The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
Happy Halloween! The deer hunting season is in full swing for archers in Iowa! This horror masterpiece by prolific author Stephen Graham Jones, a member of the Blackfeet Tribe,(Waaay over there, in lips-pointed NW Montana) would make a fit travel companion for hunters waiting on the cold hunting ground for their dream herd.
Just think twice about what or WHO you're unleashing that arrow into.
The story is about 4 Blackfeet Rez dudes, lifelong friends & hunting buddies who have more than a few stories to tell...most profoundly, that ONE hunting trip. You know, that ONE legendary hunting trip that everyone talks about...or the one that should've been kept secret. The book follows them after that ONE hunting trip 10 years after the fact. Strange occurrences don't just happen, but flesh-tearing, gut-stomping, head-bashing, ones do. The author knows how to build tension and release with the goriest of payoffs. Man!
We start things off with our first Rez dude who is a traveling oil-drill worker in cold Williston, North Dakota. He escaped the Rez and is just passing through after getting his first paycheck, but decides to go out for a drink at the local tavern, and yeah, the place is full of rednecks. How bad would THAT scenario turn out? Not good for him, as the herd of oil rednecks close in to have their way with him. But, there was something else there working against him. Something big. With hooves.
The characters are rich and inhabit the story beautifully. Even the animal ones. Everyone is subject to the madness that ensues; from the mundane(work) to the outrageous.(Kills and even a Mortal-Stakes Rez-ball game?! That's never been done!)
For me, the pages turned with palms sweating, pulse-pounding and stomach churning. Overall, a wild and EDUCATIONAL ride! There aren't a lot of books about the Blackfeet or Crow Native American tribes, or Indians as our 4 Rez dudes would say. This book got a lot of accolades for 2020. The author won the Ray Bradbury Prize for Science Fiction, Fantasy & Speculative Fiction.
Stephen Graham Jones is one of my main influences at this point. I waited to read this for Halloween time. Now, with Native American Heritage Month just over the horizon, I will be diving into his NEW book that just came out: My Heart is a Chainsaw! Sounds sinister!