Grandmother Spider (Charlie Moon Mysteries) and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy Used
$4.00
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Used: Very Good | Details
Condition: Used: Very Good
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Grandmother Spider: A Charlie Moon Mystery (Charlie Moon Mysteries) Hardcover – January 9, 2001


See all 6 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$5.00 $0.01
Paperback
"Please retry"
$6.54
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"
$46.00

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Hero Quick Promo
Browse in Books with Buzz and explore more details on selected titles, including the current pick, "Spectrum" by Alan Jacobson (available in paperback and Kindle book).

Product Details

  • Series: Charlie Moon Mysteries
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; 1st edition (January 9, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380977222
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380977222
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,106,701 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

It's pretty well understood that mysteries come with an implied contract. Authors, for their part, promise to deliver plots and resolutions, however improbable, with some degree of plausibility. Readers, in turn, give an author a 50-50 shot by turning down the gain on their innate disbelief. Then along comes Grandmother Spider and all bets are off.

Southern Ute tribal policeman Charlie Moon has a problem. It seems that, thanks to the imprudent squishing of a wayward spider, the giant spirit Grandmother Spider has risen from her cave below Navajo Lake and exacted revenge on humanity by snatching the research scientist William Pizinski and Tommy Tonompicket, the local carouser with whom he was drinking. Charlie knows this because the squisher was Sarah Frank, the 9-year-old ward of his elderly, shamanic, and altogether elsewhere aunt, Daisy Perika. And Daisy got it straight from a dwarfish spirit called a pitukupf.

The pitukupf half smiled, exposing jagged rows of yellowed teeth. He vigorously stirred the crooked stick in the embers under the apparition, kindling new flames. The dwarf ceremoniously lifted the helical baton like a conductor calling dark chords from an unseen orchestra. The glowing sparks swirled up the column of heated air... and the hideous image of the eight-legged creature followed. As it ascended, the grayish form took on the bright orange hue of the yellow flames beneath it. The apparition grew larger, the entrapped man struggled vainly in hope of release. And screamed piteously for someone to help him.
And that's not the half of it. Before long, Charlie and his friend, Granite Creek Police Chief Scott Parris, are up to their gun belts in national security issues, mutilated bodies, hideous creatures roaming the countryside snatching sandwiches from the mouths of 80-year-olds, and the bizarre reappearance of the two missing and now-amnesiac tipplers. And, happily, that's still not the half of it.

Grandmother Spider is Charlie Moon's sixth, strangest, and perhaps funniest airing (from 1994's The Shaman Sings through 1999's The Night Visitor). With mystery and mysticism enough to satisfy Hillerman's fans, and humor, memorable characterization, and good writing enough to satisfy everyone else, who's going to quibble about a silly old contract? -- Michael Hudson

From Publishers Weekly

Mysteries with Native American characters seem to come in two varieties: tough-minded and realistic (think Tony Hillerman's Leaphorn/Chee stories and Peter Bowen's books about Montana's Gabriel Du Pr ), or softer and sillierDlike Doss's Shaman series about Ute policeman Charlie Moon and his dotty old aunt, Daisy Perika. Number six in the series is even sillier than its predecessors, setting up a ludicrous situationDthree men savagely attacked by what seems to be a giant spider or an alien space vehicleDand then daring the reader to come up with some other, more rational explanation. Moon, a slow-moving giant who would rather eat or fish than do the heavy lifting involved in police work, doesn't add much energy or action to the story: he spends most of his time jousting verbally with his aunt Daisy about her visions and beliefs or romancing a totally unlikely Hollywood glamour girl dropped into the scene to extend a thin story. And while it's true that most readers won't guess what it was that actually attacked rocket scientist William Pizinski's pickup truck on the shore of Navajo Lake in Colorado, it's also true that not many of them will stick around until the dumb little secret is revealed. (Jan. 9)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

JAMES D. DOSS is the author of twelve Charlie Moon mysteries, two of which were named one of the best books of the year by Publishers Weekly. Originally from Kentucky, he divides his time between Los Alamos and Taos, New Mexico.

