Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Killing Custer (Wind River Reservation, #17)” as Want to Read:
Killing Custer (Wind River Reservation, #17)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Killing Custer (Wind River Reservation #17)

3.85  ·  Rating Details ·  464 Ratings  ·  70 Reviews
The whole town of Lander has turned out for the big parade celebrating the start of the new rodeo season. The main spectacle this year is the appearance of Colonel Edward Garrett—a spot-on impersonator of General George Armstrong Custer—and a troop of men acting as the ill-fated Seventh Cavalry.

The problem is they are being followed by a group of Arapaho warriors from the
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published September 3rd 2013 by Berkley
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Killing Custer, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Killing Custer

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
I liked the premise of this mystery, that a Custer impersonator gets shot and killed during a Wyoming tourist re-enactment of the Battle of the Little Big Horn and that Arapahoes participating in the staged battle are assumed guilty out of historical revenge. Father John O’Malley, who ministers to the tribe on the nearby Wind River Reservation, and Vicky Holden, a Native American attorney are motivated to investigate in order to assure that justice is served with the right culprit prosecuted.

Killing Custer by Margaret Coel is a contemporary mystery that deals with historical re-enactment. I actually know a number of medieval re-enactors and a few Victorian re-enactors , but all these people are hobbyists. There isn't one of them who truly believes that he or she is a historical personage re-born. I will not say that such a thing is impossible. Reincarnation is a cherished belief of Hinduism, Buddhism and a number of other religions. Yet in the context of historical re-enactment, a ...more
Shirley Schwartz
Oct 24, 2013 Shirley Schwartz rated it really liked it
I love Margaret Coel's Windy River mysteries. Father John and Vicky are two of my favourite modern-day sleuths. Their relationship is always a big part of the enjoyment that I get from these books. In this book we have an historical happening that is meshed with a modern-day mystery. The book begins with Col. Edward Garrett who is a General Custer impersonator. The whole town of Lander is out to see the parade where General Custer and his 7th Calvary march in full regalia. This is the beginning ...more
Angie Taylor
Dec 03, 2016 Angie Taylor rated it really liked it
Author changes sex of the horse Brownie from a female to a male. I double checked.
Sep 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jeanie

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Jeanie

How could I have missed this great series? Killing Custer is Margaret Coel’s 17th novel in the Wind River Mystery series, and I loved it! She imparts the history of the Arapaho and Cheyenne tribes of the 19th and 21st centuries with an obvious appreciation of and respect for their cultures, particularly as they endured grave dangers and continual challenges.

