Drew’s #16 — Empire of the Summer Moon by G.S. Gwyne

 

Really interesting historical narrative following the American/Indian war from the point of view of the Comanche front (that is, the plains area of the U.S.); particularyly in relation to Quanah Parker–the half-white Comanche chief who ended the Indian wars in his surrender.  The book takes a look at both sides and does a good job of juxtaposing the atrocities committed on/by both–necessary to give a real perspective.  What we find is that there are people who respond violently out of anger and outrage, people who suffer horribly and needlessly, innocents (in terms of the here present conflict), brave and noble men and women, and, if nothing else, some VERY interesting people forged in VERY turbulent times.  What’s intriguing, too, is that there’s no single point for any finger.  Like a number of conflicts in more recent history, this story highlights that grace and forgiveness are the only answers, sometimes.

 

The book covers a long period of time and goes into great detail to tell the stories of principle players and their circumstances.  From bands of settlers to the Comanche and their compatriots, and all the warriors, politicians, leaders, and unfortunates caught in between, this book paints the circumstances vividly against the environment and terrain of the great plains.  Fantastic book!  A must for any history buff.

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