Rated 5 stars ***** ARC. ebook. HarperCollins Publishers. To be published August 25, 2020.
The author is an enrolled citizen of the Sicangu Lakota Nation.
Life on the Lakota Indian Reservation where Virgil Wounded Horse has lived for almost all of his life is tough. Jobs are hard to find and poverty is everywhere, while many work hard to pass on their beliefs and traditions. Virgil is a loner, who turned his back on Lakota traditions many years ago. Because the federal government doesn’t allow tribal police forces to pursue justice on most types of reservation crime, Virgil is the long arm of the law for those who want their own revenge.
Ben Short Bear, tribal councilman, contacts him to find out who is helping a tribal member bring heroin onto the reservation. At first Virgil is not interested in the case but, when his nephew Nathan overdoes and is later kidnapped, he is ready to knock in some heads. Though a drug cartel and local gang are also involved, he is not dissuaded. Though Virgil has always done things his way, he is soon going to learn he will have to make room for his Lakota people and traditions if he hopes to find Nathan before it’s too late.
Heska Wanbli Weiden’s description of reservation life and the helplessness of the tribal police are very realistic. I’m glad he mentioned that the Lakota despise the French derisive term “Sioux,” as I didn’t know that and know it’s important to be educated on correct tribal name terminologies.
Highly recommended for Adults.
I received a digital advance reading copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.