Cover Image: The Only Good Indians

The Only Good Indians

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Member Reviews

I struggled with how to rate/review this book. I didn’t dislike it, but I don’t know that I liked it, either. I learned a lot about the culture and I enjoyed that aspect of it, and it was a different type of horror than what I usually read, so that was really interesting. But I the writing style wasn’t quite my preference so I struggled with following everything at times, and there were times I was just flat out confused by the writing and the story. But I plan on reading more by this author, so overall my reading experience wasn’t negative.
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This was a different book than I was expecting but so much better. I'm glad to have found Jones' writing and will absolutely be locating more of his work.
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Stephen Graham Jones is on a roll. His catalog is long, but since Mongrels in 2015,  (one of, if not his best) his audience and acclaim have continued to rise. It’s great to see a writer receiving the recognition they so rightly deserve. Jones’s star is rising and will glow even brighter.
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This was not my kind of book. Would be amazing someone who likes this. I had a hard time following the story.
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BOOK REVIEW: The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones.
I originally had my wish granted by NetGalley and received this book as an eARC. I finally read it this October for the Spooktober read-a-thon and it has taken me some time to collect my thoughts on this book. It was released in July 2020 so please find yourself a copy because while I will give my review here, I think this is a book that will resonate quite differently with each reader and I encourage you to read it and see what you think about it.

The Only Good Indians is the first book that I've read by Stephen Graham Jones, but it definitely won't be my last. He did a remarkable job of bringing the reader into the world of four Native American men struggling. For each of them it is different, and yet the same. They are each reminded of a disturbing event from their past that they never quite processed. 

The beginning of the book is quite slow, but the more I think about it, I think that is what draws you in. You get a clear picture of how these men are treated off the reservation and how inter-cultural relationships challenge traditional ways. 

How will their past come back to haunt them? Can the violence be brought to an end? It's a clear story about vengeance and will make you reflect on your own thoughts and beliefs. 

While I eventually have decided that I actually did enjoy this book, I encourage readers to not come to a snap decision and really mull over your thoughts at the end. Also, if you have problems reading about animal violence this book will not be for you.  And that is perfectly ok. Not every book is meant for every reader. 

If you've already read this book I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

Thoughtful Reading :)
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Fasten your seatbelt, folks. This is a wild ride. First, I will start off by saying I was expecting less Sci fi and more straight forward human horror story. I tend to go into books fairly blind. But having said that, this book digs deep into the imagination. It was hard for me to follow Lewis' dive down into paranoid "who's the Elk" country. I was for sure he would come out to be diagnosed as schizophrenic. Nope! This is the real deal! I won't spoil any more of the story, but suffice it to say that you will like the characters and all the twists this story presents. I liked the writing style and the concise language used to convey more atmospheric parts of the book. I thought that was really well done and not drawn out. Story isn't my bag but I bet a lot of other folks will really enjoy it.

Thanks to Net Galley for providing a copy for review!
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After hearing all the hype about this book, I was very excited to read it! Unfortunately, this one just fell short for me. I was bored and uninterested for almost the entire story and never felt any emotion toward it. I know this one is loved by many people; it just didn't work for me! 

Content warning for violence, animal and human death.

Thank you to NetGalley and Gallery/Sage Press for the ARC of The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones!
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A horror story written in the classic style that is hardly found anymore. It tells the story of four Blackfeet friends whose lives take a tragic turn after a hunt that went horribly wrong and that awakened a supernatural being seeking revenge. I have to say that in this case, all my support goes to the elk, since I am against hunting. 
The book portrays the mistreatment to which Native Americans are subjected, even now, among other situations that make this book one of those rare works that is still worth reading. 

WARNING: There is a very, very descriptive hunting scene that some people may not bear to read, but which is necessary to understand the motivation of the characters.
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WOW. I absolutely loved this brilliant #ownvoices horror story.  SGJ is always amazing; I adore most of his work.  This novel though. . . wow. Blew the rest of his work away in my opinion. 

This novel is told in a dual timeline between the present, and 10 years in the past.  In the past, four lifelong friends make the horrible decision to shoot a whole bunch of elk on lands that were protected by their Blackfoot elders. Almost immediately, strange and terrible things start happening to everyone involved. 

There's not a lot to say about this story without giving it away, but if you can handle animal death, extreme revenge, a ton of gore and body horror, and racially-motivated violence and death, then run to buy this one. You will not regret it.  

