Hasn't he lived long enough? Why not? I could take him like a thief in the night. This is how the Thief thinks. He serves death, the vacuum, the unknown. He's always waiting. Always there. Seventeen-year-old Nina Barrows knows all about the Thief. She's intimately familiar with his hunting methods: how he stalks and kills at random, how he disposes of his victims' bodies in an abandoned mine in the deepest, most desolate part of a desert. Now, for the first time, Nina has the chance to do something about the serial killer that no one else knows exists. With the help of her former best friend, Warren, she tracks the Thief two thousand miles, to his home turf—the deserts of New Mexico. But the man she meets there seems nothing like the brutal sociopath with whom she's had a disturbing connection her whole life. To anyone else, Dylan Shadwell is exactly what he appears to be: a young veteran committed to his girlfriend and her young daughter. As Nina spends more time with him, she begins to doubt the truth she once held as certain: Dylan Shadwell is the Thief. She even starts to wonder . . . what if there is no Thief? From debut author Margot Harrison comes a brilliantly twisted psychological thriller that asks which is more terrifying: the possibility that your nightmares are real . . . or the possibility that they begin and end with you?The Killer In Me is published by Hyperion, which is part of Hachette Books.
Dylan, it turns out, is Nina's older brother. Their mother, Becca, gave Nina up for adoption when she was a baby. The reason The Killer In Me gets tagged for Native content is because Becca's great-grandmother (Nina's great-great-grandmother) was Navajo.
Here's the thing: There is absolutely nothing about how she is developed that makes this Navajo ancestry matter. Harrison could have made Nina and Dylan's ancestry be any of the many different Native ones in the southwest and it would not have mattered one bit.
But--thankfully--that didn't happen. We don't know why they can do that.
My big question: why is this great-great-grandmother Navajo? It doesn't matter one bit to the story. So, why is it here? It feels to me that The Killer In Me may be an example of a writer creating an aspect of a story with DIVERSITY in mind.
Like I said, nothing turns on this aspect of Nina's identity. Someone might argue that the Navajo ancestry makes it possible to set the book in the southwest, but, that great-great-grandma could be anybody! In the southwest, there are white people, and Spanish people, and Native people of many nations...
Again: why is this great-great-grandmother Navajo? What did I miss?!
Because I think it is meaningless, I'm giving this a not-recommended label.