Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Sinister Pig (Navajo Mysteries, #16)” as Want to Read:
The Sinister Pig (Navajo Mysteries, #16)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Sinister Pig (Navajo Mysteries #16)

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  3,687 ratings  ·  205 reviews
The victim, well dressed but stripped of identification, is found at the edge of the vast Jicarilla Apache natural gas field just inside the jurisdiction of the Navajo Tribal Police, facing Sergeant Jim Chee with a complex puzzle.

Why did the Washington office of the FBI snatch custody of this case from its local agents, cover it with secrecy, and call it a hunting accident
Hardcover, 228 pages
Published May 6th 2003 by Harper (first published January 1st 2003)
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 The Sinister Pig, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Sinister Pig

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

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Roberta Marro
Ah, hard to believe that we will get no more of Tony Hillerman's wonderful books. I thought this was one of his best--full of double meanings, teaching my about oil pipelines and the uses to which they could be put. I used to love to listen to Hillerman's books when traveling through New Mexico because he brought that country and the native american people who live there to life so beautifully, while weaving in a mystery that caught you up in the story. Easy reading, but more complex than they a ...more
Overly complex. Felt like an attempt to update the series and infusing with Mexican border issues, Senate committees and drugs. Not nearly enough landscape. An attempt at multiple perspectives again, which was used to create tension and move the plot forward, since solving the murder wasn't possible after the FBI took over. Temporary physical estrangement between Chee and Bernie. Not one of Hillerman's better books.
Carl Alves
This novel starts off with Navajo Tribal Police sergeant Jim Chee finding a corpse in tribal lands near a natural gas field. The FBI is trying to take over the case, saying that it was a hunting accident. Joining Chee on the case is the familiar characters of Joe Leaphorn and Bernadette Manuelito. Conspiracies abound, and not surprisingly, the US government aren’t necessarily the good guys.

This is a solid novel, perhaps a little better than some other Hillerman novels I have read. The plot is
At first I thought that the pace of this novel lagged, but the last half of the story moved at a satisfying tempo to the conclusion. Conversely, Officer Manuelito is an interesting character in the first half of the book, then dissolves into a mere damsel in distress at the end.

I am looking forward to jumping ahead to Anne Hillerman's sequel to discover how Manuelito develops.
Another Navajo mystery novel. This one gets into Washington politics and explores how egomaniacs come to control the nation. It makes very clear how the "War on Drugs" only benefits the drug czars. As fiction, there is a black and white difference between the good guys and the bad guys, but I think that there is a lot of truth to the way the system functions. He also made me aware of how natural gas and oil are being somehow siphoned away from Navajo land without paying the legally required roya ...more
Mark Robertson
This was not my favorite in this series for a couple of reasons. The main one is that I don't find the bad guy's character at all believable. Secondly, there's something of a Donna Leon element of pervasive corruption and an alliance of sorts between the government and professional criminals.
That said, it's a Tony Hillerman novel featuring both Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn. Leaphorn's retired, but is asked to look into a murder that may or may not have something to do with billions of dollars in r
Orville Jenkins
Sergeant Jim Chee of the Navajo Tribal Police and his retired partner Joe Leaphorn investigate related cases involving people and drug smuggling across the US-Mexico border and Indian oil-gas production fraud.

Their relationship with the Federal authorities again focus on the arrogance and incompetence of the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the FBI. Their colleague Bernie Manuelito, formerly with the Navajo Tribal Police and now with the Border Patrol, is instrumental in discovering the tie between
Ethan Casey
The Sinister Pig is a typically exciting and enjoyable installment in the late Tony Hillerman's series of mystery novels set among the Navajo and Hopi of the desert Southwest. I've been reading them out of sequence, which is a little unfortunate if you want to remain surprised by developments in the personal lives of Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn and Sergeant Jim Chee, and The Sinister Pig (2003) is a relatively late installment, so consider reading earlier Hillermans first. But each Hillerman novel c ...more
The sinister pig refers to a being who has eaten his fill but doesn't allow others to eat too. Sound like any Republicans you know? I'm rather late coming to Hillerman's mysteries. I find them adequate as a quick read.
John Yingling
Jim Chee, Joe Leaphorn, Bernadette Manuelito,and Cowboy Dashee are among my favorite characters in all literature. And I have a deep respect for the Navajo people and their traditions. Someday I want to visit the parts of New Mexico and Arizona in which these characters live and work. All this is because of the first-rate storytelling and writing talents of Tony Hillerman. The Sinister Pig is a prime example of all I have mentioned. Frankly, I love this series. I was very saddened by the passing ...more
Hillerman was one of my favorite authors. Not only could he tell engaging stories with challenging themes, but his landscapes came alive enough to be characters in those stories. I'll miss new Chee and Leaphorn mysteries.

