the scenery of Northwestern New Mexico, from the terrible roads to the glorious sunsets. His daughter Anne takes up where her father left off. Chee and Leaphorn are back, but this book focuses on Mrs. Jim Chee, Bernadette Manuelito. We get I loved all of Tony Hillerman's books, but like every mystery writer, the early ones were better than the later ones. Still, I never tired of Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee and the rest of the Navajo Tribal Police in Hillerman's world. He was at his best describing the scenery of Northwestern New Mexico, from the terrible roads to the glorious sunsets. His daughter Anne takes up where her father left off. Chee and Leaphorn are back, but this book focuses on Mrs. Jim Chee, Bernadette Manuelito. We get a glimpse of Manuelito's family, especially her mother. Anne Hillerman lives in Santa Fe, and I love Santa Fe and visit there at least twice a year. Much of the action takes place in that city, and I very much enjoyed the fact that she uses real places that I recognized. The plot is logical and organized, and she managed to conceal the perpetrator until two-thirds of the way through the book. There is enough suspense to please those who like scary books, but most of the book is a traditional whodunit. I won't spoil the plot, so I can't discuss specifics. She does achieve the remarkable feat of getting a character trapped without a cell phone in an unforced and logical manner. I highly recommend.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lorraine

    This is my introduction to this series begun by the author’s father, Tony Hillerman. Anne Hillerman’s Spider Woman’s Daughter (Leaphorn & Chee #19) continues with the characters who were created by her father and beloved by many. I now count myself as a devotee of these skillfully written characters who were (Leaphorn-retired) and are (Chee) members of the Navajo Nation Police Force along with Bernadette Manuelito (Chee’s wife) who is also an officer of the Navajo Nation Police Force. The author This is my introduction to this series begun by the author’s father, Tony Hillerman. Anne Hillerman’s Spider Woman’s Daughter (Leaphorn & Chee #19) continues with the characters who were created by her father and beloved by many. I now count myself as a devotee of these skillfully written characters who were (Leaphorn-retired) and are (Chee) members of the Navajo Nation Police Force along with Bernadette Manuelito (Chee’s wife) who is also an officer of the Navajo Nation Police Force. The author does not wait to involve, deeply involve, the reader as on page 3, there is a shooting which Bernie Manuelito sees, and she is the only witness. Bernie races to the crumpled victim immediately checking for his pulse. She finds one and begins to whisper in Navajo, “Stay with me.” to the dear friend and respected older member of the Navajo Nation Police Force. The author provides Native American lore and spiritualism, descriptions of the geographical location-Four Corners-of which the author includes New Mexico, Colorado, and Arizona, and archeology of Native American artifacts. A gripping read! 5 stars.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Amber Foxx

    While continuing the characters and settings from Tony Hillerman’s books, Anne Hillerman has her own style and voice as a writer. I didn’t feel as if I was reading one of her father’s books, but I felt fully at home with her mastery of the series. She has the understanding of Navajo culture that’s central to the stories, and she knows the characters well. Jim Chee, Joe Leaphorn and Bernie Manuelito are familiar and fully developed, with touches ranging from Chee’s off-beat humor to Joe Leaphorn’ While continuing the characters and settings from Tony Hillerman’s books, Anne Hillerman has her own style and voice as a writer. I didn’t feel as if I was reading one of her father’s books, but I felt fully at home with her mastery of the series. She has the understanding of Navajo culture that’s central to the stories, and she knows the characters well. Jim Chee, Joe Leaphorn and Bernie Manuelito are familiar and fully developed, with touches ranging from Chee’s off-beat humor to Joe Leaphorn’s meticulously detailed little notebook to Chee and Bernie’s deep spirituality. Even the secondary characters like Captain Largo are immediately recognizable as the same people from the earlier part of the series. The setting is portrayed vividly— the land, the cities, the small towns, and the people. Accurate details and human touches make the places come alive. The bone-jarring washboard roads going to Chaco Canyon have livestock wandering them. A local can’t give directions for driving in downtown Santa Fe. The groundskeeper Mark Yazzie, a minor character, stood out as delightfully real and original. The tenacious and amusingly ferocious Gloria Benally is another unforgettable supporting character. Even if I weren’t a New Mexican, I think Hillerman’s writing would make me hear the voices, feel the air and see and smell the place, from the plants in Santa Fe gardens to the hot wind in June before the rains come. This book kept me awake at night reading it, and I found myself thinking about it between times, wondering what would happen next. The suspense is effectively structured, but it’s depth of the relationships that make the story powerful. Bernie’s dedication isn’t just to her job, but to people, and that dedication drives the story. It was intriguing to see characters from Tony Hillerman’s A Thief of Time come back. I hadn’t read it for a long time, and think it would have been fun to re-read it before entering this story, but I’m going to rediscover it after instead.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Janice