Killing Custer opens to a present day rodeo parade in Lander, W
Oct 17, 2015 Sharonm rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, review-copy
This is the 18th book in the mystery series starring Father John O’Malley and Arapahoe lawyer Vicky Holden. Although it was the first of the series I’ve read, it will not be the last. Coel incorporates a lot of history into the book, as well as something of an understanding of the way that reenactors can take on the personalities and causes of their muses. In this book, General Custer is played by a commander from the Iraqi war (Edward Garrett), and his historical sidekicks are played by his ...more
May 22, 2015 Jim rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
This is the second Father John/ Vicky Holden novel I've read from Margaret Coel. Without question "Killing Custer", was far better than first. In this saga a reenactment of George Custer and his 7 th Cavalry, ride into town to take on the Indians in a rodeo show. However, just as show is unfolding Custer is shot dead off his horse. Edward "George Custer" Garrett has been murdered in plain sight. Did the Indians kill Custer again ? How was it pulled off ? A murder in broad daylight with the whole ...more
Dec 14, 2013 Ed rated it liked it
#17 in the Wind River series. This picnic seems to have too many ingredients. The main theme is the ill-advised visit by a Custer impersonator to Lander, WY, adjacent to the Wind River Arapahoe Reservation. His anti-Indian rhetoric in a preceding speech has inflamed Indian feelings and the young men prepare a humiliating demonstration against Custer for the parade. OK - I can't understand why killing Custer 150 years ago wasn't enough or why white military re-enactors would want to re-live the ...more
Gloria Feit
Apr 28, 2014 Gloria Feit rated it really liked it
The team of Arapaho attorney Vickey Holden and Father John O’Malley are confronted with an unlikely bit of history in this latest Wind River mystery: A reenactment of the killing of Col. George Custer, originally put to death at the Battle of Little Big Horn many decades earlier. Edward Garrett, enacting the role of Custer, leads a group of “cavalrymen” in a parade down Main Street, when a band of Indians surrounded the column, encircling it with a challenge ride to demonstrate that the Indians ...more
Bruce Snell
Sep 13, 2013 Bruce Snell rated it it was amazing
Book number 15 in the Wind River series by Margaret Coel - 5 stars. During a parade to celebrate the opening of the rodeo season the reenactor portraying General Custer is murdered - both Father John and Vicky Holden become involved in the investigation. Father John is mostly attempting to reassure the families of the Indians involved that the police will seek justice and find those who actually committed the crime, not simply arrest the closest Indian. Vicky is drawn into the investigation by ...more
Sep 05, 2013 Diana rated it really liked it
I really like the "Wind River Mystery" series by Margaret Coel However, in this book, I thought the plot took a long time to truly develop.
It is the start of rodeo season in Lander, Wyoming. There is a parade and the highlight this year is the appearance of an actor portraying General George Armstrong Custer and a group of men
acting as his troop. Does this set well being so close to the Wind River Reservation? Not really.
In the parade a group of Arapahoe warriors are following the calvary. D
Steven Howes
Sep 16, 2013 Steven Howes rated it really liked it
It has been awhile since the author's last Wind River Mystery so it was good to once again follow the adventures of Father John O'Malley, priest at St. Francis Mission and Vicky Holden, an Arapaho Indian attorney. As in previous works, the author weaves an interesting mystery into a mix of historical fact and Native American culture. This story involves the murder of a person posing as General Custer in a group of Little Bighorn re-enactors. Unfortunately the murder takes place during a rodeo ...more
Oct 13, 2014 April rated it liked it
This was an OK mystery, though I did get tired of the basic "Native American always good; white man always bad" theme. The one exception to the rule is the Catholic priest (kind of a surprise, because usually in these books the Catholic priest is bad too), who apparently in a former book fell in love with a Native American female lawyer (who is of course, all good). The basic plot is that an Iraqui War veteran who makes his living going around to reenactments playing General Custer is killed in ...more
Stephen Campbell
Sep 06, 2013 Stephen Campbell rated it it was amazing
The book begins with the murder of General George Custer, but it's not a historical mystery. The murder victim is actually a reenactor, and the 7th Calvary is riding in a parade near the Wind River Reservation. A big part of the books charm is the similarity of the present day murder, with what actually happened to Custer.

The book is populated with wonderfully drawn characters and a setting that's so real I feel like I've been there. I particularly enjoyed reading and learning about the Arapaho
Oct 26, 2013 Cheryl rated it really liked it
This is one of my favorite series, because Margaret Coel honors both Fr. John and Vickie for being who they are, and maintaining their ethical moorings. This story has a reenactor representing Custer being killed in a parade in Lander, during a display of daring riding by the local Indian riders --- and of course, Indians are the 1st thought of as guilty. A young woman who has left the rez and tied her dreams to a white lawyer finds out about heroes with feet of clay and pays a high price. But ...more
Mar 10, 2015 James rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries
During the rodeo parade in Lander, a Custer re-enactor is shot during an Indian dare ride. Shortly afterwards a local attorney goes missing along with a large sum of money. Both men knew each other. Is there a connection? The law is convinced that the Indians did it, but Father John is not convinced. Along with the assistance of Vicky, another attorney, they investigate both acts. Before they are finished, the unlikely connection is discovered, and the real villain is brought to justice. An ...more
Jane Healy
Once again Margaret Coel masterfully weaves historical facts, Arapahoe culture, and modern day characters and problems into an interesting mystery. This time, re-enactors make this scene seem real: General George Custer comes back to Indian Territory with his soldiers, and Arapahoe men race their horses around the soldiers, causing chaos. The next thing anyone knows, the Custer re-enactor has fallen and died. But who shot the gun? Meanwhile, another lawyer in town disappears, and his ...more
May 22, 2015 Vicki rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery-thriller

