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The Silent Spirit (Wind River Reservation Series #14)
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The Silent Spirit (Wind River Reservation #14)

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3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  372 ratings  ·  54 reviews

Kiki Wallowingbull went to Hollywood to uncover the truth behind why his great-grandfather disappeared back in 1923. But after Kiki's frozen body is discovered on the reservation, Arapaho attorney Vicky Holden and Father John O'Malley must find the connection between the two violent deaths separated by nearly a century.

Hardcover, 336 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by Penguin Group (USA) (first published August 28th 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 619)
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Patricia McLean
Recently, I've read two Margaret Coel mysteries after not having read one for a couple of years. I don't think her writing is as strong as Tony Hillerman's and I think The Silent Spring is a case in point. She has two basic characters who are emotionally entangled, but pretty much doomed to never become lovers. This theme is getting ragged. I know that people pick up serial books at different points in the on-going story and some reiteration of the setup is necessary, but I found it annoying in ...more
Susie B
I haven't read any of these for awhile and thought I'd try them again. I really used to love Coel's books, but the relationship between Vicki and John is getting annoying. Just the same thing over and over. We know it is never going to amount to anything, so why keep mentioning it a million times in the book? And, as others have said, the writing is repetitive. The only reason I keep reading these is because of the Native American culture and history. Perhaps she could start a new series which f ...more
Liz
Jul 11, 2011 Liz rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of the series
Shelves: mystery, series-book
The premise is a 100 yr old murder from the days of the silent movies when Arapahoes and Shoshones played themselves in the first westerns. The author draws on some real history of that time and uses one of her writing techniques of flashback chapters. The mystery unravels slowly when the great grandson of the murdered man seeks justice and is murdered himself. In places the book felt repetitive, and the viewpoint changes from person to person a lot or I would have given it 4 stars.
Also the tens
...more
Janet Brigham
This is one of the very few series I can recommend to anyone without hesitation. This book is less intense than earlier books in the series, but pleasantly so. The Father John/Vicky relationship is more settled, although I do still wish that the Vicky character had some shred of a sense of humor. (The relationship between John and Walks On remains the most unflappable and dependable.) The time frame shifts comfortably between the 1920s and the present; the plot twist revelations at the end work ...more
Richard Etzel
One learns a lot about the history of the plains indians reading Coel's books. The Arapaho lawyer and a Jesuit priest on the Wind River Reservation team up once again to solve a 90 year mystery of an Indian disappearance while filming a silent movie. Vicky Holden doesn't get into a life and death situation in this one but Father John does. It all works out in the end. A good read that moves along to a predictable conclusion.
June
It was very interesting learning about Tim McCoy and native americans in film. I found the present day murder to not be as well developed or as engaging.