    Well, I was in tears as I finished this book and read the acknowledgements at the end. What the tears were about I'm not sure; maybe joy that a series I loved has come alive once again, or that "the one who was shot" is still alive. Or maybe it was sadness that I am again leaving behind the world of Joe Leaphorn, Jim Chee, and Bernadette Manuelito, although hopefully not for good, as I thought had happened after the death of Tony Hillerman, the wonderful author who created this series. Or maybe Well, I was in tears as I finished this book and read the acknowledgements at the end. What the tears were about I'm not sure; maybe joy that a series I loved has come alive once again, or that "the one who was shot" is still alive. Or maybe it was sadness that I am again leaving behind the world of Joe Leaphorn, Jim Chee, and Bernadette Manuelito, although hopefully not for good, as I thought had happened after the death of Tony Hillerman, the wonderful author who created this series. Or maybe it was just the poignancy of the words of Anne Hillerman as she discussed why she is picking up this series following the death of her father. Whatever the reason, I loved this book and the opportunity to read of these characters once again. Ms. Hillerman has done an excellent job at picking up and further developing these characters, of continuing her father's weaving of Navaho beliefs and culture into the story, and of incorporating events from past books in the series. As with many inexperienced writer of fiction, this author seems to rush a little as the book nears the end and the mystery is resolved. As more skill with fiction is developed I hope to see the ending a little better timed and plotted. Tony Hillerman had such a talent for writing vivid descriptions of the southwest landscape that I could feel I was there, and for a first time novelist, Ms. Hillerman does quite well with this as well. As she continues to write, I hope that her skill at this kind of writing will approach the level of her father's as well. There is a line near the end of this book as Jim Chee discusses what Joe Leaphorn has meant in his life: he says that Leaphorn taught him "how to walk in beauty despite the evil and disharmony that the world gives us". I hope to read more of these wonderful characters as the series continues.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Janice

    I was going to give this book 2 stars but decided I was allowing the narration of the audiobook to unduly influence my impression of the book. I think Anne Hillerman did a good job of continuing her father's series. I liked that she chose to write it from the point of view of a female character. Write what you know best. The information about Navajo pottery and weaving, as well as the Navajo traditions surrounding death was quite informative and interesting. I was a little lost in the story line. I was going to give this book 2 stars but decided I was allowing the narration of the audiobook to unduly influence my impression of the book. I think Anne Hillerman did a good job of continuing her father's series. I liked that she chose to write it from the point of view of a female character. Write what you know best. The information about Navajo pottery and weaving, as well as the Navajo traditions surrounding death was quite informative and interesting. I was a little lost in the story line. I'm not sure if it was the fact that I prefer something meatier, or if I was so focused on the narrator's performance, that I missed it. Perhaps it was a bit of both. There was a sub-plot with Bernie's mother and sister that took quite a bit of bandwidth, yet was never resolved. I wondered if this story line is to continue in the series. It seemed that there was more plot devoted to Bernie's personal life than to the mystery of who shot Leaphorn. The biggest downfall in the audiobook was the narration. It was unfortunate that the narrator attempted to use Navajo accents. She made the characters sound uneducated with the halting, stilted speech you hear actors affect in the old westerns. One reviewer on Audible stated that he was Native American from Sante Fe, New Mexico (the setting of the book) and that the narration was almost offensive. The other problem with her narration was enunciation. Instead of pronouncing the name Chee as it's spelt, she pronounced it "she". I thought she was reading, "She said..." instead of "Chee said..." I thought she was speaking as a female. Very confusing. I wish I had read the book in print format. I may have enjoyed it better. I still could since I have the Kindle version, but I will give it a pass. Why have hamburger when I could have steak?

