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Winter Counts: A Novel
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Published:
HarperAudio 2020
Status:
Available from OverDrive
Description

An addictive and groundbreaking debut thriller set on a Native American reservation and hailed by CJ Box as ""a hell of a debut""
""Winter Counts is both a propulsive crime novel and a wonderfully informative book."" —Louise Erdrich

Virgil Wounded Horse is the local enforcer on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. When justice is denied by the American legal system or the tribal council, Virgil is hired to deliver his own punishment, the kind that's hard to forget. But when heroin makes its way into the reservation and finds Virgil's own nephew, his vigilantism suddenly becomes personal. He enlists the help of his ex-girlfriend and sets out to learn where the drugs are coming from, and how to make them stop.

They follow a lead to Denver and find that drug cartels are rapidly expanding and forming new and terrifying alliances. And back on the reservation, a new tribal council initiative raises uncomfortable questions about money and power. As Virgil starts to link the pieces together, he must face his own demons and reclaim his Native identity. He realizes that being a Native American in the twenty-first century comes at an incredible cost.

Winter Counts is a tour-de-force of crime fiction, a bracingly honest look at a long-ignored part of American life, and a twisting, turning story that's as deeply rendered as it is thrilling.

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Format:
OverDrive MP3 Audiobook, OverDrive Listen
Edition:
Unabridged
Street Date:
08/25/2020
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780063006126
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

David Heska Wanbli Weiden. (2020). Winter Counts: A Novel. Unabridged HarperAudio.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

David Heska Wanbli Weiden. 2020. Winter Counts: A Novel. HarperAudio.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

David Heska Wanbli Weiden, Winter Counts: A Novel. HarperAudio, 2020.

MLA Citation (style guide)

David Heska Wanbli Weiden. Winter Counts: A Novel. Unabridged HarperAudio, 2020.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
Aug 21, 2020 18:36:49
Date Updated:
Oct 31, 2022 21:37:16
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May 19, 2024 14:44:36
Last Metadata Change:
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OverDrive Product Record

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        David Heska Wanbli Weiden, an enrolled citizen of the Sicangu Lakota Nation, is the author of Winter Counts, which won the Anthony Award for Best First Novel and the Thriller Award for Best First Novel, and was nominated for an Edgar Award for Best First Novel. He received the PEN America Writing for Justice Fellowship and is the recipient of fellowships and residencies from MacDowell, Sewanee, and Tin House. He lives in Denver with his family.

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title
Winter Counts
fullDescription

An addictive and groundbreaking debut thriller set on a Native American reservation and hailed by CJ Box as ""a hell of a debut""
""Winter Counts is both a propulsive crime novel and a wonderfully informative book."" —Louise Erdrich

Virgil Wounded Horse is the local enforcer on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. When justice is denied by the American legal system or the tribal council, Virgil is hired to deliver his own punishment, the kind that's hard to forget. But when heroin makes its way into the reservation and finds Virgil's own nephew, his vigilantism suddenly becomes personal. He enlists the help of his ex-girlfriend and sets out to learn where the drugs are coming from, and how to make them stop.

They follow a lead to Denver and find that drug cartels are rapidly expanding and forming new and terrifying alliances. And back on the reservation, a new tribal council initiative raises uncomfortable questions about money and power. As Virgil starts to link the pieces together, he must face his own demons and reclaim his Native identity. He realizes that being a Native American in the twenty-first century comes at an incredible cost.

Winter Counts is a tour-de-force of crime fiction, a bracingly honest look at a long-ignored part of American life, and a twisting, turning story that's as deeply rendered as it is thrilling.

reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        Starred review from June 29, 2020
        Virgil Wounded Horse, the half Lakota, half white narrator of Weiden’s gorgeous debut, serves as a fists-for-hire enforcer on South Dakota’s Rosebud Indian Reservation. Ever since Virgil’s sister died in a car accident three years earlier, her son, Nathan, has been living with him. Back when Virgil was an alcoholic, his erratic behavior drove away the love of his life, Marie Short Bear, but now he’s sober, and after Nathan ends up in the hospital from an overdose of heroin, Marie returns to help Virgil take on the bad guys responsible for bringing heroin to the reservation. To complicate matters, Marie faces a decision about medical school in New Mexico, right as she and Virgil are falling back in love. The novel twists delicately around various personal conflicts while artfully addressing issues related to the politics of the reservation. Weiden combines funny, complex, and unforgettable characters with strong, poetic prose (“This was the winter of my sorrow, one I had tried to elude but which had come for me with a terrible cruelty”). This is crime fiction at its best. Agent: Michelle Brower, Aevitas Creative Management.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        June 1, 2020

