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The Sinister Pig Mass Market Paperback


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTorch; Reprint edition (October 26, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061098787
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061098789
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 4.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #912,137 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Tony Hillerman is a national treasure, having achieved critical acclaim, chart-topping popularity, and a sterling reputation as an ambassador between whites and Indians. Fortunately, he's also still a marvelous writer, much imitated but never equaled. The Sinister Pig--his 16th novel to feature Navajo cops Joe Leaphorn and/or Jim Chee--isn't his best book, but it's still a pleasure from the first page to the last. Its plot is almost too complex to summarize, involving the mysterious shooting of an ex-CIA agent, financial shenanigans around oil-and-gas royalties, disappearing congressional interns, exotic pipeline technology, and the cross-border trade in both drugs and illegal aliens.

Officer Bernadette Manuelito has left the Navajo Tribal Police for the U.S. Customs Service, patrolling the barren borderlands of southern New Mexico. There, her curiosity and smarts land her in a growing peril that provides much of the book's suspense--and invokes the protective instincts of Sergeant Chee, who still hasn't quite been able to tell her how he feels about her. It's impossible not to care about Hillerman's exquisitely drawn repertory characters, nor to overlook the pleasures of his beautifully crafted and relaxed-seeming prose. In the midst of these virtues are a few warts: several sections are a little flat or awkward, and the villainous plutocrat behind it all is short on plausibility (though lots of fun to hate). But even a lesser Hillerman is still a richer, more satisfying read than most authors' top stuff. --Nicholas H. Allison --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Bestseller Hillerman's 16th Chee/ Leaphorn adventure offers deeper intrigue and a tighter plot than his previous entry, The Wailing Wind (2002), in this enduring series. When the body of an undercover agent, who's been looking for clues to the whereabouts of billions of dollars missing from the Tribal Trust Funds, turns up on reservation property near Four Corners, Navajo cop Sgt. Jim Chee and Cowboy Dashee, a Hopi with the Federal Bureau of Land Management, investigate. But the book's real star is officer Bernadette "Bernie" Manuelito, Chee's erstwhile romantic interest, now working in the New Mexico boot heel for the U.S. Border Patrol. The miles have only strengthened her feelings for Chee-and vice versa. A routine patrol puts Bernie on the trail of an operation involving some old oil pipelines that connects to the Four Corners murder. Meanwhile, Joe Leaphorn is checking into the same murder from another direction. The three lines converge on a conspiracy of drugs, greed and power, and those who most profit, including the "sinister pig" of the title, will stop at nothing to keep it a secret. With his usual up-front approach to issues concerning Native Americans such as endlessly overlapping jurisdictions, Hillerman delivers a masterful tale that both entertains and educates.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Tony Hillerman was the former president of the Mystery Writers of America and received its Edgar® and Grand Master awards. His other honors include the Center for the American Indian's Ambassador Award, the Silver Spur Award for the best novel set in the West, and the Navajo Tribe's Special Friend Award. He lived with his wife in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Customer Reviews

If you have not read Hillerman, don't start here - please.
Pop S
With "The Sinister Pig," unfortunately, it seems Mr. Hillerman is growing tired of his Leaphorn/Chee series.
Michael B. Scott
I agree with most all of the criticism of this book and I don't care.
foltz85