  18. 4 out of 5

    Josh

    Tony Hillerman was and still remains my all-time favorite author. His books were introduced to me by an anthropology professor I had in college. I loved them from the minute I picked up Coyote Wind. I immediately devoured every single one of his books. When Hillerman passed away, I was saddened at his passing and at the thought I would never get to read about the adventures of Lt. Joe Leaphorn, Jim Chee, Bernie Manuelito, and the many other wonderful characters that populated these mysteries sit Tony Hillerman was and still remains my all-time favorite author. His books were introduced to me by an anthropology professor I had in college. I loved them from the minute I picked up Coyote Wind. I immediately devoured every single one of his books. When Hillerman passed away, I was saddened at his passing and at the thought I would never get to read about the adventures of Lt. Joe Leaphorn, Jim Chee, Bernie Manuelito, and the many other wonderful characters that populated these mysteries situated in the southwest. It was with much joy when I heard that Tony's daughter was going to pick up the torch and continue the stories of these much beloved characters. At first, I was skeptical that anyone could duplicate the tone, richness, and depth of Mr. Hillerman, but his daughter has done a wonderful job of keeping the legacy alive. It was truly wonderful being immersed once again into the world of these characters and the incredible world they inhabit. Like her father, Anne has a great feel for the these characters and the surrounding land they are a part of. The descriptions of the land and surrounding areas are descriptive and evocative. She understands these characters and who they are. She hasn't reconfigured Jim, Bernie, and others which would have been a sacrilege to the many legions of fans of Mr. Hillerman. She also hasn't skimped on the central mystery which twist and turns until the end. What sets this story off is a shooting in a restaurant parking lot. Who gets shot won't be revealed by me, but it helps propel the story forward as the mystery of who and why deepens and widens. The book is only 300 pages in length, but I loved being back in this world. I hope Ms. Hillerman picks up a pen and continues the adventures of these characters I love.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Bea

    Maybe 3.5 stars It's been a few years since I re-read one of my Tony Hillerman novels so it's hard to accurately compare her style and his. From what I recall of his, based on this book she's more emotional, more about the personal lives of the characters. Once I adjusted my expectations, I enjoyed the story and investigation. Parts of the mystery I figured out early on and parts not at all. I loved the descriptions of the countryside and the atmosphere of the setting was perfect. I felt as if I Maybe 3.5 stars It's been a few years since I re-read one of my Tony Hillerman novels so it's hard to accurately compare her style and his. From what I recall of his, based on this book she's more emotional, more about the personal lives of the characters. Once I adjusted my expectations, I enjoyed the story and investigation. Parts of the mystery I figured out early on and parts not at all. I loved the descriptions of the countryside and the atmosphere of the setting was perfect. I felt as if I there were. Leaphorn himself is a minor character as he spends most of the story injured and in the hospital. The story is told from the POV of Jim Chee and his wife Bernie Manuelito. Hillerman uses the shooting to give us more insight into both of them as well as Leaphorn, and we learn quite a but about them. The story is not only a mystery but a character study and even a bit of a love letter to Leaphorn. The narrator was fantastic. She was a bit better at the womens voices than the mens but she did a superb job of differentiating each character. It was easy to tell who was speaking by her voice and inflections. "Spider Woman's Daughter" was a solid, engaging story that has brought me back to the series after being away for years.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Brett

