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No Footprints in the Bush
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No Footprints in the Bush (Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte #8)

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  105 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Paperback, 185 pages
Published November 1st 1986 by Collier Books (first published 1940)
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This mystery is foundational to the character of Bony, the half aborigine Detective-Inspector. Upfield's amazing detective is a product of will, a Jackie Robinson like determination to succeed in an environment where he is surrounded by jealousy and its chief symptom, prejudice. This novel in particular delves into the psyche of this unassuming yet deeply charismatic man who takes command by being the best man in the room (or in the outback).

No Footprints in the Bush was a fairly early volume i
No Footprints in the Bush is the 8th novel in the Bony series by Australian mystery writer, Arthur Upfield. The scene is set with Detective Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte witnessing the bombing from a small plane of a car. The car was carrying the police sergeant that Bony was to meet in regard to the recent murders of two aboriginal stockmen during the theft of cattle. Bony makes friends with the Wantella tribe's chief, Burning Water, and, against the wishes of the local land owner, Donald MacPhe ...more
Out in the bush, Bony witnesses an airplane dropping a bomb on a car. This is the beginning of the unraveling of a family secret, and a political plot. Upfield, an Australian mystery writer, always has an intriguing story.
"People who try to insult me because of my birth never hurt me. In fact, they provide human study that interests me. I am always interested by the unfortunate people who suffer from the inferiority complex which they so clearly reveal by insulting words and by being snobbish. Far from being hurt, I am always pleased because it is an acknowledgment of my superiority to them" (169).
The writing is not remarkable but the sense of place is so strong that it really doesn't matter. The degree to which Upfield ably conveys a feeling of the bush, coupled with the presence of his unusual protagonist, Bony, more than make up for what would otherwise be an ordinary police procedural. The narrator is again very good.
Sep 15, 2013 Beth added it
I actually liked this one the least of all of the Bony books I've read thus far. I really, really disliked the murderer, Rex. Something about the book just left me feeling, well, uneasy I guess. Still, can't wait to keep reading the series!
This was also published (Scribner paperback edition) under the title "No Footprints in the Bush" and that was what I first read 20 years ago. The audiobook read by Peter Hosking is marvelous.
Mary Newcomb
Bony is sent to assist with an investigation and finds the investigator has been killed. Once he figured out what was really going on, things got interesting. And then all was resolved.

Another great Australian read.
Classic bushman literature
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Aka Arthur Upfield

Arthur William Upfield (1 September 1890 – 13 February 1964) was an Australian writer, best known for his works of detective fiction featuring Detective Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte ('Bony') of the Queensland Police Force, a half-caste Aborigine.

Born in England, Upfield moved to Australia in 1910 and fought with the Australian military during the First World War. Following his wa
More about Arthur W. Upfield...

Other Books in the Series

Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte (1 - 10 of 29 books)
  • The Barrakee Mystery
  • The Sands of Windee (Bony, #2)
  • Wings Above the Diamantina
  • Murder Down Under
  • Winds of Evil (A Scribner Crime Classics)
  • The Bone is Pointed (Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte, #6)
  • The Mystery of Swordfish Reef
  • Death of a Swagman
  • The Devil's Steps
  • An Author Bites the Dust
The Bone is Pointed (Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte, #6) Murder Down Under The Bachelors of Broken Hill The Sands of Windee (Bony, #2) The Mystery of Swordfish Reef

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