Mystery, Native Americans
Bill Reinehr
This a pretty easy read. Coel has written a bunch of these Wind River Reservation mysteries - about 17 or 18. Rather regional I suppose since the reservation never moves. I've not read any of the other entries in this series. Rather well done - the story shifts from the present back about 90 years to the Hollywood of the Silent Screen era and a supposed crime that took place back then. Those types of shifts can be jarring to the reader but her transitions seemed quite smooth to me. It probably h ...more
Ellen
This is the second Coel book I've read. I enjoyed reading this book until the very end. Coel deftly wove the past in with the present. I learned something new about Native Americans and silent films. Making the Indian scenes realistic was important, so using real Indians was the studio's best choice for the time. The mystery of what happened to Kiki and what happened to William kept me reading to see what would happen next. I especially enjoyed Coel's detailed descriptions of the winter landscap ...more
Sue
Arapaho attorney Vicky Holden and Father John O’Malley again work together in this excellent addition to the long-running series. Kiki Wallowingbull goes to California to determine why his great-grandfather never returned to the reservation to his young wife and son after going to Hollywood in the 1920s to help promote a silent film, The Covered Wagon. Shortly after Kiki returns home, Father John finds Kiki dead. Because of his past drug use, the authorities believe he died in a drug deal gone b ...more
Bruce Snell
I needed this book - I have been reading several other different series, and a chance to get back to Father John and Vicky Holden as they solve today's murder while resolving an 80 year old disappearance and possible murder was a pleasure. Father John has returned to the Wind River Reservation after 6 months in Rome; Vicky is still practicing law, although now it is primarily tribal issues, and she misses dealing with people in need. That is when Vicky gets a phone call from a young man asking f ...more
Paula
This story did not live up to what I generally expect from Margaret Coel. The backdrop of the story is the relationship of Father John O’Malley and Native American lawyer Vicky Holden. They have an up and down relationship- forbidden by his role as a priest and complicated by hers as a conflicted Native American Lawyer. She has started a law practice with Adam Lone Eagle, another native American lawyer who would like a permanent relationship. Vicky gets drawn in with Fr John to gather the clues ...more
Viccy
Another winner from Margaret Coel. If you like Tony Hillerman, these books are a great read-alike and there are 14 in the series, so it's nice and long-running. Kiki Wallowing Bull wants to remake his life to honor his family. After getting out of prison, he kicks the drugs and tells his grandfather he will find out what happened to Charlie's father, who went to Hollywood in 1922 and never came back to the reservation. Kiki goes to Hollywood and returns to the rez, only to be killed days later. ...more
Bob
Father John O’Malley is back from Rome and getting back in to life at St. Francis Mission on the Reservation. Vicky Holden is having thoughts about her relationship with Adam while they are working on major cases for the tribal Council, she can’t distance herself from the day to day problems of the Arapahos on the Res.
Father John and Vicky both get caught up in the murder of a reforming drug dealer Kiki Wallowingbull who has set out to LA to find out what happened to his Grandfather who disappea
...more
Arizonagirl
This story is based on the western movies that were made in the 1920's with Tim McCoy and the Arapahos. Kiki Wallowingbull is determined to find out who murdered his great-grandfather in 1923 while they were shooting The Covered Wagon in L.A. After returning from L.A., Kiki ends up dead himself. Father John, newly back from Greece, and Vicky have to solve the murder from the past before they can find out who killed Kiki.
Roberta
This is the fourth of the Wind River Mysteries I have enjoyed. Coel has been compared to Tony Hillerman with her novels about the Shoshone and the Arapaho of Wyoming. I have enjoyed the mix of history and mystery intertwined in each of the novels. This one focuses on the making of a Hollywood silent film about the West. 500 Indians, longhairs, traveled on horseback carrying tipis and old regalia to California to act in this film. The contrast of their stark reservation life with the glitz of Hol ...more
Betty410
Father John is back from his sabbatical to Rome but Vicki has a hard time adjusting to his return. After all, she thought he was gone forever. However, together they solve another mystery involving the death of one of the Indians on a silent film shoot in Hollywood. So we go back and forth from 1923 to today in an interesting recall of the problems of film making in those days as well as again seeing the prejudice and misunderstanding by the whites about Indians and their culture.
Once again we e
...more
Steven Howes
The plot line of this Wind River Mystery revolves around the making of one of the first epic western silent movies of the 1920's called "The Covered Wagon." Col. Tim McCoy, who later became a famous western movie actor in his own right, provided a large number of Shoshone and Arapaho Indians to serve as extras. The story is about a young Indian who tries to find out what happened to his great grandfather who worked on the movie but never returned home. As with all the other Wind River Mysteries, ...more
John Chadwick
Excellent and complex characters. The book starts out slow before gaining momentum. The who and why remains a mystery to the very end.
Lane
another good story
Lisa
I didn't think this one was as good as some of the others from the series but I am not sure why. I was frustrated with Vickie in this one and her reluctance to stand up to Adam and tell him how she really feels and how she would rather do the type of law she was doing before. The relationship with her and John seemed a little too redundant of books in the past as well. It also seemed a little unbelievable all the information they were able to find about the past situation by searching the web as ...more
David
This is another in the line of Native American mysteries that I and a couple of my friends in California enjoy reading. These stories capture the everyday struggles of the Araphoe and Shoshone peoples on the Wind River Reservation of Wyoming. Kiki Wallowingbull is trying to find out what happened to his great-grandfather who disappeared in the 1920's while acting as a "real Indian" in a silent movei. The story is about honoring the past elders and redemption of ones own past mistakes.
Vickie T
Coel does it again. Told from Vicky Holden's side, Father John O'Malley's side and in the present and in 1922. In 1922 a group of Indians were in a silent movie (true) with movie star Tim McCoy (real person). The Indians went to Hollywood to help promote the movie and one of them disappears. His grandson goes to Hollywood to find out what happened to his grandfather and returns to the reservation. He turns up dead and Vicky and Father John get involved in finding out the truth.
Barbara
Interesting story.
Not liking what the author is doing with Vicky. She is turning into a person with poor character - not doing what she agreed to do at the law office, treating Adam terribly and chasing after a priest. Hope there is a good reason for this.
Jeff Dickison
This is the best Wind River Mystery that I have read to date. Vicky & Father John must once again join forces to solve a murder. This one revolves around what happened to the victim's grandfather in Hollywood in 1923 while he was working on the classic silent western "The Covered Wagon". To all of you who are trying to compare Coel to Hillerman: Stop it. You're not being fair to Coel as nobody can top Hillerman.
Nancy
Kiki is newly-released from prison on a drug-related charge. He decides to turn his life around; his first task is to find out what happened to the great-grandfather who went with other Indians from the reservation to make a movie and didn't come home. It's mystery, history, genealogy, and as an added bonus contains the name of J. Warren Kerrigan, who was an actor from New Albany. Good read.
Patty
While I enjoy the history and Indian lore in this series, the will-they, won't-they semi-romance between the priest and the lawyer is very distracting. When they accept their friendship and stopped mooning over each other, the story can really shine. This one delves into the history of native Americans in the early days of Hollywood and will likely inspire more reading in that area as well.
Joan
Mar 17, 2011 Joan rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mystery fans, movie buffs
This was pretty good. I do like the relationship between Vicky Holden and Fr. John but it is tense because he is a Catholic priest and she a divorced Arapaho Indian lawyer. He has been away as this book begins and it takes a while for them to get together after his return to the mission. There is one thing missing from his story, though: I never see him in prayer.
Donna Lewis
This is the 3rd book that I have read about Vicky, Arapaho lawyer, and Father John from the St. Francis Mission. These two have to solve two crimes, one present murder and a mysterious murder that took place in Hollywood in the 1920s. Another interesting Native American saga, with plenty of historical information.
Ron
The moment he stepped inside, the noise erupted- clapping and shouting his name: Father John, Father John, Father John.
Back from Rome.... but how long can he stay at the Mission?
Well the story line in the #14 of the series seems to be weak. But Father John & Vicky somehow solve the mystery.
Ty
While I have loved the series up to this point, her new method of jumping back and forth between timeframes is frustrating. The last few books have incorporated and have been, frankly, annoying. I truly hope the next, and for now last book, doesn't incorporate this style.
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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...
The Eagle Catcher (Wind River Reservation, #1) The Ghost Walker (Wind River Reservation, #2) The Lost Bird (Wind River Reservation, #5) The Spirit Woman (Wind River Reservation, #6) Killing Raven (Wind River Reservation, #9)

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