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The Story Teller (Wind River Reservation, #4)
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The Story Teller (Wind River Reservation #4)

3.99  ·  Rating Details ·  859 Ratings  ·  68 Reviews
Father O'Malley and Arapaho attorney Vicky Holden return! When a sacred tribal artifact disappears from a museum, it's more than Arapaho history that is lost--it's an Arapaho student's life...

From back cover
When the Arapaho storyteller discovers that a sacred tribal artifact is missing from a local museum, attorney Vicky Holden is called to investigate. The lost treasure:
Mass Market Paperback, 241 pages
Published September 1st 1999 by Berkley
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4.5 stars, rounding up

First off, and very important, DO NOT read the blurbs, descriptions, or covers, or too many reviews about this series of books. There are too many spoilers floating about, and you don't want to miss the enjoyment of reading the book without all the hype. It's that good; you don't want to spoil your sense of mystery!

In this book, Arapaho lawyer, Vicky Holden, seems to take first place in investigation and taking chances while trying to discover whether there is truth to an o
Feb 01, 2011 Sandra rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
Margaret Coel has become my substitute for Tony Hillerman. Vicky Holden and Father John O'Malley are the characters rather than Chee and Leaphorn, while the Wind River Reservation of Wyoming replaces the Four Corners region of Arizona and New Mexico. I enjoy the mysteries but always find myself going to my travel guide or Google Earth and looking at the places that are central to the story. Usually have to google to find out more info on the plot as well. This particular story concerns museums, ...more
Aug 06, 2015 Barb rated it it was amazing
Another incredibly complex tale from Margaret Coel. THE STORY TELLER is an elder of the Arapaho tribe, his position passed down from his father and grandfather. When the government decides to force museums to relinquish sacred and ritual objects from their collections back to the tribes, the old man remembers a special book, created by one of the survivors of a horrendous massacre in Colorado. The museum denies ever owning I,; denies its very existence, but the evidence says otherwise. Meanwhile ...more
Feb 16, 2013 Roberta rated it really liked it
Wow! This Coel mystery is chock full of interesting history and action! The history involves an event that occured in 1864--the Sand Creek Massacre (also known as the Battle of Sand Creek) where both Cheyenne and Arapahoe were killed by a 700-man Colorado militia. The dead and injured were almost all women and children. The involvement of both attorney Vicky Holden and Father John O'Malley in finding the true story of the historic event and what is behind a number of murders leads to high drama. ...more
Gilbert Baron
Dec 15, 2016 Gilbert Baron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A story with beautiful history

Vicky and Father John investigate the murder of a student that finds something that he knows validates his research. Many people are not happy with what it proves and are willing to do anything to stop it. One of the more difficult Margaret Coel stories of the Arapaho Nation to stop reading once you start.
Gail Richmond
Nov 18, 2016 Gail Richmond rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Solid writing and believable happenings. Love the setting and development of the main characters.
Janet McGee
Dec 28, 2016 Janet McGee rated it it was amazing
Margaret Coel produced another great mystery. She paints such a compelling portrait of Arapaho culture, while weaving a character-driven who-done-it. Vicky Holden is an Arapaho woman, a divorcée who left the Wind River Reservation to get earn a law degree, but her own people hire her only for wills, divorces and adoptions. Then, she receives a phone call from the Director of Culture, demanding an inconvenient meeting. Sensing that this may be her chance to serve her people and win their respect, ...more
Jun 25, 2016 Andrew rated it really liked it
In “The Story Teller”, author Margaret Coel continues her tales of the Arapahos of the Wind River Reservation (atlhough, in this novel, most of the action occurs in Denver) with emphasis on attorney Vicky Holden and the local Jesuit, Father John O'Malley.

I found the multi-level mystery that made up the plot to be quite engaging. Fr. O'Malley would like to start a small museum on the reservation as a home for artifacts being returned from museums as per US Law. He'd like a local guy, about to gra
Nov 09, 2013 Cat. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Vicki Holden, the Arapaho lawyer, is asked by a tribal elder to investigate a ledger book he remembers seeing in a Denver museum when he was a child. That museum is now repatriating Native artifacts to several tribes. The ledger book--a vivid historical document written in pictographs by the tribal storyteller in the mid 19th-century--is not on the list of repatriated items the museum claims is all the have for the Wind River Reservation.

