Paha Sapa, 'Black Hills', is an American Indian shaman who, as a young boy at the Battle of Little Bighorn, believes that he has taken the ghost of the dying General Custer into his body.
Sixty years later, while working as a dynamiter on Mount Rushmore, Paha Sapa plots to blow up the monument.
Meanwhile, Custer finds himself trapped in a strange, dark place and begins to write sensuous, heartbreaking missives to his beloved wife.
Thus begins an intricate, visionary story that sweeps across some of the most tumultuous and violent periods of American history, from the old West to the Dust Bowl of the 1930s and into our own time and beyond.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 464 pages
- Publisher: Quercus Publishing
- Publication Date: 06/01/2011
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9781849160902
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Review by KenTorgerson
After a small, slow start with minor confusion of what is really happening, this 19th century historical novel became compelling readable and informative about Custer, the Lakota Sioux, the Black Hills, Mt Rushmore, Gutzon Borglum the scuptor, the building of the Brooklyn Bridge by the Roeblings, the 1893 "White City" Chicago Columbian Exposition and the demise of Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull & Paha Sapa, our hero, after a life of loss & attempted atonement. It presents a satisfying swath of history & adventure from 1865 to WW11 mainly on the Great Praire & mainly from Simmon's native american perspective as experienced by Paha Sapa named after the Black Hills. One would have to be an economist or actuarist to go away unhappy from this book brimming with characters, story and ideas in an America that exists only in books like this and in the vigorous imagination of the author. He is everybit as good as he is prolific.