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This book is a collection of stories with a Navajo influence that only adds to the telling. Cayenne Chris Conroy is a long-experienced audio artist-cum-narrator with a solid grasp of voice, tenor, and character. The two meet in a perfect storm of an audiobook I couldn't stop listening to.
The stories pull no punches and don't apologize for offending the reader or making them uncomfortable. That only makes them more fascinating and addictive, really. The short-story lengths don't detract from the individual tales; they were written to be consumed in sips, not long draughts. The characters are complex and interesting without long back stories and Cayenne carries them higher than the words alone ever could.
This audiobook makes a good gift, like many stand alone books. The stories don't require a prior love for Native stories, horror or strange fiction, or even audiobooks in general. The stories are just good. The reader is just good. "Coyote Tales" is great.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Like another reviewer here, I first heard a few of Jim Bihyeh's tales on a podcast. Out of the hundreds of tales of I have heard on that particular program, I must say Bihyeh's were among the few that stood out to me over the others. They are well written, well performed by Conroy and most importantly, unique.
The stories are saturated in Navajo folklore, and to me, that is something I have seldom (if ever) have come across outside of an actual book written about a particular culture's folklore. Not only are you listening to captivating stories, but you feel as if you're learning a little something about the Navajo culture throughout the collection's entirety, which is definitely a plus for me or any avid reader for that matter.
These stories reminded me of reading legends and mythology when I was a child. Full of mysticism, magic, superstition.... but here these things seem almost believable. The look into the lives of the characters of each story paints an all too realistic world while there are dark forces at work all around them. When Coyote crosses your path, he can give hope, he can break you, he does as he pleases. Sometimes you aren't sure whether he's the bad guy or the good guy.
Conroy gives an almost perfect voice to these stories. His interpretation of Bihyeh's writing is impeccable. I am surprised to see that there are only 9 reviews of this collection so far. Any horror or fantasy enthusiast would enjoy these. Heck, I believe anyone would!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful