10 books like Dirty Copper

By Jim Northrup,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Dirty Copper. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Evil Dead Center

By Carole Lafavor,

Book cover of Evil Dead Center: A Mystery

I met Carole LaFavor, Ojibwe, when I was writing for community newspapers and local magazines. I wrote a profile of LaFavor detailing her activism work in the Native community. Later, we were both in a writing group. I first heard some of the early writing she was doing for Evil Dead Center. She was the first Native woman I met writing crime and she inspired me to keep going on the book I was writing at the time.  University of Minnesota Press re-released Evil Dead Center in 2017 with the forward reading, “to underscore the significance of her writing to the Indigenous literary canon, to remind us of the power of her activism for HIV-positive Native peoples, and to return her important claims for the centrality of Two-Spirit peoples, bodies, and histories to the public eye.” - Lisa Tatonetti

Evil Dead Center

By Carole Lafavor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Evil Dead Center as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An Ojibwa woman has been found dead on the outskirts of the Minnesota Red Earth Reservation. The coroner ruled the death a suicide, but after an ex-lover comes back into her life saying foul play was involved, Renee LaRoche wants to prove otherwise. As the events begin to unfold, Renee conducts a presumably normal welfare check on a young Ojibwa boy in foster care. After she learns the boy has suffered abuse, Renee finds herself amid an investigation into the foster care system and the deep trauma it has inflicted on the Ojibwa people. As Renee uncovers horrible truths, she…


Every Last Secret

By Linda Rodriguez,

Book cover of Every Last Secret: A Mystery (Skeet Bannion Series)

Linda Rodriquez, Cherokee, is the second Native American woman I met who writes crime. Before we even met in person she was supportive of my ambition to write in this genre. She not only encouraged me to keep writing but to also join Sisters In Crime, the organization founded to support women mystery/crime writers. Every Last Secret is the #1 book in Rodriquez’s Skeet Bannion series. "Skeet" Bannion fled the stress of being the highest-ranking woman in the Kansas City Police Department, and moved to a small town to work on the local college police force. She thinks she has run away from stress until she needs to track down a killer while dealing with a vulnerable teen and the return of her ex-husband and her ailing father. So much for small town stress relief!

Every Last Secret

By Linda Rodriguez,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Every Last Secret as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Half-Cherokee Marquitta "Skeet" Bannion thought she was leaving her troubles behind when she fled the stress of being the highest ranking woman in the Kansas City Police Department. Moving to a small town to be chief of the campus police force, she builds a life outside of police work. She might even begin a new relationship with the amiable Brewster police chief. All of this is threatened when the student editor of the college newspaper is found murdered on campus. Skeet must track down the killer, following trails that lead to some of the most powerful people in the university.…


Firekeeper's Daughter

By Angeline Boulley,

Book cover of Firekeeper's Daughter

The main character in this book is bicultural, white American and Native, but I really related to the way the author shows what it’s like to belong to two cultures that don’t necessarily understand each other—and the way someone can become a bridge between cultures because of that. I also really appreciated the main character’s struggles with the expectations people have of her based on what she looks like, which doesn’t match the fullness of her cultural identity.

Firekeeper's Daughter

By Angeline Boulley,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Firekeeper's Daughter as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A PRINTZ MEDAL WINNER!
A MORRIS AWARD WINNER!
AN AMERICAN INDIAN YOUTH LITERATURE AWARD YA HONOR BOOK!

A REESE WITHERSPOON x HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB YA PICK

An Instant #1 New York Times Bestseller

Soon to be adapted at Netflix for TV with President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama's production company, Higher Ground.

“One of this year's most buzzed about young adult novels.” ―Good Morning America

A TIME Magazine Best YA Book of All Time Selection
Amazon's Best YA Book of 2021 So Far (June 2021)
A 2021 Kids' Indie Next List Selection
An Entertainment Weekly Most Anticipated Books of…


Winter Counts

By David Heska Wanbli Weiden,

Book cover of Winter Counts

Winter Counts is set on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota. Virgil Wounded Horse is the rez’s vigilante justice seeker when the feds, the tribal cops, and state cops can’t get their…together. Wounded Horse takes charge and sets things right. This is Heska Wanbli’s first novel and he too, is doing things right. Winter Counts was a New York Times Editors’ Choice, an Indie Next pick, a Best Book of 2020 by Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Amazon, NPR, and ten other publications. The book was an Amazon Best Mystery and Thriller of the year, Best Noir Fiction, and Best Debut of the Year as well as a Notable Selection for Best Crime Novel by CrimeReads. A must-read and then eagerly await Heska Wanbli’s second book. 

