What the staff at Poor Richard’s suggests for your next great read

Each week, as part of SunLit – The Sun’s literary division – we feature employee recommendations from bookstores across Colorado. This week, staff at Poor Richard’s Books & Gifts in Colorado Springs are recommending Fox Creek, Hell and Back and Calling for a Blanket Dance.


By William Kent Krueger
Atria Books
Aug 2022


From the publisher:

The old Ojibwe healer Henry Meloux had a vision of his death. Wandering lonely through the Northwoods, he tries to peacefully prepare for the end of his long life. But peace will elude him as hunters fill the woods in search of a woman named Dolores Morriseau, a stranger who had come to the Healer for protection and the gift of his wisdom.

Meloux leads this stranger and his great-niece, Cork O’Connor’s wife, to safety deep within the Boundary Waters, his home for more than a century. On his final journey to this beloved land, Meloux must do his best to outwit the deadly mercenaries who follow him.

From Jeffery Payne, Books Department Coordinator: Once again we are treated to Mr. Krueger’s unique blend of mysticism and Native American mysticism. This story revolves around Henry Meloux, age unknown, just before the “Ancient One”, but he does his best to outwit nature, the spirit world and the cruelty of humans and survive. The pace of the story is gripping and until the end we don’t know if Henry will succeed or be alive.

To hell and back: A Longmire mystery

By Craig Johnson
Sep 2022


From the publisher: What if you woke up in the middle of the street in the infamous town of Fort Pratt, Montana, where thirty young Native American boys perished in a tragic 1896 boarding school fire? What if every person you met that endless night was dead? What if you were covered in blood and a bullet from the pistol missed your hip? What if there was something out there in the yellowed sky—along with the deceased and the smell of ash and dust—something the Northern Cheyenne refer to as the Éveohtsé-heómese, the Hiking withoutthe taker of souls? What if you only know who you are because your name is printed on the leather sweatband of your cowboy hat, and what if it says your name is Walt Longmire – but you don’t remember him?

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From Jeffery Payne, Books Department Coordinator: Those of us who’ve followed the lives of Craig Johnson’s characters for the past 18 years – yes, I did the math, 18 years – won’t be entirely surprised by this latest installment in the Longmire series. However, it takes a few chapters in the book to realize that this story is a bit different than others. This is a ghost story. Sometimes we don’t know what reality we are experiencing and what perspective we should take. Intelligently written and a perfect read for a chilly autumn evening or two.

Call for the blanket dance

By Oscar Hokeah
Algonquin books
July 2022


From the publisher: Oscar Hokeah’s electronic debut takes us into the life of Ever Geimausaddle, whose family—part Mexican, part Native American—is determined to hold on to their community despite the odds. Ever’s father is injured by corrupt police officers at the border while visiting his family in Mexico while his mother struggles to keep her job and take care of her husband. And young Ever is lost and angry at everything he doesn’t understand, at this world that seems to undermine his sense of security. Ever’s relatives all have ideas about who he is and who he should be. His Cherokee grandmother, who knows the importance of closeness, urges the family to move across Oklahoma to be near her, while his grandfather, watching their traditions disappear, tries to reconnect with Ever through traditional pumpkin dances to unite his heritage. Through it all, every relative wants the same thing: to remind Ever of the rich and supportive communities that surround them, to hold them there, and to Ever learn to use the power given them to save not only themselves but the next generation.

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From Jeffery Payne, Books Department Coordinator: This is a story about heart, home and culture. We are introduced to the main character Ever through his family’s thoughts and observations. At times it is incredibly difficult to witness and read Ever’s story, then there are tender moments of kindness and total acceptance. We see firsthand the challenges of multiracial families and clashing mythologies. An incredible first novel, I can’t wait to read the next one from this clever author.

As part of The Colorado Sun Literary Division — SunLit — Presenting staff selections from bookstores across the state. Continue reading.

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