Customer Reviews

Great writing, good laughs are part of this very entertaining story.
Georgia
This book was full of his create character building, and melding everything together into great plot.
Rhandom
I sat down to read for a few minutes and didn't stop until I'd finished the book.
booksforabuck

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By wendybird on May 27, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Finally...a mystery so outrageous it seems unsolvable without breaking the bounds of reason...and a solution outrageous enough to work!! I loved how this book mixed elements of a modern police/detective story with Native American shamanism and even a little of the supernatural. I also enjoyed the characters, especially the old shaman Daisy ,a cranky, fiesty woman with a shrewd sense of humor, and Charlie Moon, the soft-spoken Ute police chief with an appetite for unhealthy food.
After Daisy's young charge Sarah smashes a spider with her biology book, the Shaman tells her of how Grandmother Spider will rise from Navaho Lake to revenge her spider people. That very night something carries off two men...and then the strangely mutilated body of a third victim is found--the victim of a spider attack? Soon, Charlie Moon finds himself sorting through evidence so bizzare, even HE is starting to believe in Grandmother Spider...
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Hortensia on June 15, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
This was interesting, and very readable. I enjoyed it, although I still say the author uses foreshadowing way too much. But in this story, the author plays some really good tricks on the reader - Charlie Moon keeps repeating there is a reasonable explanation for everything, but we get sidetracked by the metaphysical - the visions, shamans, symbolism, dreams and so on. I usually can figure out just about any mystery, but the author had me on this one. I was surprised at the resolution of the mystery, and had a good laugh, too.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on January 9, 2001
Format: Hardcover
On April first on Colorado's Southern Ute Reservation, Shaman Daisy Perika's young ward Sarah Frank steps on a spider, but fails to perform the proper ritual to ward off trouble. According to legend, Grandmother Spider will emerge from her cave under Navaho Lake looking for Utes to eat. That night, the two women observe an egg-shaped object with appendages emerges from the vicinity of the lake.

Later two men disappear. One is found up a tree and the other is aimlessly wandering in the nearby woods. Neither one can explain what happened to them, but both are hospitalized. Rumors quickly run wild feeding fears, but acting Police Chief Charlie Moon thinks a more mundane explanation is behind the recent happenings. Adding to the consternation is the fact that one of the hospitalized men, a scientist with a top-secret clearance, vanishes without a trace. Charlie sees a link between the men, the strange creature, and a clandestine military operation in the area. However, to prove the connection, especially since he prefers mooning about his new love interest, seems impossible.

Throughout most of GRANDMOTHER SPIDER mystery, the reader never knows whether he or she is dealing with the everyday physical world, a supernatural occurrence or two, or both. That is the beauty of this tale. The reservation combines the traditional tribal ways with a modern lifestyle. Especially intriguing is the premise that the two often fail to merge even as the tribe overall has adapted its culture to an encroaching twenty-first century environs. Readers will find Charlie, Daisy, and Sarah remain a delight as they retain their freshness in this caper that matches the best of Tony Hillerman.

Harriet Klausner
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By "sunnykissed" on December 10, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book isn't hilarious. It's just plain old good and funny. What a group of characters and a story that had me baffled until the very end and I'm really good at figuring these out! Can't remember when I've had such a fun time with a book. Mr. Doss' asides about what his characters are thinking are often very revealing about human nature and enough to keep you giggling to yourself. Good light reading.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By booksforabuck VINE VOICE on February 25, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Something strange has happened but Acting Chief Charlie Moon doesn't believe Grandmother Spider really has climbed out from her caves under the lake to rip a man's head off and sink her fangs into his body. It's just that the evidence seems to point that way.
GRANDMOTHER SPIDER provides a view of Native American reservation politics and a number of truly engaging characters, especially Charlie Moon. Moon won't play the political games but would certainly like to be made permanent chief. His knack for justice goes beyond the book--he'll do what he thinks is right. Of course, this may also get him in trouble.
Author James D. Doss writes with a light style and I found myself laughing out loud over the dialogue. GRANDMOTHER SPIDER is definitely a little over the top in a number of ways. Is it just me, or was the whole comando thing just a little much?
I sat down to read for a few minutes and didn't stop until I'd finished the book.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By mizkiz on June 21, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Magic, mystery, crime, inticate plots dosed with laugh-out-loud humor set on the Ute Indian reservation in SW Colorado. James Doss' characters are wonderful. Charlie Moon is big, brave, smart and lovable (the big jug head) and always gets his man (or woman). Even though he's a lawman, he doesn't always follow the law (but no one is supposed to know that). His elderly Aunt Daisy Perika gives a wonderful depth with her cantankerous wit and shamanistic dreams. When she teams up with her friend Louise-Marie, you know trouble's on the way. Part mystery, part western, part spooky, always tricky. Once you start this series, you'll hunger for more.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?