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Disappointing. Avoid. Mild spoilers follow. Although advertised on the cover as a Chee and Leaphorn novel this is in fact a Bernie Manuelito novel. Chee is reduced for much of the novel to a series of loving platitudes and Leaphorn is comatose. Much of the dialogue is clichéd, the plot unoriginal and at times incredible. In the Tony Hillerman novels the conflict between the Navajo way and the modern way of the white culture surrounding Dinétah (the Navajo homeland) provides the moral core of the no Disappointing. Avoid. Mild spoilers follow. Although advertised on the cover as a Chee and Leaphorn novel this is in fact a Bernie Manuelito novel. Chee is reduced for much of the novel to a series of loving platitudes and Leaphorn is comatose. Much of the dialogue is clichéd, the plot unoriginal and at times incredible. In the Tony Hillerman novels the conflict between the Navajo way and the modern way of the white culture surrounding Dinétah (the Navajo homeland) provides the moral core of the novels, and often the conclusion of the novels is an attempt by Chee and/or Leaphorn to stake out a middle ground between the two that is acceptable to both. Anne Hillerman's insights into Navajo culture, however, feel secondhand and tacked on. She has clearly read all of her father's novels since she constantly makes reference to them, but she either lacks her father's empathy for the Navajo people, or lacks the skill to express it. The final unintended irony is that the plot of Spider Woman's Daughter revolves around some faked Anasazi art works. As there, those familiar with Tony Hillerman's novels will be able to tell the difference.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Renny

    I love this book and am so grateful to Anne Hillerman for continuing the life of her father's characters. Tony Hillerman created memorable characters in Leaphorn, Chee and Bernadette Manuelito. I read everything he wrote and hope that the stories will continue with Anne in the future. I love this book and am so grateful to Anne Hillerman for continuing the life of her father's characters. Tony Hillerman created memorable characters in Leaphorn, Chee and Bernadette Manuelito. I read everything he wrote and hope that the stories will continue with Anne in the future.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Meredith VanOordt

    This is a wonderful continuation of her father's (Tony Hillerman)Leaphorn & Chee series. It felt like comfort food. It fits beautifully. This is a wonderful continuation of her father's (Tony Hillerman)Leaphorn & Chee series. It felt like comfort food. It fits beautifully.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Marlene

    Originally published at Reading Reality Navajo Nation Police Officer Bernadette “Bernie” Manuelito witnesses the shooting of the “legendary” retired Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn while she is talking on the phone with her husband, Officer Jim Chee. Bernie sees a slim white figure conceal a gun and drive away in a battered blue truck as she rushes to the aid of the fallen father figure of the Navajo Nation Police. If the opening scene of this story isn’t a metaphor for the way that Anne Hillerman is brin Originally published at Reading Reality Navajo Nation Police Officer Bernadette “Bernie” Manuelito witnesses the shooting of the “legendary” retired Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn while she is talking on the phone with her husband, Officer Jim Chee. Bernie sees a slim white figure conceal a gun and drive away in a battered blue truck as she rushes to the aid of the fallen father figure of the Navajo Nation Police. If the opening scene of this story isn’t a metaphor for the way that Anne Hillerman is bringing back her own late father’s evocative mystery series following the cases of Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee, I’ll eat my own hat. Instead of following Leaphorn and Chee, with Leaphorn in the hospital in Santa Fe clinging to life, we follow Bernie and Chee, but primarily, and this is where Anne takes the series and makes it her own, we follow Bernie. This allows the author to show us a perspective on life in the Four Corners that is different from what we saw in the earlier series that started with The Blessing Way and ended with The Shape Shifter. Although Bernie is an officer in the Navajo Nation Police, just as her husband is, she also has more traditional roles to play as her mother’s oldest daughter and as the older sister of a young woman who may be falling into alcoholism. The case is a troubling one, and it’s one that Bernie is not supposed to be working on. Seeing a fellow officer gunned down is a traumatic experience. Feeling that if you had been just a few seconds faster you might have prevented the whole sad business leads to an endless cycle of “what ifs”. And it’s not as if there aren’t plenty of potential suspects. Leaphorn had a long and successful career with the Navajo Nation Police before he became a private investigator. Like any good cop, he put away a lot of bad guys, any of whom might want some payback. Or the shooting might be related to one of his current investigations. Or it might be a random cop killer. The worst part of the whole investigation is that the person that every single officer in the Navajo Nation Police usually takes their thorniest cases to is the one man who can’t help them this time. It’s up to Bernie and Chee to discover how well the “legendary” Lieutenant’s lessons have stuck. Escape Rating A+: Striking Leaphorn down at the beginning of Spider Woman’s Daughter was a brilliant move on the author’s part; it clearly hands the reins of the case, and the series, over to Bernie (and Anne). Even though the case turns out to be rooted in Leaphorn’s past, the perspective on solving it needs to be different and new. There’s definitely a new sheriff in town and she’s got one hell of a mystery to solve. Bernie (and the reader) are sure from the beginning that it isn’t any of the easy suspects that the other cops go after. Figuring out who the would-be killer really is (and why they did it) takes the reader on the investigation of Bernie’s life. This one keeps everyone guessing up until the very end. And Bernie has to juggle her two roles in a way that neither Leaphorn nor Chee ever did. Leaphorn was a skeptic about many traditional beliefs, and Chee tried to straddle two worlds, but not in the way of being sandwiched by caring for actual individuals. Bernie’s need to both be “all officer” on the job and still be “traditional daughter” for her mother is a role-split that faces women much more often than men in any culture. I can’t help but think there is some wish fulfillment on the part of the author at the very end of the story. And I understand.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lesa

