review of The Only Good Indians

First of all, the author's website is "". How metal is that?

When I read fiction that focuses on life experiences specific to a group of people I don't know much about, I always wonder whether the author is a knowledgeable source or is just speculating. In this case, the author himself is Blackfoot, like his main characters. Based on what he says in the acknowledgments, he didn't grow up on the Blackfeet Reservation, but discussed the book with people who did.

In the novel, the reservation seems to represent both safety and imprisonment. Outside it, you're harassed by racists; inside it, you face a poverty trap.

I'm fascinated by the ethical outlook underlying the plot. The feelings and desires of elk are taken very seriously, but it is understood that there are appropriate and inappropriate ways to take their lives. Guilt is incurred not for killing, but for an unfair hunt.

Anyway, great book. Jones really knows how to make you feel dread.