The Red Heart

( 14 )

Overview

The Slocum family of Northeastern Pennsylvania are the best of the white settlers, peace-loving Quakers who believe that the Indians hold the Light of God inside. It is from this good-hearted family that Frances is abducted during the Revolutionary war.

As the child's terror subsides, she is slowly drawn into the sacred work and beliefs of her adoptive mother and of all the women of these Eastern tribes. Frances becomes Maconakwa, the Little Bear Woman of the Miami Indians. ...

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The Red Heart

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Overview

The Slocum family of Northeastern Pennsylvania are the best of the white settlers, peace-loving Quakers who believe that the Indians hold the Light of God inside. It is from this good-hearted family that Frances is abducted during the Revolutionary war.

As the child's terror subsides, she is slowly drawn into the sacred work and beliefs of her adoptive mother and of all the women of these Eastern tribes. Frances becomes Maconakwa, the Little Bear Woman of the Miami Indians. Then, long after the Indians are beaten and their last hope, Tecumseh, is killed, the Slocums hear word of their long-lost daughter and head out to Indiana to meet their beloved Frances. But for Maconakwa, it is a moment of truth, the test of whether her heart is truly a red one.

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Editorial Reviews

Indianapolis Star
Compelling. . . Thom has woven a story as carefully as any native weaver does a piece of fabric.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Having already produced one novel about a white woman captured by the Shawnee, popular historical novelist Thom (Follow the River) uses an actual captivity narrative as the inspiration for an ambitious, epic novel based on the well-known true-life story of Frances Slocum. The five-year-old daughter of a Pennsylvania Quaker family, Slocum was kidnapped by Delaware Indians in 1778 and adopted by an Indian woman who raised the child as her own. In Thom's telling of her story, we see Slocum grow into a respected figure among the Miamis, becoming MaconakwaLittle Bear Womanand raising a family on her own. The events of her life are set against the gradual destruction of Indian life on the early U.S. frontier. After Tecumseh's historic defeat at the hands of treacherous future president William Henry Harrison, the Miamis are banished from their lands and Maconakwa is forced to choose between the two cultures. Her choice reveals that she does indeed have the "red heart" of the title. Thom's research is exhaustive, his eye for detail impressive. The scope of his tale will draw in readers undaunted by his natural expansiveness. (Oct.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345364715
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 544
  • Sales rank: 208,919
  • Product dimensions: 4.21 (w) x 6.88 (h) x 1.34 (d)

Meet the Author

James Alexander Thom lives in the Indiana hill country near Bloomington with his wife, Dark Rain of the Shawnee Nation, United Remnant Band. He has been a U.S. Marine, a newspaper and magazine editor, and a member of the faculty at the Indiana University Journalism School. Thom is the author of Follow the River, Long Knife, From Sea to Shining Sea, Panther in the Sky, for which he won the prestigious Western Writers of America Spur award for best historical novel, and The Children of First Man.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 14 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(7)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

(2)

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Sort by: Showing all of 14 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 29, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I LOVE THIS BOOK!

    Another wonderful story written by James Alexander Thom. My first novel I read of his was "Follow the River" and from that wonderful story I was hooked on his novels. He is a brilliant author and every book is an enchanting story that brings you into the characters lives along with their surroundings. I would have to say this by far the best story I have read. It's an adult version of "Standing in the Light", from the Dear America diaries. This story begins by the kidnapping of Frances when she is only five by Lenape Indians. For seventy years she lived among and as Native. She went through many obstacles not only as a woman but as a Native. At a young age she is married to a Lenape warrior (Like Wood.) The marriage only lasts a few years from his mistreatment of her caused by his addition to alcohol. Eventually she marries a Miami warrior (The Awl, who later becomes Deaf Man.) She has two sons and two daughters by this man and they live a long, happy, and romantic life together. After her husband dies and her daughters marry she decided to tell her story, believing that she shouldn't die with her secret. Soon her story has reached her relatives who after many years of searching for her find peace. This is a must read story that brings the reader to many historical events in Native American history. I really hope that Hollywood makes a movie of this novel and many other novels by James Alexander Thom.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2006

    A clash of cultures produces a memorable heroine

    Five year old Frances Slocum, a quaker girl, is taken in an Indian raid and given to a woman of the tribe to replace her children lost in raids by the whites. Frances, named first 'good face,' is lovingly embraced by her foster mother and then grandparents, and becomes a respected member of her adoptive people. After a long, bitter struggle with the whites, Good Face, now known as Maconaqua, has one square mile of land left for her family and remaining people to survive on. Then her Quaker family, who have been searching for her for years, appear in a nearby village and ask to see her. Maconaqua must decide if her heart is truly red or white. * Based on a true story, the story, the memorable characters, and the writing make this novel one of the best culture clash novels I have read. Highly recommended.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2012

    Anonymous

    A poignant tale as told by the native American point of view. Made me ashamed to be white.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 18, 2012

    good reading

    my husband read this book,he said really good

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2001

    An exciting adventure!

    Another great book from Thom. Excellently written and discribed well. Really paints a picture in your mind and makes you think you're there. Once you start you can't put it down.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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