    Anne Hillerman took a gamble picking up her father's mystery series. Tony Hillerman's Leaphorn and Chee novels were beloved. But, she came up a winner, taking the series in a slightly different direction. Hillerman focuses on Officer Bernadette Manualito, a Navajo Nation police officer, married to Sergeant Jim Chee. Captain Howard Largo invited a number of younger police officers to the Monday morning meetings at the Navajo Inn where the cops brainstormed cold cases over breakfast. Bernie felt ho Anne Hillerman took a gamble picking up her father's mystery series. Tony Hillerman's Leaphorn and Chee novels were beloved. But, she came up a winner, taking the series in a slightly different direction. Hillerman focuses on Officer Bernadette Manualito, a Navajo Nation police officer, married to Sergeant Jim Chee. Captain Howard Largo invited a number of younger police officers to the Monday morning meetings at the Navajo Inn where the cops brainstormed cold cases over breakfast. Bernie felt honored to be included so she drove an hour in on her day off to participate. The meeting was breaking up, but she was the only officer out in the parking lot when someone got out of a car, and shot a retired officer point blank. While Bernie tried to keep him alive, she also tried to remember all the details of the shooter and the vehicle. As the victim clung to life, it would be Bernie's descriptions that would drive the FBI investigation. "There had never been a shooting of one of the Navajo Nation's best-known policemen in broad daylight outside a busy restaurant, with a table full of other cops just a heartbeat away." Flown to a Santa Fe hospital, the victim was a heartbeat from death. As a witness, Bernie was suspended from the investigation, but Captain Largo knew she would do her best to help her husband, Chee, who was put in charge of finding the killer. Strand by strand, Bernie and Chee try to follow the clues, but it's Bernie, who knows the Navajo stories, and honors the legends involving weaving and pottery, "Spider Woman's daughter", who would finally weave together the threads of the crime. It's probably heresy to say I actually enjoyed Spider Woman's Daughter more than some of Tony Hillerman's books. Anne Hillerman manages to write a riveting police procedural while incorporating the Navajo culture and traditions. At times, I found her father's works to be a little too complicated, and I lost the thread. Anne celebrates the beauty of the land and the people through Bernie and Chee's eyes. However, she never loses the thread of the story in the process. Bernie was a part of Tony Hillerman's stories. Now, in Anne Hillerman's Spider Woman's Daughter, she takes center stage as a capable investigator in her own right. I hope Tony Hillerman's fans aren't disappointed. Hopefully, they will be thrilled to see his characters live again through the writing of his daughter.

  25. 4 out of 5

    E.P.

