Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Tony Hillerman

Tony Hillerman died a couple of days ago at the age of 83. This is the obituary printed in the New York Times.

Select Editions first used a Hillerman book in 1990, Coyote Waits. We went on to publish his work in editions in Australia and the Netherlands and Poland and Russia and Finland—just about everywhere we have an edition. Every couple of years we would just feel that something was missing from our series, and then the new Hillerman would appear, and that would be exactly what we’d been looking for! There is something about Hillerman’s Navajo characters, Leaphorn and Chee, and the tribal culture he described that appealed both because of his honesty and uniqueness in dealing with these Indian themes, and because of their ultimate transcendent humanity. No wonder he was a Grandmaster of the Mystery Writers of America as well as a Special Friend of the Dineh (the Navajo people), a distinction about which he was most proud.

The man will be missed. But his books will go on for a long, long time. It was an honor to have been able to bring some of them to our readers.

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