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

44 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Bruce Trinque VINE VOICE on May 7, 2003
Format: Hardcover
"The Sinister Pig" is another in Hillerman's long-running series of mystery novels centering upon the now retired, but hardly inactive, Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn and Sergeant Jim Chee of the Navajo Tribal Police. This time the plot is in part inspired by the continuing scandal over the mismanagement - embezzlement and outright theft may be closer to the point - of funds due to Southwest Indian tribes for oil, gas, and coal taken from their reservations under Federal auspices. An investigator sent by a powerful Washington, DC, senator to nose around turns up dead with a bullet in his back. It is Jim Chee's case - or at least as much of the case as the FBI will let him handle - but it is immediately clear that somebody with high connections back in Washington wants the investigation squelched.
Meanwhile, Jim Chee has something else on his mind. Bernadette Manuelito, formerly an officer in the Navajo Tribal Police, has taken a new job with the Border Patrol, 200 miles away, just when Chee was working up his resolve to make his personal interest clear to her. And now Bernie has stumbled on some mysterious goings-on along the Mexican border that might tie in to the unsolved murder back home.
Hillerman departs somewhat from his usual format by writing several chapters from outside the viewpoint of Leaphorn and Chee (and Bernie Manuelito). Unlike in most Hillerman novels, we very quickly learn who the bad guys are, although a mystery remains until the final chapters as to exactly what they are doing. In general Hillerman's villains are not especially villainous, their motivations often arising from quite ordinary circumstances that lead them into crimes they never intended. But in "The Sinister Pig" the chief villain is as close to plain evil as Hillerman is ever likely to get.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By marzipan on May 21, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I've fallen in love with Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee in all the other books involving one or both of these Navajo Tribal policemen. It's usually so satisfying to see the way the Legendary Lieutenant approaches a problem, especially in contrast to his younger colleague. So I've always must see what they're up to, and so should most readers who consider the mystery capable of plenty of literary satisfaction. As always, Hillerman's descriptions of the Navajo Nation landscape are wonderful; so real you can almost feel the charged air as summer thunderstorms build, hear water racing down the wash, see and touch the earth.
Unfortunately, this latest book strays too far from home. Hillerman doesn't capture the beauty of the more southern desert and Apache country. While Bernie Manuelito is usually somewhat endearing, in this book her behavior is almost too wide-eyed to be plausible, especially considering she's a cop. And Chee and Leaphorn, as well as the ever-appealing Cowboy Dashee, seem like minor characters in what turns out to be a fairly stock spy/thriller caper, with a bad guy so bad he's almost comic. And the ending--please Mr. Hillerman--you've got to keep Jim Chee forever lost and questing! If he grows up, the world will grow old...
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By dikybabe on May 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
It is always wonderful to open another Hillerman and follow the latest law enforcement adventure in the Four Corners. Meeting up with Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn is just like meeting up with old friends. And reading this newest Hillerman brings one quite up-to-date with each of the men, their current love life, and their efforts to solve a mystery of international intrigue.
This is not Hillerman's best novel, but one can forgive him because he does present a fast page turner and educates along the way. Chee's romantic interest, Bernie Manuelito has gone to work for the Feds in the Border Patrol, and unlikely as it may seem, she becomes linked to a murder in the Four Corners.
The pig involved takes on several meanings, but would be especially familiar to anyone in the pipeline trade. The double meaning, of course, indicates the greed that leads to corruption within governmental bodies.
This tale involves Washington, D. C. subterfuge, and enlists the Navajo Tribal Police, U. S. Bureau of Land Management, U. S. Border Patrol, the F. B. I., and the Office of Homeland Security. Hillerman skillfully sets his tale in the midst of the real world worries of the 21st century.
Will "third time's charm" work for Chee in his stumbling romance with Bernadette? The romance and the mystery intertwine for a comfortable quick read and satisfying solution.
Can't wait for the next Hillerman in order to meet up Leaphorn and Chee once more. If you are a Hillerman fan, this is a must read.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Dave Schwinghammer VINE VOICE on May 13, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I hadn't been expecting to hear from Tony Hillerman again so soon. It hasn't been that long since THE WAILING WIND.
This one is a very rapid read, with much of the action happening away from the Navajo reservation (Always a bad move, Tony). The plot centers around the murder of a retired CIA operative who's investigating the theft of billions of dollars in Indian oil, gas, coal, and timber royalties for a United States senator.
Bernie Manuelito has taken a job with the border patrol to get away from Jim Chee, her pushy boss, when she stumbles across a suspicious construction project in the middle of the desert. Unknowingly, she has become embroiled in a smuggling operation and her picture is being spread around by Mexican drug traffickers as a DEA agent to be on the lookout for. Meanwhile, Chee is pining away for Bernie, trying to think of a reason to go get her and ask her to marry him. This is where Joe Leaphorn enters the picture. He gets out his maps and is able to tie the original murder scene to some abandoned oil and gas pipelines leading from Sonora, Mexico, to the site of the murder. The Sinister Pig of the title is a device used to clean the insides of the pipelines. Joe quickly grasps the possibilities.
Hillerman uses multiple viewpoints to help us follow the action. There's a billionaire drug smuggler, his former CIA pilot (the most interesting character in the book), and a corrupt border patrol supervisor and of course our friends Joe, Jim, and Bernie.
I'd be surprised if this book is over 70,000 words it reads so fast.
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