A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
From USA TODAY bestselling author Stephen Graham Jones comes a “masterpiece” (Locus Magazine) of a novel about revenge, cultural identity, and the cost of breaking from tradition. Labeled “one of 2020’s buzziest horror novels” (Entertainment Weekly), this is a remarkable horror story that “will give you nightmares—the good kind of course” (BuzzFeed).
From New York Times bestselling author Stephen Graham Jones comes a novel that is equal parts psychological horror and cutting social commentary on identity politics and the American Indian experience. Fans of Jordan Peele and Tommy Orange will love this story as it follows the lives of four American Indian men and their families, all haunted by a disturbing, deadly event that took place in their youth. Years later, they find themselves tracked by an entity bent on revenge, totally helpless as the culture and traditions they left behind catch up to them in a violent, vengeful way.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Ever had a sneaking suspicion that you were being followed by someone or something? Stephen Graham Jones takes that creepy sensation to terrifying extremes in his spine-chilling horror novel. Ten years after an elk hunt that went terribly wrong, four friends, all members of the Blackfeet tribe, are trying to go on with their lives. Two left the reservation after that mysterious event and two stayed, but now they all find themselves being stalked by a shape-shifting, vengeful, and evil creature that seems to know exactly what happened back then. Jones’ novel is marked by a melancholy sense of spiritual loss and is full of searing social commentary on what it means to be a “good Indian” in a white man’s world. His brilliantly multilayered story steadily builds up a sense of dread, shining a gruesome spotlight on the bloody consequences of losing contact with your heritage—or worse, turning your back on it.
Jones (Mapping the Interior) spins a sharp, remarkable horror story out of a crisis of cultural identity. Lewis and his three childhood friends, now in their 30s, have all moved away from the soul-sucking depression of the Blackfeet Reservation where they grew up, leading Lewis to believe "he deserves some big Indian award for having... avoided all the car crashes and jail time and alcoholism on his cultural dance card." Then a mysterious entity in the form of an elk begins to dog Lewis's every move. Though he doesn't understand why the elk-shaped demon has come to haunt him, he slowly realizes it wants revenge for him distancing himself from his ancestors' beliefs. As people around Lewis start to die, his paranoia about the elk mounts, leading him to acts of violence of his own. Jones's writing is raw, balancing on the knife-edge between dark humor and all-out gore as he forces his characters to reckon with their pasts, as well as their culture's. This novel works both as a terrifying chiller and as biting commentary on the existential crisis of indigenous peoples adapting to a culture that is bent on eradicating theirs. Challenging and rewarding, this tale will thrill Jones's fans and garner him plenty of new readers.
The Only Good Indians Review
*Thank you to Bookish First and Gallery Books for my review copy*
I wanted to read this book because it’s an own voices story written by an Indigenous Author. Even though I was able to finish the book I had a hard time with the writing style which made it difficult for me to connect to the story. I did enjoy the cultural aspect of the story which is why I read own voices novels to learn something new. I think this is a book I may have to listen to on audio and see if it will work better for me that way.
Awful, confusing. Violent and poorly written.