When Custer and the Seventh Cavalry come to town in the form of a reenactment group, a group of young Arapahos decide to teach them a lesson by riding around the group like in the old time. A killer takes advantage of the situation and shoots the Custer impersonator. Father John and Lawyer Vicky Holden are drawn into the investigation that follows. It turns out that the fake Custer (who thinks he’s a reincarnation of the original) has a few enemies of his own and they aren’t all American Indians
Jan 24, 2014 Janet rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery, read-2014
Ok, so I haven't read the previous 16 in the series, perhaps sometime I will read some of them in order to understand more fully the relationship of Father O'Malley and Lawyer Vicky Holden.
I am very fond of the Tony Hillerman series and like his daughter's first novel in the continuation of the series. This "Wind River" series doesn't compare to Hillerman's. There is not enough detail about Native American life woven into the series for me. Coel's writing style is very predicable chapter after c
Catherine Woodman
Feb 27, 2014 Catherine Woodman rated it liked it
The book opens with a re-enactment related to Custer--and the man playing Custer is killed and the Native Americans get blamed--Vicky is hired by the relatives of the dead man nad is unavailable to represent tribal members, so that is a different twist--overall this has been a consistant series, and this is no difference from that. The thing I found interesting was the depiction of the enactment mentality--which is very much to be wrapped up in it in an almost delusional way. While I have no ...more
Sep 08, 2014 Lynne rated it liked it
I enjoy Coel's mysteries- especially since I lived in the Wind River Mountain range & am familiar with the Wyoming communities & terrain she references. My lifelong interest in Native American culture & history is fed by her pointing out traditions both past & current of the Arapahoe and other tribes. Having read all Coel's Vickie & Father John mysteries I feel like they are almost friends. this particular story was enjoyable but not one of my favorites.
Oct 02, 2013 Bruce rated it liked it
MOS. Coel pretty much follows her outline for most of the Wind River Mystery Series. It gets a little tiresome. The story is OK and gives some information about the original battle of the Little Big Horn and Custer's personality, but it didn't really grab me. I gave it a three stars because it is an easy read, but not one of the best.

Lynn Lerch
Jan 27, 2014 Lynn Lerch rated it it was amazing
I have never read a boring Wind River Mystery. This story is about what happens when a re-enactment of Custer's last battle comes to town. There is a parade and the character playing Custer is shot dead.
Father O'Malley and his friend Vicky Holden are out to find the killer and see that the Indians are blamed. A fast read full of history.
Jan 18, 2016 Pam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Margaret Coal hasn't disappointed me yet. Vicki and Father O'Malley work together to solve several crimes. The series is set on the Wind River reservation and gives good insights into Native American concerns/issues. Add to that a bit of history about General Custer, and you have an engaging mystery.
Fredrick Danysh
Aug 05, 2014 Fredrick Danysh rated it really liked it
Father O'Malley is watching the Wind River Rodeo parade when the leader of a group of Seventh Cavalry re-enactors is shot in front of everyone. The Arapaho who were riding around the group are blamed. A popular lawyer disappears. Father O'Malley and lawyer Vicky Holden attempt to sort out the truth to prove two young Indian men innocent. Coel's work compares favorably with that of Louis L'Amour.
Dec 07, 2013 Roberta rated it really liked it
I love the wind River mysteries. I like the characters and the romance that we know can go nowhere but still can hope. I love Vicky and Father John but do not like Adam Lone Eagle. I would like to see him gone. Maybe not dead gone but just gone.
Gilbert Baron
Jun 20, 2015 Gilbert Baron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Write some more please

This last volume is both modern, current, and traditional. I will say it relates current times to the past. I hope there is more on the way. Please consider releasing the part of the series in ebook format for at least the Kindle.
Eleanor Kuhns
Dec 16, 2013 Eleanor Kuhns rated it really liked it
I love Coel although I wish she hadn't made the relationship between Vicky Holden and Father John quite so impossible. This is a good read in the series and anyone who enjoys Tony Hillerman would enjoy these.
Jun 04, 2014 Merelyn rated it it was ok
Found this author at library one day, did not particularly care for this bk. A bit shallow, & I am not a highbrow! Just a run of the mill little mystery, set in modern times. The info about the Indians was OK. Beach read!
Jan 18, 2014 Donna rated it really liked it
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Cry Dance
  • Mourning Dove (Ella Clah, #11)
  • Concrete Desert
  • Gold Digger (Diana Porteous, #1)
  • A Discount for Death (Posadas County Mystery, #2)
  • Death and the Language of Happiness (Cecil Younger, #4)
  • Judgment of the Grave
  • Prayer of the Dragon (Inspector Shan, #5)
Margaret Coel is the New York Times bestselling, award-winning author of the acclaimed novels featuring Father John O'Malley and Vicky Holden, as well as several works of nonfiction. Originally a historian by trade, she is considered an expert on the Arapaho Indians.
More about Margaret Coel...

Other Books in the Series

Wind River Reservation (1 - 10 of 21 books)
  • The Eagle Catcher (Wind River Reservation, #1)
  • The Ghost Walker (Wind River Reservation, #2)
  • The Dream Stalker (Wind River Reservation, #3)
  • The Story Teller (Wind River Reservation, #4)
  • The Lost Bird (Wind River Reservation, #5)
  • The Spirit Woman (Wind River Reservation, #6)
  • The Thunder Keeper (Wind River Reservation, #7)
  • The Shadow Dancer (Wind River Reservation, #8)
  • Killing Raven (Wind River Reservation, #9)
  • Wife of Moon (Wind River Reservation, #10)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »