Ann Simko’s third installment in The Coyote Moon Series, The Coyote’s Song, takes readers on a journey the Thomas brothers will never forget. As Montana thinks to himself in this story, "You can't change who you are, you can only make peace with it.’ This is ultimately what he must learn to do as he embarks on the journey of a lifetime.
After his mother dies, Montana Thomas is on a quest to know who his father is – the man he never knew – and where he came from. One thing his mother once told him, "Listen to the coyotes. They need someone to hear their song,” is what pushes Montana to fight for the truth and solve the mysteries of his past. It also serves as his hope of making right what went wrong in his relationship with his mother during her final years. The coyote song is carried through the mountains and the desert, and Montana wants to answer that call. Despite hesitation and warnings from his maternal grandfather, he gets a name. "All I could think of was the name my grandfather had given me. A name I had searched a lifetime for. …. The ghost that had haunted me all of my life had a name. Now all I needed to do was give him a face." So he and his brother, Dakota, set out to find information about their father. Seems innocent enough. Just a trip to Montana to look up their heritage -- or is it? What they find turns out to be completely unexpected, and deadly. The uncover information certain people don't want them to know. People who would kill to keep that information secret. "I had started this journey a lifetime ago, seeking the truth of who I was and where I came from,” Montana thinks to himself. “The pure and simple truth. I realized in a moment of perfect clarity that the truth is rarely pure and it is never simple." The adventure takes the Thomas brothers through their secretive, terrifying past, reuniting them with family they never knew they had and challenging what they are willing to fight, and possibly even die, for.
Unlike the first two books, this one is written in Montana's POV.
I am not a fan of prequels, but the author's admission of how she wanted to know Montana better after the first two books helped me to understand him better, as well. In that way, I understood better why he is the way he is in the first two books, and how the Thomas brothers' unusual way of handling conflict is the tie that binds.
The best quote in this story comes from young Noah, a Native American boy who counsels Montana after witnessing the injured man attempt to climb up a mountainous path for several days only to meet defeat. Montana is too wounded and in too much pain to even climb up that path, yet he feels compelled to do so because he is determined to get better and get stronger. Noah asks him "Why's it so important that you nearly kill yourself all over again just to get there?" After Montana gives the boy an answer he is not satisfied with, Noah advises him of something that leaves a lasting impact on Montana: "I can save you a lot of effort, you're not going to find who you were up there. That person doesn't exist anymore, the best you can do is try to figure out who you want to be, and then maybe be satisfied with who you are right now."
The Coyote's Song is more than a story about finding family, discovering your heritage and learning about who you are. It's a testament to the strong bond a family can have no matter how far apart they may be or how many years have passed since the family members came together as one.
Montana Thomas goes in search for a father he never knew and finds the reasons behind his mother’s years of silence.
With his mother recently dead and with not even a name to start with, Montana and his brother Dakota begin a journey to find not only their unknown father, but their culture, and the Indian heritage denied to them from the moment of their births.
Will Montana accept his father and the truth behind his disappearance? Will he be able to accept the truth about himself once his past is revealed? Or will he wish he’d left those secrets buried?