Winter Counts

By David Heska Wanbli Weiden,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Winter Counts as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

ANTHONY AWARD WINNER FOR BEST FIRST NOVEL

THRILLER AWARD WINNER FOR BEST FIRST NOVEL

EDGAR AWARD NOMINEE FOR BEST FIRST NOVEL

“Winter Counts is a marvel. It’s a thriller with a beating heart and jagged teeth.”  —Tommy Orange, author of There There

A Best Book of 2020: NPR * Publishers Weekly * Library Journal * CrimeReads * Goodreads * Sun Sentinel * SheReads * MysteryPeople 

 A groundbreaking thriller about a vigilante on a Native American reservation who embarks on a dangerous mission to track down the source of a heroin influx. 

Virgil Wounded Horse is the local enforcer on the…


Murder on the Red River

By Marcie R. Rendon,

Book cover of Murder on the Red River

We Americans are obsessed with mysteries from TV to Film to Books. And I am obsessed with the young sleuth, Cash Blackbear, the unlikely shero of Marcie R. Rendon. To date, there are three Blackbear mysteries: Murder on the Red River, Girl Gone Missing, and Sinister Graves. Blackbear did not have an enchanted childhood, but she not only survives—she thrives and solves cases with the astuteness, curiosity, and moxie of the most seasoned detective. Set in Northern Minnesota in the 1970s, the series heroine is 19, totally independent, hard-working, and somewhat of a pool hustler. Her one friend, Sherriff Wheaton, recognizes her brilliance and intuition and accepts and supports her. Blackbear helps him solve crimes, even if he protests. If you're a mystery fan, follow some Indigenous sleuths and Rendon's series is a great place to start.   

Murder on the Red River

By Marcie R. Rendon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Murder on the Red River as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One Book, One Minnesota Selection for Summer 2021
 
Introducing Cash Blackbear, a young Ojibwe woman whose visions and grit help solve a brutal murder in this award-winning debut.

1970s, Red River Valley between North Dakota and Minnesota: Renee “Cash” Blackbear is 19 years old and tough as nails. She lives in Fargo, North Dakota, where she drives truck for local farmers, drinks beer, plays pool, and helps solve criminal investigations through the power of her visions. She has one friend, Sheriff Wheaton, her guardian, who helped her out of the broken foster care system.

One Saturday morning, Sheriff Wheaton is…


Rez Life

By David Treuer,

Book cover of Rez Life: An Indian's Journey Through Reservation Life

In Rez Life, David Treuer, an Ojibwe from the Leech Lake Reservation, shows us the real-life consequences of historical events and policy. Through scholarship and anecdote, Treuer teaches readers what it really means to be Native American in a country that has tried, time and again, to erase them. Rez Life is not the history book rendition of past wrongs and tragic events. Instead, it is an articulate, expressive look at the people who live with the legacy of those past wrongs and tragic events. It shows readers the Native Americans they won’t see in history books—the ones that exist today, fighting to overcome the trauma thrust upon them.

Rez Life

By David Treuer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rez Life as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A prize-winning writer offers “an affecting portrait of his childhood home, Leech Lake Indian Reservation, and his people, the Ojibwe” (The New York Times).
 
A member of the Ojibwe of northern Minnesota, David Treuer grew up on Leech Lake Reservation, but was educated in mainstream America. Exploring crime and poverty, casinos and wealth, and the preservation of native language and culture, Rez Life is a strikingly original blend of history, memoir, and journalism, a must read for anyone interested in the Native American story. With authoritative research and reportage, he illuminates issues of sovereignty, treaty rights, and natural-resource conservation. He…


The Assassination of Hole in the Day

By Anton Treuer,

Book cover of The Assassination of Hole in the Day

Bagonegiizhig, better known as Hole in the Day, is an extremely charismatic figure in the history of Minnesota, yet few know of his life and leadership. In The Assassination of Hole in the Day, Ojibwe historian and scholar Anton Treuer skillfully reveals the rise and downfall of this clever, polarizing figure. An expert at his craft, Treuer provides readers with an excellent historical context to understand the world in which Hole in the Day lived. Then, Treuer shows readers how Hole in the Day rose to prominence and why he should not be overlooked by the annals of history.  

