In this new book, The Silent Spirit, Coel wanders dangerously close (in my mind) to romance while writing a mystery novel. Maybe she's writing more for a female audience or maybe she sees this as a balance to the superhero antics of Sue Grafton's and Sara Paretsky's characters.
The story is built around a young native man and his attempts not only to make something of himself, but to do something important for his grandfather. That important something is directly connected to his great-grandfather's involvement in the 1923 movie The Covered Wagon.
The two books I read just before this one (In the Woods and Junkyard Dogs) dragged me in and pushed me to keep on reading to the end. However, I read The Silent Spirit in spurts and often went back to it reluctantly. It seemed to me that some episodes were well-told and flowed right along. Then, reading the next episode was like slogging through a mucky swamp -- slow and difficult.
It turned out that the ending was one of the good parts. The widely-flung bits of plot, and a few irrelevancies, came together in Coel's romantic (in a philosophical snese) ending. The last 75 pages made me glad I'd mucked through some of the earlier bits.
Have you read The Silent Spirit? Write, and tell this little bit of the world what you thought of it.
Other Margaret Coel books I've written about:
- Wife of Moon
- Blood Memory
- The Girl with Braided Hair
- The Eagle Catcher, Spirit Woman and The Thunder Keeper
- The Shadow Dancer
- The Drowning Man
- The Eye of the Wolf
- Margaret Coel's web site
- A hundred and some reviews at GoodReads
- Lesa's Book Critique of The Silent Spirit