David Heska Wanbli Weiden, an enrolled member of the Sicangu Lakota nation, is author of the novel WINTER COUNTS (Ecco/HarperCollins, forthcoming August 25, 2020), chosen as one of 2020’s most anticipated books by Library Journal, USA Today, CrimeReads, BuzzFeed, The Rumpus, Electric Lit, Betches, Lit Hub, and Book Riot, and receiving rave reviews from Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and Booklist.
WINTER COUNTS is the story of a local Native American enforcer on the Rosebud Indian Reservation who becomes obsessed with finding and stopping the dealer who is bringing increasingly dangerous drugs into his community. It’s a Native thriller, an examination of the broken criminal justice system on reservations, and a meditation on Native identity. Benjamin Percy, author of The Dark Net, says, “The full-throttle, can’t-put-it-downness of this novel is a fact. WINTER COUNTS is a hell of a gripping debut, perfectly plotted, and David Heska Wanbli Weiden is a major new voice in crime fiction, indigenous fiction, and American literature.”
Weiden is also the author of the children’s book SPOTTED TAIL (Reycraft, 2019), a biography of the great Lakota leader and winner of the 2020 Spur Award from the Western Writers of America. He’s published in Shenandoah, Yellow Medicine Review, Transmotion, Criminal Class Review, Tribal College Journal, and other magazines. He’s the fiction editor for Anomaly, journal of international literature and arts, and he teaches writing at the Lighthouse Writers Workshop in Denver.
He received his MFA in Creative Writing from the Institute of American Indian Arts. He’s an alumnus of VONA, a Tin House Scholar, a MacDowell Colony Fellow, a Ragdale Foundation resident, and received the PEN/America Writing for Justice Fellowship. He’s an active member of the Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Western Writers of America, and the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers. He’s Professor of Native American Studies and Political Science at Metropolitan State University of Denver, and lives in Colorado with his two sons.
His last name, Weiden, is pronounced “Why-den.” Heska Wanbli is prounounced “Heh-ska Wahn-blee.” His nation, the Sicangu Lakota, is pronounced “See-chon-goo Lah-coat-ah.”