The Assassination of Hole in the Day

By Anton Treuer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Assassination of Hole in the Day as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

On June 27, 1868, Hole in the Day (Bagonegiizhig) the Younger left Crow Wing, Minnesota, for Washington, DC, to fight the planned removal of the Mississippi Ojibwe to a reservation at White Earth. Several miles from his home, the self-styled leader of all the Ojibwe was stopped by at least twelve Ojibwe men and fatally shot.

Hole in the Day's death was national news, and rumors of its cause were many: personal jealousy, retribution for his claiming to be head chief of the Ojibwe, retaliation for the attacks he fomented in 1862, or retribution for his attempts to keep mixed-blood…


The Land of Dreams

By Vidar Sundstøl, Tiina Nunnally (translator),

Book cover of The Land of Dreams

Superficially, The Minnesota Trilogy is a murder mystery. When two Norwegian tourists are slaughtered in a national forest, it seems like an open and shut case. All the evidence points in one direction, but park ranger Lance Hansen is not convinced. He suspects his own brother. Hansen’s amateur investigation accidentally uncovers a second mystery involving his ancestor and the death (murder?) of a nineteenth-century Ojibwe medicine man. Sundstøl’s depiction of contemporary rural Minnesota is as full of magic, menace, and intrigue as the best fantasy world-building. The American Midwest becomes a land of prophetic dreams and roaming ghosts. The clash of cultures is less political than mythic, and the stakes are spiritual. History is still happening. Family is deeper than blood. These books open my imagination and tear my heart in half.

The Land of Dreams

By Vidar Sundstøl, Tiina Nunnally (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Land of Dreams as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Riverton Prize for best Norwegian crime novel and named by Dagbladet as one of the top twenty-five Norwegian crime novels of all time, The Land of Dreams is the chilling first installment in Vidar Sundstol's critically acclaimed Minnesota Trilogy, set on the rugged north shore of Lake Superior and in the region's small towns and deep forests.

The grandson of Norwegian immigrants, Lance Hansen is a U.S. Forest Service officer and has a nearly all-consuming passion for local genealogy and history. But his quiet routines are shattered one morning when he comes upon a Norwegian tourist brutally…


Iron Lake

By William Kent Krueger,

Book cover of Iron Lake

This is the first book I’ve read by William Kent Krueger, but it made me want to read the whole series. Set during a miserably cold winter in the northeast corner of Minnesota, a stone’s throw from Lake Superior, this mystery about a brutal murder and a missing native American boy will make you fear frostbite just from turning pages. 

Cork O’Connor is a complicated character in a seemingly downward spiral. Once the sheriff of this small town, he’s since lost his wife, his job, and is worried about losing his children. His mixed heritage of Irish and Ojibwe makes him see things a little differently than the new sheriff, but not having a badge won’t stop him from taking action when people he cares about are in danger.

Iron Lake

By William Kent Krueger,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Iron Lake as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The 20th anniversary edition of the first novel in William Kent Krueger's beloved and bestselling Cork O'Connor mystery series-includes an exclusive bonus short story!

"A brilliant achievement, and one every crime reader and writer needs to celebrate." -Louise Penny, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Glass Houses

"A master craftsman [and] a series of books written with a grace and precision so stunning that you'd swear the stories were your own." -Craig Johnson, author of the Walt Longmire series

"Among thoughtful readers, William Kent Krueger holds a very special place in the pantheon." -C.J. Box, #1 New York Times…


Rules of Prey

By John Sandford,

Book cover of Rules of Prey

This is the first book in another long-running series, this one featuring Lucas Davenport, whom we first meet as a homicide detective on the Minneapolis Police Department. Like the characters above, Davenport is his own man and lives and works by his own code. In this case, he is tracking a serial killer who leaves notes for the police detailing the rules by which he selects and kills his victims. A great book in a fantastic series that features a lot of action, a great supporting cast, and a lot of black humor as well.

Rules of Prey

By John Sandford,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Rules of Prey as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

**Don't miss John Sandford's brand-new thriller Ocean Prey - out now**

#1 New York Times bestselling author John Sandford's 'haunting, unforgettable, ice-blooded thriller' - first in the Lucas Davenport series!

The killer was mad but brilliant.

He left notes with every woman he killed. Rules of murder: Never have a motive. Never follow a discernible pattern. Never carry a weapon after it has been used...So many rules to his sick, violent games of death.

But Lucas Davenport, the cop who's out to get him, isn't playing by the rules.

***Praise for RULES OF PREY***

'Terrifying... Sandford has crafted the kind…


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