        DEBUT A Native American vigilante-for-hire takes his most personal assignment in this debut. When the American justice system fails, a distressingly common occurrence on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota, Virgil Wounded Horse is the guy you call to mete out punishment on his own terms--even if you're a tribal councilman looking to get heroin off your reservation. No sooner does Virgil begin to track down who's smuggling the drugs and eliminate the problem (with the help of ex-girlfriend Marie, the councilman's daughter), when he suddenly faces a more immediate problem: his nephew Nathan has been caught with enough prescription pills in his school locker that he could receive 30 years in prison. As he works to hunt down the drug dealers and prove Nathan's innocence, Virgil must reconcile his actions with his rogue nature and natural suspicion of working with a police force that hasn't had his tribe's interests at heart; while Marie pushes him to embrace the spiritual side of his Lakota heritage. VERDICT Weiden's series launch sheds much-needed light on the legal and societal barriers facing Native Americans while also delivering a suspenseful thriller that builds to a bloody climax. A worthy addition to the burgeoning canon of indigenous literature. [See Prepub Alert, 1/29/20.]--Michael Pucci, South Orange P.L., NJ

        Copyright 2020 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        September 1, 2020
        When his troubled 14-year-old nephew, Nathan, is endangered by a new heroin operation on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota, hired muscle Virgil Wounded Horse must rely on more than his fists to save him. Narrator Virgil, a member of the Lakota Nations, is a vigilante-style bruiser whom victims and their families turn to when, thanks to an indifferent federal justice system and a toothless tribal court, sexual assaults and other violent crimes aren't prosecuted. Falsely busted after pills are planted in his school locker, forced to make drug buys while wearing a wire and then mishandled by agents, Nathan is the latest victim of systemic malfeasance. Virgil, his nephew's guardian since the rap-loving boy's mother (Virgil's sister) was killed in a car accident, finds himself in way over his head with the bad guys. His unlikely ally is his combative ex-girlfriend, Marie Short Bear, an ardent believer in the Native rituals for which he has no use: "I didn't do ceremonies." She's also the daughter of a shady councilman running for tribal president. Like its protagonist, the novel is rough around the edges. Key characters have a way of fading from view, and things get talky just when the action is picking up. And at one point, Weiden makes rather odd use of cartoonlike action words including "BANG!" and "Missed!" Weiden is at his best allowing Native culture to curl naturally around the mystery plot. A ceremonial scene in which Virgil has a harrowing vision of being present at the massacre at Wounded Knee is a bit heavy-handed but affecting nonetheless. A solid if inconsistent crime novel.

        COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        May 1, 2020
        Virgil Wounded Horse wants to do right by his Lakota reservation, but is vigilante violence really the way? He's been earning a meager living as an enforcer, taking charge when the legally shackled tribal police can't act and the feds won't. He's also raising his 14-year-old nephew, Nathan. Virgil was bullied for his mixed- blood heritage, and so is Nathan. Enter wealthy tribal councilman Ben Short Bear, who was none too fond of Virgil while he was seeing his daughter, Marie, but who now wants Virgil to take care of a guy Ben says is dealing heroin. Virgil is skeptical, but then Nathan nearly dies from an overdose, and Marie reenters his life. Weiden's cantering, engrossing, and culturally revelatory debut crime novel is propelled by vital and affecting Native American characters facing the endless repercussions of the genocidal past, ongoing racism and injustice, and cruel betrayals within their besieged community. Suspenseful, gritty, gruffly endearing, and resonant, Weiden's thriller, with its illumination of Lakota spiritual traditions and hopes raised for Virgil's evolution from thug to sleuth, launches a promising and meaningful series.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2020, American Library Association.)

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shortDescription

An addictive and groundbreaking debut thriller set on a Native American reservation and hailed by CJ Box as ""a hell of a debut""
""Winter Counts is both a propulsive crime novel and a wonderfully informative book."" —Louise Erdrich

Virgil Wounded Horse is the local enforcer on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. When justice is denied by the American legal system or the tribal council, Virgil is hired to deliver his own punishment, the kind that's hard to forget. But when heroin makes its way into the reservation and finds Virgil's own nephew, his vigilantism suddenly becomes personal. He enlists the help of his ex-girlfriend and sets out to learn where the drugs are coming from, and how to make them stop.

They follow a lead to Denver and find that drug cartels are rapidly expanding and forming new and terrifying alliances. And back on the reservation, a new tribal council initiative raises...

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