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Rock with Wings
Leaphorn & Jim Chee #20
Anne Hillerman

December 2015 / ISBN 9780062270528
Fiction / Mystery & Detective

Reviewed by Linda Morelli


Rock with Wings features married Navajo Tribal cops Jim Chee and Bernadette Manuelito, who visit Chee’s cousin in Monument Valley. They hope to take a small vacation, until Chee is asked to fill in for a few days at a local substation. Chee learns that a Hollywood film crew is making a zombie movie in the area and is sent to find a missing crew member. He locates the woman, but trips over an illegal grave on Navajo land. Certain the film crew is responsible, he arranges to talk to the producer, and finds him dead.

Bernie discovers her younger sister, Darleen, is missing, and fears she may be on yet another drinking binge. Bernie departs to insure her frail mother is safe until Darleen returns, then returns to duty. First, the owner of a car tries to bribe Bernie, then she later discovers the owner’s burned vehicle at the bottom of a ridge. Bernie later meets the owner of a solar company who wants to install photovoltaic panels on an old Navajo man’s land, but the elderly Navajo prefers the old way – living without electricity. Then the old man sees a shape shifter on Ship Rock, known as "Rock with Wings," and fears for his safety.

Anne has continued her father’s tradition of writing outstanding, engrossing mysteries that reveal the tribulations and traditions of Navajo life, but she also adds a feminine touch that kept me highly entertained and wanting more. She included Joe Leaphorn, who is slowly recovering from brain damage inflicted by a crazed female, and I can’t wait until Joe recovers totally.

Filled with twists and turns, great characterization, a captivating and mesmerizing plot and just the right romance, Rock with Wings is a winner in my book.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Skinwalkers #1 (Tony Hillerman)
Dance of the Dead
#2 (Tony Hillerman)
People of Darkness #4 (Tony Hillerman)
Thief in Time #8 (Tony Hillerman)
Skeleton Man #17 (Tony Hillerman)
The Shape Shifter #18 (Tony Hillerman)
Rock with Wings (#1 Anne Hillerman)
Song of the Lion (#3 Anne Hillerman)


Reviewer Linda Morelli is the award winning author of three published romance novels.
Reviewed 2015