    I've been a big fan of Tony Hillerman's mystery novels ever since I first discovered them 20-something years ago. My grandparents were living in Sante Fe at the time, and the whole family started reading the novels. I quickly devoured the whole series. I was thus a little leery of reading "Spider Woman's Daughter," a continuation of the series by Hillerman's daughter Anne. Later writers so rarely manage to live up to the standard set by the original author of an iconic series. However, "Spider Wom I've been a big fan of Tony Hillerman's mystery novels ever since I first discovered them 20-something years ago. My grandparents were living in Sante Fe at the time, and the whole family started reading the novels. I quickly devoured the whole series. I was thus a little leery of reading "Spider Woman's Daughter," a continuation of the series by Hillerman's daughter Anne. Later writers so rarely manage to live up to the standard set by the original author of an iconic series. However, "Spider Woman's Daughter" proves to be a happy exception to that rule. Anne Hillerman has her father's knack for atmosphere, setting, and evoking a foreign yet familiar culture. As I am reading this entirely from the outside, as it were, I can't speak with too much authority about the actual authenticity of the Hillermans' depiction of Navajo culture, but it certainly *feels" authentic to someone who spends a lot of time reading about and studying other cultures. This is probably a good time to dive into the issue of cultural appropriation, which I'm sure some people are going to raise. Is it okay for someone who is not Navajo to make a lot of money writing about Navajo characters and Navajo culture? Some might say "No," but most of what I know about Navajo culture, and most of the positive feelings I have towards Navajo culture and Native Americans in general, come from reading these books. Translators serve an important purpose, and one could argue that what Tony Hillerman and now his daughter Anne are doing is acting as translators of a sort, bringing Navajo culture to the wider, English-speaking world. Anyway, fans of the original novels are likely to enjoy "Spider Woman's Daughter" as well. It is not, however, just a copy of Hillerman pere's work; Anne Hillerman brings her own fresh voice to the series, focusing more on female cop Bernie Manuelito and the women's side of Navajo culture. Certainly worth reading if you are already a fan, and also worth checking out if you want to read some mystery that's a little bit different from a lot of the mainstream fare out there.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sherri

    This was like visiting relatives you haven't seen in awhile, the familiar but with noticeable changes and differences. Anne Hillerman is the daughter of Tony, she had collaborated with him on a book of photography and wtitten other non-fiction books about the southwest. She is familiar with the landscape and people and has great affection for both. This is her first mystery and she gives it a good try. The characters are much as I remember but some of the dialogue and descriptions feel a bit off This was like visiting relatives you haven't seen in awhile, the familiar but with noticeable changes and differences. Anne Hillerman is the daughter of Tony, she had collaborated with him on a book of photography and wtitten other non-fiction books about the southwest. She is familiar with the landscape and people and has great affection for both. This is her first mystery and she gives it a good try. The characters are much as I remember but some of the dialogue and descriptions feel a bit off. They are more archetypes- noble hero and heroine, fallen king/leader, rustic comic relief, knights/cops and villains in disguise--than real rounded characters. There's some passing of the old guard to the new which I rather liked as well. The actual mystery is revealed about halfway through the book though the characters don't get it, which is a stretch for me, considering these are clever people. But it is resolved and explained in detail near the end though the cause seems a little far-fetched. I was thinking blackmail and then that led to the murder but eh no. It ends with unresolved business and I imagine there will be another book, at least one other book, to answer that particular question. I'd recommend it to Hillerman fans but to remember this is Anne not Tony.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    2018: This book has been on my shelves for a while. I was leery of a Chee mystery not written by TH, but I may end up liking Anne's stories better than her father's. They both have a strong sense of place -- Tony does a better job of capturing the wider landscapes, while Anne does better with the specific locations. Chee and Leaphorn were Tony's main focus, but it looks like Anne is going to use Bernie, which works for me. I've always read this series more for the sense of place, the characters, 2018: This book has been on my shelves for a while. I was leery of a Chee mystery not written by TH, but I may end up liking Anne's stories better than her father's. They both have a strong sense of place -- Tony does a better job of capturing the wider landscapes, while Anne does better with the specific locations. Chee and Leaphorn were Tony's main focus, but it looks like Anne is going to use Bernie, which works for me. I've always read this series more for the sense of place, the characters, and the tidbits of cultural information than for the mystery. However, I noted a couple of important 'clues' that I think should have been acknowledged earlier in the book. If I noticed them, they must have been obvious, maybe too obvious. (Obviously, trying to figure out the mystery before it's revealed by the author isn't the reason I read these books.) 2020: I read this two years ago. Usually I wouldn't pick it up to re-read until more time has passed, but I'm reading the series in order. Refreshing my memory won't hurt. By reading these in sequence, I can appreciate how this story connects with Thief of Time (book 8). I totally missed the connection when I read this in 2018 -- it had been 20 years since I read Thief of Time.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Janet Martin

