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Death Walker: An Ella Clah Novel (Ella Clah…
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Death Walker: An Ella Clah Novel (Ella Clah Novels) (original 1996; edition 1997)

by Aimee Thurlo (Author)

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971215,520 (3.29)2
On a Navajo reservation someone murders one of its "living treasures," that is people who hold and teach the cultural and religious wisdom of the tribe. The case is taken up by tribal policewoman Ella Clah, formerly of the FBI.
Member:mfagan
Title:Death Walker: An Ella Clah Novel (Ella Clah Novels)
Authors:Aimee Thurlo (Author)
Info:Forge Books (1997), Edition: Reprint, 352 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:***
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Death Walker by Aimée Thurlo (1996)

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Not horrible, but not terribly good either.

I bought several Aimée and David Thurlo books in the recent past, but this was the first one I have read. I don’t know what I expected other than better. Most or all of the characters came off being one-dimensional and rather boring. The story follows the same patterns of others in this genre, far too many in my opinion, whereby the hero or heroine solves most or all of the mystery / crime on their own and ends up in most or all of the tight spots all on their own. It’s the... I know everyone is out to kill me but I’m going to go in blind without backup because that’s what I do best!

The good was the Navajo culture and a few bits of history of the Navajo People that tracks throughout the book, and the problems that arise when trying to police crimes within in the modern or Western world; cultural behaviors and issues that most people would not know about. That said, the same themes were repeated ad nauseam every few pages... for 380 pages. I sort of got it the first time. I didn’t need the exact same thoughts repeated by every single person we met hour after hour, day after day during the investigation.

One problem I always seem to have with this type of novel is that you’re in a setting where everyone knows everything about everyone else... yet no one knows anything about the ones committing the crimes, or if they do they’re not saying, because, you know, somehow it’s part of their culture. Any mundane thing can happen anywhere on the reservation spread out over like a million square miles, and everyone everywhere knows everything about it within minutes. But a murder or two, and / or criminals trying to wipe the Navajo People off the map, well, that's a different story. Because of our culture we just don’t talk about that sort of thing... which is really helpful too since that allows the investigation to drag on FOREVER.

For me, as the investigation dragged so did the book. They threw in a few red herrings that didn’t deepen the mystery so much as to just reinforce what I thought was bad about all of the above. I hope the other books I picked up by the Thurlo’s are more enjoyable. ( )
  Picathartes | Mar 8, 2021 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Thurlo, Aiméeprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thurlo, Davidmain authorall editionsconfirmed

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On a Navajo reservation someone murders one of its "living treasures," that is people who hold and teach the cultural and religious wisdom of the tribe. The case is taken up by tribal policewoman Ella Clah, formerly of the FBI.

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