Sacred Clowns (1993)

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1993

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Yesterday a teacher was killed at a mission school on the Navajo Reservation, but today in the Tano Indian pueblo murder seems inconceivable as a tribal ceremony unfolds. The sacred kachinas have danced into the ancient plaza, and the koshare in their grotesque disguises have tumbled down from the rooftops to ape the foolishness of humankind. At first, the crowd welcomes this troupe of sacred clowns with laughter. But something in one clown's red wagon hushes the crowd. And then murder strikes at Tano.

Leaphorn and Chee have been recently reassigned as a team for the Special Investigations Office of the Navajo Tribal Police, but their paring is still an uneasy one. Though the murder at Tano is out of their jurisdiction and seemingly unconnected to the murder of the school teacher, when a runaway student ties the cases together they must get past their unease to solve this case.