    While it was a thrill to revisit Hillerman's world of Leaphorn and Chee, Anne has a way to go before her work equals that of her father. She kind of lost credibility early on, with the substitution of "prone" (lying on one's front) for "supine" (lying on one's back)--it's hard to spot a bullet hole on the forehead and look into the victim's eyes when the face is likely planted on the concrete, another unlikely posture after being shot in the face (where was the copy editor on that one?). She is While it was a thrill to revisit Hillerman's world of Leaphorn and Chee, Anne has a way to go before her work equals that of her father. She kind of lost credibility early on, with the substitution of "prone" (lying on one's front) for "supine" (lying on one's back)--it's hard to spot a bullet hole on the forehead and look into the victim's eyes when the face is likely planted on the concrete, another unlikely posture after being shot in the face (where was the copy editor on that one?). She is at times pedantic and still lacks the easy familiarity with her characters and their culture that characterized her father's fiction. There were a few plotting issues, but nothing that turned me away from the book. Still, it's a fine first attempt, and I loved that Anne selected Bernie, a secondary character in the TH series, as her protagonist. Anne has apparently researched women's roles in Navaho society, and even though some of that detail felt forced, I very much liked learning it and felt it enriched the story overall. I look forward to the next book.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sharla

    Anne Hillerman has done a good job of picking up her father’s series featuring Joe Leaphorn, Jim Chee and Bernie Manualito. She draws on the past to weave a new mystery involving one of Leaphorn’s earlier cases. She is fairly successful in painting the picture of the Navajo southwest that made Tony Hillerman’s books so great. I very much enjoyed the focus on Bernadette Manualito (Bernie) and hope that will continue. The plot is weak compared to her father’s early books, although about on par wit Anne Hillerman has done a good job of picking up her father’s series featuring Joe Leaphorn, Jim Chee and Bernie Manualito. She draws on the past to weave a new mystery involving one of Leaphorn’s earlier cases. She is fairly successful in painting the picture of the Navajo southwest that made Tony Hillerman’s books so great. I very much enjoyed the focus on Bernadette Manualito (Bernie) and hope that will continue. The plot is weak compared to her father’s early books, although about on par with some of the later ones. The solution became obvious far before Chee and Bernie catch on, which doesn’t play well. I hesitated about getting this book in fear that it would be a letdown but now am glad I took the chance. There are faults but it is a good solid effort that is close enough to the originals to be satisfying.

  30. 4 out of 5

    clm

    A woman's slant Not only does the author carry on for her father in her own voice, but the story is more Bernie Manuelito than Chee and Leaphorn. Same beloved characters, but a distinctive perspective. Heavier on atmosphere and relationships than plot, but that is not a complaint. This is not imitation Tony, and it shouldn't be. Anne is a new voice for the Fine. A woman's slant Not only does the author carry on for her father in her own voice, but the story is more Bernie Manuelito than Chee and Leaphorn. Same beloved characters, but a distinctive perspective. Heavier on atmosphere and relationships than plot, but that is not a complaint. This is not imitation Tony, and it shouldn't be. Anne is a new voice for the Fine.

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