When Vicki arrives in Denver she crosses paths with Father
Chris Demer
Jan 07, 2016 Chris Demer rated it really liked it
The Arapahos have asked Vicky Holden to bring back some of their artifacts from a museum in Denver in fulfillment of the Native American Graves Protection and Restoration Act. In particular, they are keen to have a ledger book returned, which depicts the presence of Arapahos at the Sand Creek Massacre. When Vicky gets to the museum, she is told such a book does not exit, or in any case, has never been owned by the museum. This information does not conform to what she was told by an elderly Arapa ...more
Nov 08, 2016 Wanda rated it liked it
Vicky is asked to help the tribe reclaim some items from a museum in Denver. The list provider seems to be missing an item. She goes to Denver and starts the search for the item, a ledger book. In the meantime, Father John, also goes to Denver to talk to his boss in the hopes of getting funds to build a museum for the mission and tribe to showcase the expected items and other things. The young man he had hoped would be the director is found murdered and he helps Vicky figure out what happened. T ...more
Jun 25, 2011 Bea rated it it was amazing
Vicky Holden is an Arapaho woman who has returned to the reservation as an attorney wanting somehow to help her people. She is asked to get back a sacred treasure that only the tribal storyteller believes ever existed in a Denver museum. Father John is a priest who was sent to the reservation to dry out and to conquer his drinking problem. It was supposed to be a punishment which turned out to be life-giving to him.

And, then a young Arapaho is killed. He was writing his thesis and planning, aft
Aug 31, 2010 Karen rated it it was amazing
A mystery about the high stakes of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, which allows Native tribes to recover their treasures from museums and gain compensation for losses.
Arapaho lawyer Vicky Holden and her confidante, Jesuit priest John O’Malley investigate the disappearance of a native graduate student whose thesis argued for Arapaho victims in a massacre that occurred in 19th century Colorado -- an assertion that challenged the accepted version of history as documente
Jan C
I am enjoying this series. Here Vickie Holden's assistance is finally requested by the tribal elders. Does this mean that she is accepted back into the tribe? Apparently the tribes are about to get some of their artifacts back. But one of the elders remembers having seen a specific exhibit back in 1920 and it didn't make the list. They want her to find out about this. It is proof that there were Arapahoe at Sand Creek and the government is handing out land based on land seized in the past. Meanw ...more
Oct 29, 2011 Patty rated it really liked it
Father John and Vicky find themselves once again working on a murder. This time a young graduate student who has promised to be curator at the Arapaho Museum is killed while finishing up his master's thesis. Is there something in the thesis that got him killed? Or was it a drug related killing? Vicky and Father John both dismiss the drug angle, they know Todd and that isn't his style.

At first I thought this was going to be another "big issue" book, i.e., something that involves several federal a
Sep 14, 2009 Nancy rated it really liked it
Margaret Coel combines a fast-paced mystery with good character development. In book four of the Wind River Series, a respected elder informs Arapaho attorney Vicky Holden that an important item, a priceless ledger book with pictographs documenting the tribe's history, is missing from a inventory of artifacts held at the a Denver museum and scheduled to be returned to the tribe. The museum curator denies any such book existed, but Vicky trusts her instincts, her logic and the tribal elder. She l ...more
May 26, 2009 Rosamond rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2009-read
Another great book by Native American Author Margaret Coel. Suspenseful, historical and good tension between the main characters. I give this a star-5. Tony Hillerman fans would like this!
The Story Teller The Story Teller