But this was not one of his best. Sometimes it read as if someone else had written for him, with a lot of explanation and little action, except the Leaphorn sections. The plot was typical Hillman but none of the characters really seemed to care about it. They just kind of happe
Four Corners is a good geography question, at least for those of us who live east of the Mississippi. Can you name the four states, clockwise? It’s been awhile since I’ve read a Tony Hillerman mystery. I remember I was saddened to learn of his death in 2008. Truly, a great mystery writer – 200 plus pages, big print, really just long short stories, but great to read in between the heftier stuff. “The Sinister Pig” is one of Hillerman's best. Classic “Legendary Lieutenant” Joe Leaphorn. If you’ve ...more
Elizabeth Mosley
An OK Leaphorn/Chee mystery. There isn't much from Leaphorn in this book, and Bernie gets a larger role. I did find myself getting annoyed that the two female characters in this novel seem to portrayed as somewhat weak. The only time we interact with Professor Bourbenette in the book, she's pouring coffee for Leaphorn and Chee. Also, Bernie seems to be shown as having run away from her life as Navajo Tribal Policeman (partly because Chee is a dunderhead), and at the end of the book, she seems to ...more
Johanna Gail Tongco
Sinister Pig is a good book written by Tom Hillerman. It looks like a typical book but it actually conveys the prevailing corruption in the system. With this book, you will get to know Bernie Manuelito and Sgt. Jim Chee who were able to uncover the death behind the mysterious man named Carl Mankin, which whose real name is Gordon Stein.

Gordon Stein, aka Carl Mankin, was out to do some undercover business but then he was shot before he was able to get some worthy information to the one who hired
Not one of the best of Hillerman's Navajo series. Bernie is now in U.S. Border Patrol. On the job she unknowingly caught the attention of drug dealers. They feel she is undercover for Navajo Police and decided to kill her. Her Boss takes her picture which is shown around the drug dealers. Bernie's friend call Joe Leaphorn who puts the situation in perspective. He tells Jim Chee to go and bring her back. Chee asked Cowboy Dashes who is now working in law enforcement for the BLM to drive him there ...more
Morris Graham
This Hillerman installment of the Chee-Leaphorn detective series starts with Chee finding a body on tribal lands near a natural gas field. The FBI, as usual, is trying to take over the case. LT Joe Leaphorn and office Bernadette Manuelito join him in his attempt to unravel the mystery. The usual Navajos vs FBI interference over juristictional issues applies. This one explores border issues with Mexico, corruption, and drug running. Oh yes, after years of SGT Jim Chee nearly getting hitched to th ...more
Bernell Spicer
The desert southwest is a primary character in many of Tony Hillerman's mysteries, which is one reason I generally enjoy them. I grew up on the Western slope of Colorado, where the red soil is dotted with scrubby green trees, and snow peaks tower all around. It was truly a paradise. And yet the country that speaks to my soul is a little further west and south: Canyon country, the area around the Navajo and Hopi reservations, and south, on into the Sonoran desert. This area, the Four Corners regi ...more
Bob Gooch
Good old-fashioned crime novel set primarily in southwestern New Mexico involving murder, border issues, corrupt local cops and federal politicians, drug smuggling, etc. The main protagonists are folks you can root for, and the bad guys are, well, you'll have to read the book. Hillerman is a good writer. He weaves complex stories, and resists the temptation to get down in the gutter.

It's funny but in re-reading the book this time, I tried to imagine who I would get to play each of the main char
A satisfying mystery for fans of Hillermans series on Navaho detectives Leaphorn and Chee, the 16th of 18 with one or both detectives. Alas, there will be no more given Hillermans death in 2008. Here Jim Chee becomes intrigued with a case of murder of a well-dressed outsider. In the first pages Hillerman has the reader inhabit the mind of this oil industry problem-solver engaged by a powerful Senator to investigate the siphoning off of production from the numerous wells operated on federal and I ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Margaret Murray
A man hands an envelope to another man across a table---So begins The Sinister Pig (2003) by the late Tony Hillerman, famed mystery writer of the Southwest. The beginning is very simple–a man hands an envelope across the table of a small cafe. The setting is Navajo Country but it could be anywhere, anytime. How mundane. How ordinary. How easy to read. This vintage Tony Hillerman beginning fascinates me–it’s deceptively simple. By the end of the first page, we are in the midst of a high-level cor ...more
Jesse Whitehead
When a man with a fake ID is found murdered on the Navajo reservation people immediately think he was investigating the oil pipelines. When Jim Chee starts looking into it he finds out drug smugglers and politicians are involved and Bernadette Manuelito, now working as a Border Control Agent is right in the middle of a big cover-up.

