Flashback Friday: A Thief of Time

ffbutton2Flashback Friday is a weekly tradition started here at Bookshelf Fantasies, focusing on showing some love for the older books in our lives and on our shelves. If you’d like to join in, just pick a book published at least five years ago, post your Flashback Friday pick on your blog, and let us all know about that special book from your reading past and why it matters to you. Don’t forget to link up!

It’s mystery time this week on Flashback Friday!

A Thief of Time (Navajo Mysteries, #8)

A Thief of Time by Tony Hillerman
(published 1988)

 Synopsis (Goodreads):

A noted anthropologist vanishes at a moonlit Indian ruin where “thieves of time” ravage sacred ground for profit. When two corpses appear amid stolen goods and bones at an ancient burial site, Navajo Tribal Policemen Lt. Joe Leaphorn and Officer Jim Chee must plunge into the past to unearth the astonishing truth behind a mystifying series of horrific murders.

I always knew that there were quite a few books in Tony Hillerman’s Navajo Mysteries series — but ye-gads, I didn’t know just how many until today! According to Goodreads, the series consists of 18 novels, with the last one published in 2006.

The author, who died in 2008, was known for his detailed portrayal of tribal life and his respect for the cultures he portrayed, as well as for creating compelling mysteries and exciting lead characters.

A Thief of Time is the 8th book in the series, but was the first one that I read — picked up at random, as I recall, after hearing a friend mention it. And you know what? It was completely enjoyable, and didn’t leave me feeling as though I’d walked in in the middle of a story. A Thief of Time sucked me right into the story, and it didn’t matter that there was a backstory for Chee and Leaphorn that I wasn’t familiar with. I was able to enjoy the mystery and the characters, and picked up enough as I went along to fill in the blanks.

Over the years, I’ve read a few other Hillerman books (again, randomly), not in any sort of numerical order or by the publishing chronology, and I’ve always come away satisfied. In fact, I’d say that the Navajo Mysteries are fine to be read as stand-alones, so if you’re interested in sampling some compelling police drama featuring unusual settings and characters, grab a Hillerman book — any Hillerman book — and give it a try!

What flashback book is on your mind this week?

Note from your friendly Bookshelf Fantasies host: To join in the Flashback Friday fun:

  • Grab the Flashback Friday button
  • Post your own Flashback Friday entry on your blog (and mention Bookshelf Fantasies as the host of the meme, if you please!)
  • Leave your link in the comments below
  • Check out other FF posts… and discover some terrific hidden gems to add to your TBR piles!


Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

4 thoughts on “Flashback Friday: A Thief of Time

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