Wyoming Arts Council

First novel by Wyoming sheriff debuts March 1

A reviewer’s proof of a new book landed on wyomingarts’ desk a few weeks ago. “Death Along the Spirit Road” is a mystery by deputy sheriff C.M. Wendelboe of Gillette. The book will be released March 1 by Berkley Prime Time Trade Paperback (978-0-425-24002-1, $14). Several mystery writers well-known to Wyomingites wrote blurbs for Wendelboe’s first novel:

From Craig Johnson of Ucross, author of “The Cold Dish and Junkyard Dogs:” “With Lakota FBI agent Manny Tanno, Wendeloboe has intrduced a powerful new character to Western crime fiction.”

Margaret Coel, Colorado author of a mystery series set on Wyoming’s Wind River Reservation: “A mystery novel that grabs you by the lapels and refues to let go… This is storytelling at its best and C.M. Wendelboe is the new author to watch!”

Some comments from Publishers Weekly:

Wendelboe’s debut, the absorbing first in a new Native American series, introduces FBI special agent Manny Tanno, a former Oglala Sioux tribal cop. When someone buries a war club in the head of Jason Red Cloud, an ambitious developer who put together a coalition of interests to build a resort overlooking the Wounded Knee site on South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Reservation, Tanno reluctantly leaves his FBI academy teaching job to investigate. Tanno must face the enmity of acting chief Leon “Lumpy” Looks Twice as well as the tribe’s distrust of FBI agents rooted in the American Indian Movement fiascos of the 1970s. To complicate matters further, Tanno’s brother, Reuben, is a prime suspect. The residual animosities that divided the tribe during AIM’s heyday, the awful heritage of the Wounded Knee Massacre, and the plight of the residents of the “poorest county in the nation” form a somber backdrop.

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