Library Journal - Library JournalThe author of a study guide for Dances with Wolves here briefly discusses characters and events of the westward movement in seven topical chapters arranged chronologically. Regrettably, factual errors abound. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid died in Bolivia, not Argentina. Custer was a lieutenant colonel, not a colonel, at the battle of Little Big Horn, and only the five troops under his immediate command were destroyed there, not the ``entire regiment.'' Sitting Bull, reported as killed on the Cheyenne River Reservation, actually died at Standing Rock. This list could easily continue, and the lack of a bibliography further diminishes the book's usefulness. Any library with Time-Life's ``The Old West'' series is already much better served. Not recommended in spite of its interesting illustrations.-- Daniel Liestman, Seattle Pacific Univ.
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 9 Up-- An oversized, illustrated book for browsers. The contents are standard bits of information about people you'd expect to be included--explorers, soldiers, some Native Americans, western women (a good chapter), and a few others. The black-and-white or full-color pictures are generally accompanied by brief biographical or explanatory paragraphs or captions; in addition, there is some general history throughout. Mancini professes to present `` . . . historically accurate portrayals of the men and women . . . with a bit of popular legend added for fun . . . .'' An example of ``fun'' may be that Custer's men referred to him as ``Hard Ass.'' The biggest gaffe is a photo of the ``bleak, desert landscape'' that faced the Mormon settlers; it shows the saguaro, organ pipe, and cholla cacti typical of the Sonoran desert but not of the area around the Great Salt Lake. The mention of mining, which played such a large part in the development of the West, is limited to the gold run of the 49ers and those who followed, and skips copper and coal entirely. A two-page ``Wild West Time Chart'' is difficult to figure out, but the index is good. The bibliography lists mostly sources published in the 1970s. Still, it's a nice book to dip into. --George Gleason, Department of English, Southwest Missouri State University, Springfield
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