Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tears of the Mountain by John Addiego

I received a galley of this novel from NetGalley for review. This in no way affected my opinions.

Tears of the Mountain covers a particular area that I've never read before reading historical fiction. In alternating chapters we see the main story: July 4th 1876, during the 100th anniversary of American independence, someone is trying to turn Jeremiah McKinley's life upside down; the secondary story: flashbacks of Jeremiah's life starting in the 1840s to the 1860s from the trek his family took from Missouri to California to the Gold Rush and other events.

From the start of the 100th anniversary of America's birthday Jeremiah starts receiving mysterious cryptic messages throughout the day, comes across a little boy who seems to be channeling Jeremiah's dead father, and greets his old school teacher who soon finds himself in the middle of a murder to which Jeremiah becomes implicated in.

In flashbacks throughout the day, Jeremiah reflects on his life, from traveling to California and the life of the pioneers to the Bear War to the Gold Rush. All the while Jeremiah pines for Lucinda who is promised to another man. Jeremiah soon falls in love with another, marries and has a child, but tragedy soon strikes.

In the present day Jeremiah is scared that his second chance of happiness could be ruined. Threatened by whoever is sending him secret message - the fact that he could be hanged for possibly aiding a murderer -  Jeremiah is afraid that he may never see the people he loves again.

Tears of the Mountain was a well written engaging tale. The words were elegantly descriptive of a trying time in America's history through the eyes of Jeremiah.