Tony Hillerman has a decidedly readable style. I especially like his way of making each character feel like an old friend. As soon as Chee shows up I know just what h
Meg Mcaneny
Hillerman takes us all the way south to the boot heel of New Mexico in this clever tale. The story starts out with quite a bit of detail about a character who looks like he's going to be important- a bit of a false trail. Yes, you'll get Legendary Leaphorn, Jim Chee and Bernie Manuelito, but also some powerful stringpullers in Washington, DC, exotic game animals, drug smuggling, and more than a few surprises. Turned out to be a better read than I at first thought.
So, I Read This Book Today
I normally enjoy Mr. Hillerman's works, and have a collection I like to return to over and over. This one, sadly, went straight into the box to go to the used book store. The editing was so horrible as to be a joke. It makes one wonder if his writing has always been this bad, and some UberEditor has been working magic for all these years, or if he was just under a huge rush to meet contractual obligations and couldn't be bothered to actually write a decent book.

It is also disappointing in that t
I have always enjoyed Tony Hillerman's work. Driving through Colorado listening to Tony's story was fabulous. The mountains were snow covered and the sky was blue made the story more interesting. The characters are unique in their cultures which makes Hillerman's work so interesting. Learning about the various Native American Tribes as well as murder and mystery is outstanding.
Ed Grant
This was my first Hillerman book. It was good, but not great. Perhaps in his other books these characters are more fully developed, but they weren't developed in depth enough in this one to fully hook me. There were some interesting references in the book that suggest he knows history and the Indian tribes pretty well in the southwest. Makes me miss the Arizona/New Mexico area.
Kathy Stone
This was a great little story even if the mystery was easy to figure out. The gist is that bad guys have a lot of money from the drug trade and are looking for a way to bring in more drugs. Foiling their plans is a federal investigation involving stolen Indian Tribal Royalties and a diligent Border Patrol Officer. The title comes from the fact the a pipe cleaner in the oil and gas trade is called a pig. Enjoy this quick book.
Sinister pig (cochon sinistre)- the pig who guards the trough against other pigs getting food even though it has already had all it can eat - ergo, a very greedy pig. Also, a "pig" in industries employing piping is used to clean the pipelines, eventually removing the pig by means of a "pig trap" in the pipe line.

Both uses of "pig" are central to this novel, the first as a metaphor for a fictional captain of industry (a cartoonishly very bad man) and the second quite literally in the story line.
Another Hillerman thriller rather than mystery. Still enjoyable, but less comfortable. He seemed to personally know a shocking amount about this subject. Ending was the shittiest yet... Chee cheesily promising Bernie that he won't let anyone hit her in the head with a rifle. The end. What? The man knew how to write a book, but not remotely how to end one.
Bonnie Irwin
It was a job getting back into Tony Hillerman novels. this one features Jim Chee and Bernie Manuelito, with enough Washington DC corruption thrown in to create an interesting story which moves along at a good pace. I would have liked a little more back story on some of the characters, but all in all, this was a good read.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Red Mesa (Ella Clah, #6)
  • Spider Woman's Daughter
  • The Thunder Keeper (Wind River Reservation, #7)
  • Spirit Sickness
  • The Shaman's Bones (Charlie Moon, #3)
Tony Hillerman, who was born in Sacred Heart, Oklahoma, was a decorated combat veteran from World War II, serving as a mortarman in the 103rd Infantry Division and earning the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, and a Purple Heart. Later, he worked as a journalist from 1948 to 1962. Then he earned a Masters degree and taught journalism from 1966 to 1987 at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, wh ...more
More about Tony Hillerman...

Other Books in the Series

Navajo Mysteries (1 - 10 of 20 books)
  • The Blessing Way
  • Dance Hall of the Dead (Navajo Mysteries, #2)
  • Listening Woman (Navajo Mysteries, #3)
  • People of Darkness (Navajo Mysteries, #4)
  • The Dark Wind (Navajo Mysteries, #5)
  • The Ghostway (Navajo Mysteries, #6)
  • Skinwalkers (Navajo Mysteries, #7)
  • A Thief of Time (Navajo Mysteries, #8)
  • Talking God (Navajo Mysteries, #9)
  • Coyote Waits (Navajo Mysteries, #10)
The Blessing Way Skinwalkers (Navajo Mysteries, #7) A Thief of Time (Navajo Mysteries, #8) Listening Woman (Navajo Mysteries, #3) Dance Hall of the Dead (Navajo Mysteries, #2)

Share This Book