Review: Archangel by Michael Vorhis

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Publisher: FreeFlight
Publishing Date: January 2011
ISBN: 9780983898504
Genre: Fiction
Rating: 2.0/5

Publisher Description: But coincidence, perhaps Fate, causes Mick Calahan to become entangled in the equally mysterious saga of strangers. And circumstances bring him unwillingly into the open, where looms his greatest fear–that his decisions might affect and destroy real lives.

Review: The cover art truly reflects what resides within.

Oh yay, reluctant hero with checkered past and a heart of gold,..time. There is evil white men and poor downtrodden natives with a hottie native temptress thrown in. And it all takes place in Buttfug, Montana. This was published back in 2011, so not sure why it is getting a new release.

So Padre Mick finds himself appointed by the Catholic Church to preside in Buttfug, only to find that the towns inhabitants are fugging weird. I mean, most people, if not all, are fugging weird but this town takes the cake. Mick finds two native boys lying in the street, unconscious and Joe Shmuck says that the first thing to learn living here is to mind your own business. Street toughs working for LUCIUS KNOX (lol) walk the town with impunity, raping and pillaging with the Sheriff’s collusion.

This read like Walking Tall, Billy Jack and Jack Reacher had a love child (see how I made a love triangle? Khul huh). Mick finds that LUCIUS KNOX is evil (duh) and is stealing Tribal land to conduct mining operations and means to eradicate Native life as we know it. His thugs walk around town beating up natives, raping native girls, hurling racial epithets and generally being dodgy all day long.
Mick’s final straw is when super racist thug, Daryl, rapes native temptress Gabriella. Blah, blah, blah Mick takes everyone down with the help of the Washokki and Tissoma tribes whom speak a Kalispel dialect.

FWIW, there is no such thing as the Washokki and Tissoma Tribes of Montana. There are no native “chapters” and corralled youth speaking in hushed Kalispel dialects. There is no Kalispel dialect (Kalispel, Spokane and Flathead speak a Salish dialect). Additionally, there are no towns with racist assholes walking around raping native girls, prostituting native girls. beating and killing native people and talking like that kid on the bridge playing banjo. There are no groups of Indians planning to kill whitey over a mining claim. There is no paying off or buying the Bureau of Indian Affairs. What this novel attains is the conjoining of two perceived disparate groups, the heavy application of race bait and culture trampling and POOF! there is your emotive content and story-line. I might be wrong about the tribes mentioned in this novel, but according to the Tribe I work for, there is the Salish-Kootenai, Crow, Blackfoot, Cheyenne, Sioux and a few others in Montana.

Here is my own opinion that resides outside the bounds of this novel. ” There seems to be this weird mockery of the tired and well worn racial shtick you saw in westerns as a kid is just not applicable by modern standards. Today, some groups that see and point the racist finger where none exists or hoist their culture in hopes of claiming ascendancy over others are guilty of inciting tension and fail to understand that by their lack of awareness and entrenched identities, that they merely serve their own egos.”

I get that this is just a fictionalized story meant to make some money and possibly broker a movie deal. The novel was really built for Hollywood and not the reader.

Although I understand the spin in fiction, I think the written word can be carefully crafted to imbibe the reader with certain realities while attempting to entertain. I think the author is a good writer but the recipe was way too clichéd’.

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