Abraham, self-reliant and a man of faith, contracts pioneer fever to migrate west from North Carolina in the 1800s. Whetting his appetite for adventure is Big Jen, who spins yarns about Six Bulls country in Missouri, with prairie grass as high as a horse's eye. Woven together are Abraham's confrontations with disasters, slavery, Hooker-the slaver, and American history leading to the Civil War. The novel captures the spirit of men and women carving out new lives on the frontier, revealing the roots of a new nation's greatness and its darkest shame, as war looms.
About the Author
The new series of "K" novels begins with Blood Tax, set in a very different era from the previous novels, 16th century, and location, the Fiefdom of Kostel on the Balkan Peninsula--right at the frontier dividing line between Muslim followers of the Ottoman Empire and Christian feudal serfs living and farming on the lands of the Hapsburg Monarchy. Turkish brigands attack Am Furtt, a small farming hamlet, creating terror, burning farms and abusing villagers. The objective of the Turks is to kidnap five-to-ten-year-old boys and girls as white slaves. The young ones are converted to Islam and prepared to serve the Sultan as loyal elitists--warriors, administrators, clergy and sex slaves. Maria is raped by the Azim, the leader. He divines that a child is conceived from the union and vows to return in five years to collect his son. After fighting battles on the shores of the Caspian Sea, Azim and his men return to Am Furtt. This time, the serfs are ready. The author's books are well researched and authentically portray the difficult life of serfs living under the lord of the castle in the 1600's.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I recommend this novel. Slavery is the underlying antagonist in this story. It is told through the eyes of Abraham, from his maturation during the Battle of New Orleans, to running his tobacco plantation in North Carolina, pioneer-first in Indiana, then Missouri, and lastly in his friendship for Andres. Throughout, the slaver Hooker tangles with Abraham. Yet, it is Big Jen, General Jackson's scout, who instructs Abraham that "God doesn't care the color of a man's skin; it's inside him where you find the mettle of a man." The story ranges over the initial battle, to conceiving a new way to provide workers for his tobacco fields that doesn't rely on slave labor, to the pioneering bug to go west. Indiana provides the settling for encountering Indians and that chapter and the last are as heartfelt as any I have read. This writer does capture your emotions and takes you along on Abraham's near half-century tale.