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Skeleton Man (Navajo Mysteries, #17)
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Skeleton Man (Leaphorn & Chee #17)

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  5,505 Ratings  ·  280 Reviews
Hailed as "a wonderful storyteller" by the New York Times, and a "national and literary cultural sensation" by the Los Angeles Times, bestselling author Tony Hillerman is back with another blockbuster novel featuring the legendary Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn and Sergeant Jim Chee.

Former Navajo Tribal Police Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn comes out of retirement to help investigate wh
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published November 23rd 2004 by Harper (first published 2004)
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Mar 29, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Mystery Fans
She peered at her desk calendar, looked up again at the once-legendary lieutenant, and said, "And you are...?"

A knife-to-the-heart question when delivered in a building where one has worked most of one's adult life, given orders, hired people, and become modestly famous for a mile or two in every direction.

You know one thing that I really enjoy about Hillerman's books? He is a fan of happy endings. The book usually works out pretty amazing, with the good guys being rewarded and the bad guys bein
Dec 03, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Dead men, diamond hunters, determined Hillerman fans
Tony Hillerman used to be one of my favorite authors, but he did that thing a lot of authors do with long-running series: said he was done writing Leaphorn/Chee mysteries, but then kept writing them. After the stinker that was The Sinister Pig, I was almost afraid to read Skeleton Man, since it's the next to last book Hillerman wrote before he died, and I'd rather remember Hillerman in his glory days, when Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee were still fresh and sharp and coming at their Navajo ways from ...more
Susan Johnson
I love Tony Hillerman and his books set in the 4 corners of America- New Mexico, Arizona etc. I had read them all about 25 years ago and so I thought enough time had elapsed to listen to the audio on the way to my grandkids.

As it was going along I realized the character, Bernie, was really irritating me. First of all, I dislike women who do stupid things to prove to a man that she is just as good as he is. Please. Then as I was gritting my teeth, I realized it was the voice the narrator gave
Bill Donhiser
Another fine Hillerman Novel. An airplane crash, a cheated heiress, and a crooked lawyer. This creates a good plot for a good Navajo Mystery
Jul 29, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Hillerman fans or fans of the series
Recommended to Susan by: castoff from spouse's "done reading" shelf
Shelves: tradeable
Interesting idea but honestly so short that with some editing it could almost have been a short story. Just winding down the series with the old retired Navajo police Lt Joe Leaphorn now marginally involved in the goings-on, and mostly by phone.

This could have been so much more but perhaps readers of this series of books aren't interested in having a fine portrait painted of character and locale nor details of landscape. Perhaps they've read it all before. Standing on its own without the backgr
Peter Derk
Aug 12, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
The following elements are involved in this book: a severed limb, a diamond heist, a mid-air collision between two airplanes, and a mummified corpse.

Wouldn’t you think at least ONE of those would be exciting on some level?

If you’re human, you would. And Mr. Hillerman would owe you an apology. Probably even an apology involving baked goods. An apolo-cake. An aPielogy. At least that way you would walk away with SOMETHING.

There were two female characters in this book that I didn’t even realize were
Aug 02, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a selection of the month from my local book group. While I enjoyed it, I have read many of Tony Hillerman's books and would consider this one very average. Joe Leaphorn, a primary character in earlier books is now retired, but makes a cameo/walk-on appearance in this book, playing no significant part in advancing the plot.

The plot revolves around a true-life plane crash over the Grand Canyon. The crash, which resulted in two planes and all passengers falling from the sky, happened in 19
May 24, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Whether you like a book or not depends on why you read it. I've always loved Tony Hillerman's descriptions of the Southwest, and accordingly I have an unfulfilled desire to go there someday. His descriptions of the people and the characters are intriguing and the steady evolution of Jim Chee's relationships and Joe Leaphorn's retirement are satisfying.

Having said all that I got really stuck on some elements of the plot. I loved his descriptions of the Grand Canyon, but I've been there. The Gra
Apr 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-unabridged
CD/unabridged: Book 17 of the Joe Leaphorn & Jimmy Chee series. I've listened to two other books by Hillerman and he is a very good story teller. This one was written about four years before Hillerman's passing and is short. I was surprised to see that it was unabridged and only six discs.

In this one Leaphorn, retired, recounts the story of an airplane that crashed in to another and fell to the Grand Canyon while trying to prove the innocence of a simple man. I like it because I learned som
Nov 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
I love that this is told as a story from the past - Lt. Leaphorn tells the story of how a woman came from New York to try to find a bone from her father killed in a major airliner crash. This would give her sole inheritance to a large business empire but those that have control now try to stop her. Plus there are diamonds involved...lots of diamonds. Needless to say, Bernie and Jim Chee are almost peripheral to the story but they end up married and helping the woman claim her birthright. There's ...more
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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

Leaphorn & Chee (1 - 10 of 22 books)
  • The Blessing Way (Leaphorn & Chee, #1)
  • Dance Hall of the Dead (Leaphorn & Chee, #2)
  • Listening Woman (Leaphorn & Chee, #3)
  • People of Darkness (Leaphorn & Chee, #4)
  • The Dark Wind (Leaphorn & Chee, #5)
  • The Ghostway (Leaphorn & Chee, #6)
  • Skinwalkers (Leaphorn & Chee, #7)
  • A Thief of Time (Leaphorn & Chee, #8)
  • Talking God (Leaphorn & Chee, #9)
  • Coyote Waits (Leaphorn & Chee, #10)
“really think I could learn anything about that diamond” 1 likes
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