Buffalo Bill’s Dead Now

Margaret Coel. Berkley Prime Crime, $25.95 (304p) ISBN 978-0-425-25271-0
In Coel’s solid 16th Wind River mystery (after 2010’s The Spider’s Web), attorney Vicky Holden and Catholic priest John O’Malley must sort through a tangle of greed, deception, and murder. While the star-crossed pair yearn vainly for each other, they also both love the Arapaho Indians, who need their advice and protection. The theft of important relics—the regalia that Chief Black Heart wore in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show in the late 19th century—on their way to the tribe’s museum is devastating to older people on Wyoming’s Wind River reservation, but Vicky and Father O’Malley discover not only that there are thieves who’d kill for collectible artifacts but also that some younger Indians lust after money more than their cultural heritage. Like Tony Hillerman, Coel respects the traditional Native American worldview, and the setting and characterization are strong enough to compensate for some plotting lapses. Agent: Rick Henshaw. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 07/09/2012
Release date: 09/04/2012
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