Book: The Killing of Monday Brown

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The Killing of Monday Brown: A Phoebe Siegel Mystery

Author: Sandra West Prowell
Publisher: Bantam

Set against the magnificence of Montana’s Big Sky, The Killing of Monday Brown delves deeply into Indian Country as Billings private investigator Phoebe Siegel comes into contact and conflict with Crow culture.

There are a lot of people who might want to see Monday Brown permanently removed: He wasn’t an ideal husband, his business practices left many things to be desired, and his profession was an insult to and assault on the lives of Native Americans. As a trader in Indian artifacts, Brown would stop at nothing to replenish his stock of goods, even if a grave had to be desecrated to ensure profit. When he disappears and the circumstantial evidence points to his having been murdered, the police move quickly to make an arrest.

Twenty-year-old Matthew Wolf makes a good suspect: a hot-blooded Gulf War veteran with a big mouth and a propensity for trouble. And he’s Indian.

Wolf’s family comes to Phoebe for help—at the suggestion of their cousin Kyle, Phoebe’s friend and a Yellowstone County sheriff’s deputy—but she’s reluctant to take the case. When they hand her a package with a finger-bone necklace and a scalp-lock bag, found in Matthew’s car, she’s even less inclined to get involved. Then the body of a young Indian man shows up virtually in her backyard, and Phoebe puts her questions aside and begins an investigation that takes her from the comfort and security of her world and onto the Crow reservation, where the color of her skin makes her the enemy. It begins with the purification of a sweat lodge…and ends with the infinite cold of a corpse. Between the two, Phoebe Siegel discovers a lot more than the truth behind The Killing of Monday Brown.

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