The lost treasure: a one-of-a kind ledger book and the only Arapaho account of the Sand Creek Massacre. The book is worth millions, so when the museum says they never had it, Vicky's suspicion is aroused. Then she learns that an Arapaho student mysteriously died while researchi
Dec 07, 2015 Bob rated it liked it
found this early Margaret Coel among a bunch of donated books and it wasn't one I had read and I am glad I spotted it. Vicky Holden, Arapaho Lawyer gets a job from the tribal council to find out why a certain ledger book is not on the list of items to be returned from a Denver library. The library curator claims to have never seen it and that the library does not have it. This lead Vicky on a search to prove that the ledger was held by the library and this ties in with the murder of an Arapaho g ...more
Apr 02, 2012 K rated it liked it
The fourth in this series (that I've read out of order) and a solid, albeit predictable, installation. I have enjoyed these stories for their straightforward style and their treatment o the Arapaho people. Father John and Vickie Holden will never consummate their undeniable attraction to one another and we know that. But that doesn't stop us from secretly rooting for a miracle! And in the meantime, we can satisfy ourselves with Coel's consistent writing. These are fairly linear, more or less tra ...more
K. East
Nov 25, 2015 K. East rated it really liked it
I really like this series and the characters, although the unresolved sexual tension between the attorney and the priest is getting pretty intense. The only quibble I have is that the plots have been largely all the same -- greedy white man/corporation tries to cheat the native Americans. This plot has a slightly different bent to it, and I'm hoping the next one will take a different tact as well. One of the things I liked so much about Tony Hillerman's Navajo series was that the plots and even ...more
Jul 19, 2015 Ed rated it really liked it
#4 in the Wind River Reservation series featuring Fr John O'Malley, pastor of St Francis mission on the Arapaho Wind River Reservation, and Vicky Holden, Indian lawyer.

Wind River series - Fr John O'Malley is in Denver to get approval and funding for an Arapaho museum. While there his prospective curator, a graduate student, is murdered. Vicky Holden is also in Denver investigating why a valuable ledger book is not on the assets of a Denver museum scheduled to be repatriated to the tribe. The mus
Sep 21, 2014 Lisa rated it really liked it
Book #4 was available so I started the series with this one. Didn't matter, I'm learning about the main characters since I went back and read #1 and #2.
In this story, I learned about ledger books then I saw some pages of ledger books on display at the DeYoung Museum as part of their current exhibit of Native American art from the Weisel Family Collection. Story takes place mainly in Denver and **spoiler alert** the bad guy ends up being some crazy, greedy white guy.
Mary Helene
Oct 30, 2014 Mary Helene rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
Jesuits, Native American. I like it. I didn't quite engage, though, until I realized it was a analogy of a spiritual journey.

Part of the problem was I just didn't really believe in the story. John Irving has one of his characters, a writer, ask "Did you believe my story?" and when someone says no, he asks "Where did you stop believing? At what point in the story?" I watch now for my own belief, where it begins and ends, and this one, oddly enough, began late.
Margaret Coel writes mysteries with a strong focus on Native American culture. They are light on violence and fans of CJ Box may enjoy the strong setting that Coel evokes. The Story Teller is the fourth in the series, but the first one that is available in large print at the library. If you would rather start at the beginning, look for The Eagle Catcher.
Aug 16, 2011 Adrienne rated it really liked it
This is number 4, and I'm reading them out of order and would suggest reading them in order because of some of the story lines that continue through a couple of the books. I'm finding the characters more interesting and the mysteries more varied. Enjoyable reading. Planning to go through the whole series.
Fredrick Danysh
Oct 04, 2011 Fredrick Danysh rated it really liked it
As artifacts are being returned to the Arapaho tribe, as picture ledger is missing. The museum denies and its Cheyenne expert deny iy ever existed and that any Arapaho had died at the Sand Creek Massacre. The gruadte student reseaching the battle is murdered. Attorney Vicky Holden and Father John O'Malley investigate and things start to get interesting.
Feb 09, 2014 Gloria rated it really liked it
this book packed a lot of murder and action for a short novel. Still very interesting and suspenseful. Guess I'll go this week to see which others in the series are in the library. I bought book 1 to get the basis for the characters since it wasn't in our collection. I don't want to buy all 17.
Jeff Dickison
Oct 28, 2013 Jeff Dickison rated it really liked it
The best of the Wind River Reservation tales that I have read to date. An Arapaho picture-ledger book is missing from a museum and as Vicky and father John investigate people begin to die. This series would be better if Vicky and father John didn't have this 'thing' for each other. That part of the story I have never been able to believe in. Recommended.
Feb 05, 2017 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
" Another splendid mix of mystery and Native American culture."
John Winkworth
Dec 09, 2013 John Winkworth rated it it was amazing
Shelves: coel-margaret
In October of 2012 we viewed an exhibition of Dwayne Wilcox entitled Above the Fruited Plain in the Missoula Art Museum. Mr Wilcox used ledger paper for his work. I was enchanted by his contemporary views, his sense of humor, and his use of ledger paper serving as a great historical grounding. Ledger paper has a key role to play in this book and added to my interest.
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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 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)
  • Eye of the Wolf (Wind River Reservation, #11)

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