Review copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Redemption by Deborah J Ledford
Narrator: Jennice Ontiveros
Series: Eva "Lightning Dance" Duran #1
Published by Brilliance Audio on September 1, 2023
Length: 10 hours, 27 minutes
From award-winning author Deborah J Ledford comes a thrilling new series featuring a Native American sheriff’s deputy who risks it all to find a friend who’s gone missing. After four women disappear from the Taos Pueblo reservation, Deputy Eva “Lightning Dance” Duran dives into the case. For her, it’s personal. Among the missing is her best friend, Paloma, a heroin addict who left behind an eighteen-year-old son.
Eva senses a lack of interest from the department as she embarks on the investigation. But their reluctance only fuels her fire. Eva teams up with tribal police officer and longtime friend Cruz “Wolf Song” Romero to tackle a mystery that could both ruin her reputation and threaten her standing in the tribe. And when the missing women start turning up dead, Eva uncovers clues that take her deeper into the reservation’s protected secrets. As Eva races to find Paloma before it’s too late, she will face several tests of loyalty—to her friend, her culture, and her tribe.
I’m a fan of police procedurals and those which are in other cultures and settings. Redemption has the complexity of Native American tribal police and culture. The setting is in New Mexico, with the Taos Pueblo reservation.
The main character is Eva, who is a deputy for the county. She would like to be tribal police but they are all male. She does do almost all of the work and liaisons when an incident involves someone from the tribe. She often interfaces with Cruz, who is a tribal officer.
Currently she is hunting for her best friend, Paloma, and three others, who have been missing more than a week. Paloma has taken off a few times on a drug binge since her accident. Her son is a senior in high school and on his own when she is gone. He pushes Eva to keep investigating. Between the two of them, they come up with leads. The story shares with us the actions of the “villain” so we know. Eva knows soon but can’t track them down or the evidence she needs.
I enjoyed the culture and learning more about the talents and foods. They have a variety of historical art and crafts which are less available and practiced as time passes. There is some personal growth for several of the characters in addition to trying to beat an addiction to drugs.
The first in the Eva “Lightening Dance” Duran series is a nice introduction to her life and work. It will be interesting to see where she goes from here. Hopefully, we will see some updates on the characters here besides Eva, and they will be supporting in the next book.
This was my first listen to this narrator. Her female voices felt right but the male voices sounded too high to me. The performance did not take me out of the story though. I listened at my usual 1.5x speed.
Listen to a clip: HERE
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