4.5 stars rounded up to 5.
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A complex original story.  It is a bit of a slow burn but overall it will give you a lot to think about!
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I ended up dnfing this book at 50% I thought I would really enjoy this book. That sadly was not the case. It couldn’t keep me interested at all. I don’t really know what happened in it either.
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Unfortunately, this one just didn’t do it for me. It may work for others, but I couldn’t jive with the pacing, character decisions, or the tone.
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This horror novel follows four American Indian men after a disturbing event from their youth puts them in a desperate struggle for their lives. It's horrifying, to be sure, but it also follows a thought-provoking revenge arc by way of intergenerational trauma, guilt, honor, and sportsmanship. A unique, remarkable achievement!
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Creepy , dark , twisted and very strange in one story, based on the Native American folklore Deer Woman. I do have to say that the cover kind of throw me when I first saw it because it had me wondering what the cover had to do with the story but as soon as I started to read I put that question out of my mind , because I wasn't thinking of it anymore but of the story that was giving me goosebumps and making me jump at every sound .As well as thinking there was something or someone waiting in the shadows to strike when the timing is right, and I do have to admit at the time I was reading it , it was night time, as well as storming and I was alone in my house with the lights turned off , with only my 3 dogs there with me, so that also helped set the atmosphere of the book.
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Stephen Graham Jones is INCREDIBLY talented, holy heck! I love his way of blending literary realness with horror - this was beautiful written, but also terrifying.  I'm not sure if this is entirely horror - there's a lot of thriller vibes to it, and then there's the magic within the story, and within SGJ's writing itself that pulls you in, keeping you entranced and flipping the pages. I loved this, everything about it, and won't stop recommending it - 5 stars!!
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This made me a lot more emotional than I'd anticipated. First, I love how Stephen Graham Jones writes — detached yet visceral, descriptive yet ominous. I was hooked from the beginning. I enjoyed reading a horror novel from the perspective of an Indigenous person, especially since Jones so expertly mixed themes from different Native cultures with the horror narrative. This book scared me, angered me, made me want to be a vegan, made my heart sad. My only issue was with the AWFUL descriptions of the mutilated animals, though again it's really just a testament to Jones's writing since he was able to evoke such a strong emotional reaction in me. Anyway, I loved this book.
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Great setup with wonderfully drawn characters and a steady ratcheting up of dread followed by moments of sheer horror and gore. My only complaint would be the ending, which I felt to be anticlimactic given all that came before.

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the free ARC
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Who doesn't love a good ghost story? That may depend on the individual and what stories they've witnessed. For every The Haunting of Hill House or The Turn of the Screw, there are a thousand examples of poorly-written, doomed-to-be-direct-to-video dreck. A good ghost story is more than just creaking staircases and jump scares. A good ghost story has real emotion, a well-laden atmosphere, and a spirit with a clear motivation, whether its malice or revenge, or even both. Adding to the list of great ghost stories is Stephen Graham Jones, whose latest The Only Good Indians shows a unique ghost story that is miles ahead of the multitude of mundane bump-in-the-night tales.
I classify this tale as a ghost story, but the antagonist isn't wearing a white flowing gown nor do they rattle any chains. The spirit that follows four Native American best friends is just as much of a character as the four men who transgressed by hunting on the wrong land. The book doesn't seem to have a first-person or third person narrator, but weaves its way through the narratives and lives (or unlives) of the four men and one vengeful spirit in such as way as to not be jarring at all. Rather, the reader becomes like a spirit that travels behind the eyes and into the minds of the various people that are tied together in this story.
The book unveils many issues, ranging from cultural identity to the strength, for better or worse, of tradition, but it also showcases Stephen Graham Jones as a top-notch storyteller. Somehow offering sumptuous description without flowery words, Jones's words maintain that tricky balance of moving the reader through the story at a quick pace while also immersing them in life on the Reservation and beyond. No character in this story feels underdeveloped or one-dimensional and when tragedy befalls them, the reader might audibly gasp in shock at the brutality and the emotion of their passing. Rare is the author who can balance between brutality and beauty, of storycraft and carnage, but Stephen Graham Jones, called the Jordan Peele of horror fiction, looks at modern issues in a way that makes everyone want to look as well.
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC copy.

This is the second of Jones' books that I have read, I found him pretty creepy again.

I have always thought the Indians got a raw deal from the white man.  Somehow, I have just started learning about the modern Indian culture and how they are still reaping that inheritance.  This book goes into some of that and you can't help but feel your heart being ripped out by it.

I really appreciated having, what I think, must be traditional mythology inserted into a modern narrative. So cool!  While the story dragged in places, this is what kept me going.  Yes, I got properly creeped out, and I don't read that much horror, so I can't say if this original or not, but I did enjoy it.

The change in persons in the narrative really confused me at times.  Maybe that was on purpose, but it made it hard to follow..
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A night in a place reserved to elders of their tribe , results in an event that continues to haunt four young men. Long after the death and destruction of that night men are tormented to see things they know are not there. Ghosts are appearing and not taking no for an answer. Riveting, gory, heart  stopping. All words apply here. A tale of lives changed by the focus of youth.
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