The third book of the Navajo Mysteries finds Navajo Tribal Police Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn working very hard to avoid being the safety officer for a visiting Boy Scout troop. He looks into the death of Hosteen Tso and the assistant to Margaret Cigaret, also known as Listening Woman, while she was doing a listen to find the cure for his sickness. Add to that an old case of bank robbery with helicopter assistance and the appearance of a violent man with a huge dog, and there is danger that only Joe Leaphorn would show up in the middle of. It was a good book, and the ending was good, but it did leave me with some questions about how it would be wrapped up and explained in the police report.
33. Tony Hillerman, People of Darkness, 282 pages, Mystery, Paperback, 1980 (borrowed from the library).
The 4th book of the series introduces Sergeant Jim Chee of the Navajo Tribal Police. The case involves a wealthy uranium tycoon’s stolen box of personal mementos. The most obvious lead is the grandson of a past leader of the local peyote church. While searching for him, Chee meets Mary Landon, a teacher at the grade school. He takes Mary along on his searches for clues, partly because he likes her, partially because he is learning to understand white people in his personal conflict to join the FBI or become a singer for the Navajo, but mainly to protect her from a hired hit man who kills the thief and recovers the box, only to have Chee and Mary witness his escape. The key to this odd crime is an oil drilling accident many years earlier. I like Jim Chee as a character, and the book kept you moving quickly along to the finish.