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Shadow of the moon takes us on a great expedition from Scotland to the untamed wilds of the Ohio River Valley and Beyond. Large print fiction

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Several Golden Spur Awards for Best Western Historical Novel, as well as the Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Contribution and Achievement in Western American Lettres, have come Jones's way for his 15 historicals (The Treaty of Medicine Lodge, etc.). Now the author scores again, with an epic family saga of life on America's frontier from 1772 to 1827. Though naïve and inexperienced, young Scot immigrant Robert Chesney quickly adapts to the hardships, dangers and challenges of frontier life, becoming a skilled woodsman and scout. He settles in the wilderness of western Pennsylvania, but the American Revolution soon pulls him east to fight the British, first on the disastrous expedition to capture Quebec and later at the stunning American victory at Saratoga. Marrying Nalambigi, a Narraganset-Abanaki Indian, Chesney moves with his new family to the Ohio Valley, though more than once he is called away to fight Indians or the British. Meanwhile, strong-willed Nalambigi raises four children and builds a prosperous business empire in the white man's world. Informed by the tides of history, peopled by a vivid cast of real (Benedict Arnold; Aaron Burr) and imagined characters, this is a rousing adventure yarn, told with power and grace. Film, dramatic, first serial, translation rights: Wieser and Wieser. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Kirkus Review

With his customary craft and brio, Jones (This Savage Race, 1993, etc.) records the progress of an Old World pilgrim and his heirs during America's formative years. Robert Chesney, a Scotsman who emigrated to Ulster in search of a better life, is only too happy to quit Georgian Belfast for the wilds of Pennsylvania. Within a few years of making a home for himself on the Monongahela beyond Fort Pitt, however, the colonies take on England in a war for independence. Sergeant Bobby (as he's soon known) joins the revolution and marches to Quebec under the command of Colonel Benedict Arnold. On this abortive campaign, he wins the love of an Indian maid named Nalambigi and acquires a small fortune in gold from a British wagon train that's been ambushed. When peace finally comes, Bobby and Nalambigi trek further west, settling in the thriving riverfront community that becomes Cincinnati. But fiddle-footed Bobby spends precious little time in their new home; instead, he's often off scouting for Lewis and Clark in the Northwest Territory, helping Mad Anthony Wayne suppress insurgent tribes, and otherwise keeping to the backwoods. Meanwhile, Nalambigi is content to raise their children and quietly make her way in local business. Ever eager to beat the white man at his own games, the quirky and enterprising matriarch nurtures the commercial talents of one son (Campbell) and encourages another (Gance) to follow in the forest footsteps of his father. Campbell goes on to expand the Chesney empire while rough-and-tumble Gance runs off to fight for Oliver Hazard Perry in the Battle of Lake Erie. With the Queen City becoming ever more civilized, Nalambigi passes from the scene a year after the Missouri Compromise suggests that her beloved republic may be in for even greater shocks. Thanks to a stubbornly provident streak, however, she dies knowing her grandchildren can, if they choose, test themselves against the westering frontier. A grand generation-spanning tale that brings a melting-pot past to vivid life.