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A Thief of Time published in 1988 by HarperCollins Publishers is just one of Tony Hillermans many mystery novels Tony Hillerman is well known for his ability to write great mystery novels Mike Smith has said It is Hillermans ability to transcend stereotypical detective fiction however which makes his writing so fascinating 1 Tony Hillerman is best known for his Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn mysteries set in the Southwest notes Brad Crawford 8 In Hillermans novel A Thief of Time he does an excellent job describing the settings of the story Hillerman once said in an interview I have to go to the reservation to the spot Ill be writing about to get comfortable with it I like to feel at home in my mind with the spot I have on the page Crawford 8 Settings in Hillermans novels play a big role in the plot of the stories Tony Hillerman has always had a great interest in the culture of the Southwestern Indian tribes and he enjoys writing stories based on the knowledge he has acquired A Thief of Time is a novel set on the Navajo reservation in New Mexico and Arizona It tells the story of an anthropologist Dr Eleanor Friedman-Bernal who has been missing for a week after going on a trip to look for Anasazi artifacts and two tribal policemen Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn who end up investigating the case Chee was originally tracking down a thief of a flatbed trailer and backhoe Crews 2 from a tribal storage unit for which he was responsible for The case soon becomes an investigation of murder when Chee finds the two men suspected of stealing the items murdered near an Anasazi grave site from which they had been stealing artifacts Joe Leaphorn who had originally been searching for the missing Dr Freidman-Bernal soon runs into Chee and they begin to work together on the case The two
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