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Tony Hillerman

Ancient Truths, Modern Evil, in Hearts of the Missing

in Thrillers by

The spirit of Tony Hillerman hovers over every page of Carol Potenza’s debut novel Hearts of the Missing (Minotaur), so it’s no surprise that, when still unpublished, it won the 2017 Hillerman Prize for the best first mystery set in the Southwest. Hillerman’s spirit is far from the only ghost that haunts it, however. The book features Nicky Matthews, a woman police sergeant for New Mexico’s Fire-Sky Pueblo, the Tsiba’ashi D’yini. She is also a Bureau of Indian Affairs-trained federal agent often brought in as a liaison with the Office of Medical Investigation on matters of cultural sensitivity. But Nicky is not a Native. She is white, and she knows that her training is no replacement for all she has yet…

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