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Winter’s Child
Wind River # 20
Margaret Coel

September 5, 2017/ ISBN 978-0425280331
Mystery / History / Native American / Women Sleuths

Reviewed by Linda Morelli

Arapaho attorney Vicky Holden is approached by Clint Hopkins, an attorney who specializes in adoptions, who asks her to be co-counsel on his current adoption case. They meet at a restaurant where Clint explains his case is regarding an Arapaho couple, the Little Shields, who want to adopt Mary Anne, the white baby that was abandoned on their doorstep and who they raised, believing they have been made foster parents. Shortly after Clint hands his notes on the case to Vicky, he is run over by a truck. Vicky is certain his death was murder. But Vicky has a difficult time convincing the authorities. Later, she reads Clint’s notes and begins to investigate the case. The Little Shields reveal that Father John O’Malley is aware of their predicament.

This case parallels the true story of Elizabeth Fletcher, aka Lizzie Brokenhorn, a white child who was two when she was captured and subsequently traded to the Arapahos, and lived out her life on the Arapaho reservation. Father John O’Malley’s young niece, Shannon O’Malley, is researching the lives of Elizabeth and her sister, and seeks her uncle’s help in interviewing Lizzie’s descendants. As she explains, old books and documents can sometimes be wrong. As Father John points out, interviewing one of her descendants may lead to information from others. Soon Shannon falls in love with an Arapaho herself.

This was one of the best of Margaret Coel’s releases, though all of her books in this series are outstanding. I love the way she brings alive the Arapaho way of life through her vivid descriptions, the way she interweaves a tight, suspenseful plot with past history, and draws parallels to enrich her story and enhance the mystery. The fact that Vicky and Father John care deeply for each other only adds to the charm of this exceptional series.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Wife of Moon #10
Eye of the Wolf #11
The Drowning Man #12
Killing Custer #17
The Man Who Fell from the Sky #19
Winter's Child #20

Reviewer Linda Morelli is the award winning author of three published romance novels.
Reviewed 2017