13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Eloquent narrative outweighs slow plot,
This review is from: The Ghostway (Mass Market Paperback)Tony Hillerman's book are often marketed as quick paperback reads. Sure they are mysteries at heart but they are more than mysteries. Hillerman asks the reader to think.
In this book, Hillerman is pondering heavy questions. The first underlying theme is whether Chee should leave the reservation for a job with the FBI. Since Chee does lots of driving in the book, we share many hours of internal debate on the issue. The second and more subtle theme involves aging and wisdom. While the core of the mystery involves middle-aged folks, many of the most valuable witnesses are very elderly. They are the people many investigators would ignore. I found the Chee's interviews with the seniors to be top flight writing.
The actual plot is ok. Chee has to spend more time in Los Angeles that I enjoyed. Still, city life for Native Americans is a reality. There were a couple of annoying redundancies as certain plot points were revisited. The survivalist bad guy was pretty over the top and his excesses were quite unnecessary.
Bottom-line: Not my favorite Hillerman but not a waste of time by any definition. For those who like to read their books in order, this is number six in the greater Chee/Leaphorn series.