Movel of the Month
If you are looking for a historical, Western-type drama featuring Native Americans and Mexicans, this may be your type of novel. Set in Texas, three generations of the McCullough family are followed through the pages of this story. Chapters dance between voices and jump back and forth from the mid 1800’s to present day. It starts off with Eli McCullough, who is kidnapped as a teenager by a Comanche tribe and though he is resistant at first, eventually becomes a respected member of the Native family. He doesn’t spend too much time with his captors but in the months that he travels with them, he learns their way of life, their beliefs and even their language. Indeed, he bonds to quite a few of the members in the tribe that when he finds himself back in American society, he feels closer to the Comanches than the white people around him. Peter, his son, has his own struggles when he marries a woman for business purposes but really loves a Mexican, whose family is at war with his. Peter’s daughter, Jeannie, lives through her teenage years while the Second World War rages on across the seas in Europe and then has to face the business prospects of the property she has inherited (which is abundant with oil).
HisLit title read-alikes:
If you were a fan of this particular book, here are others that may interest you.
Texas by James A. Michener
A Tale Out of Luck by Willie Nelson with Mike Blakely
Sun Going Down by Jack Todd
HisLit author read-alikes:
If you like Meyer’s style, you may want to try other authors who are similar to him:
-Jeffrey Archer (He writes everything from Family Saga to psychological short stories to melodramatic Suspense stories. These are complex tales, filled with plot twists and details, whether of the times and places or the background history. Themes of politics, financial chicanery, conspiracies, and revenge fill his cinematic plots. Start with: Only Time Will Tell.)
-Bill Brooks (His work is dramatic and intricately plotted, focusing on ‘Western stories’ or ‘Frontier and pioneer life’. Start with: Winter Kill.)
-Larry McMurty (He is best known for de-romanticizing the American West, both past and present. McMurtry evokes a distinct sense of place as the reader smells the water trough and feels the immense size of the land. Leisurely-paced, long novels allow for the lyrical development of unforgettable, vivid characters, particularly the women. McMurtry is brutally honest about the hardships faced by settlers and his novels have a melancholy tone of loss as they take a wistful look at the waning of the Old West. Start with: Lonesome Dove.)
This is the first time I read an epic Western family saga. I quite enjoyed it and I am sure that the details of Comanche life, tensions between whites and Mexicans, as well as the boom of the oil industry will pique your interest too.