A new favorite series for me. Father John O'Malley, priest of the mission at the Arapaho Wind River Reservation, and attorney Vicky Holden, team up to find the parents of a "Lost Bird"; a woman seeking her birth parents. Although the elders insist that no Arapaho infant was ever given up for adoption, an old conspiracy is uncovered by O'Malley and Holden when they discover a long-buried secret.
When a frail Father Keenan is murdered at St. Francis Mission, the community is shocked. Who would kill a priest. The anser may date back to 1964 the year he abruptly left his post and dozens of arapaho parents were told their newbords had died from contaminated water.
If you like the John O'Malley series, you'll enjoy this tale.
Excellent read. Keeps you in suspense.
If you love crime fiction with a strong Native American element and you haven't read Margaret Coel's Wind River mysteries, I urge you to get your hands on them and start reading. (They're best read in order, so begin with The Eagle Catcher.) I learned about them while attending an author event in which Coel appeared with William Kent Krueger. I got the first book in the series, and I haven't looked back since.
Coel is a wonderful stylist. The Wyoming landscape, the history of the area, the characters, the mysteries, and the Arapaho culture are all woven into seamless narratives that are difficult to put down. Everything she writes has such a ring of truth to it, and so much heart that readers learn the Arapaho Way whether or not they realize it.
At the heart of The Lost Bird is a heartbreaking subject that's dealt with honestly and with great sensitivity. As the story unfolds so do more facets of the characters' lives. Father John and Vicky both have emotional revelations to deal with, and Father John also has a surprise visit from his niece Megan which will also cause him great soul-searching.
There are always many layers to these Wind River mysteries, but Coel is the type of writer who keeps a smooth pace while never wasting a word. It's taking me a while to get through this series, but that's my plan. I aim to savor each and every book... and to mourn when I finally read the last installment, Winter's Child.