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Son of the Morning Star: Custer and the Little Bighorn Paperback – October 30, 1997
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“Impressive in its massive presentation of information . . . Son of the Morning Star makes good reading--its prose is elegant, its tone the voice of dry wit, its meandering narrative skillfully crafted. Mr. Connell is above all a storyteller, and the story he tells is vastly more complicated than who did what to whom on June 25, 1876.” ―Page Stenger, The New York Times Book Review
“Son of the Morning Star leaves the reader astonished.” ―The Washington Post
“A scintillating book, thoroughly researched and brilliantly constructed.” ―The Wall Street Journal
Top Customer Reviews
Facts abound. I started this book thinking it would primarily focus on Gen. Custer and the fight. While those topics are the framework of the book, Connell spends quite a bit of time exploring various indian chiefs, indian practices, previous conflicts and the conditions that produced one of our country's most celebrated battles. First person quotes are abundent and the author usually produces two or more sides to every episode. These explorations underscore how difficult getting at a true history is, particulary when pride and ego rest on a particular telling of an event. He has done very good research.
This is a brutal book. American and indian savagry are laid bare. Warfare and existence on the frontier were not pretty. The "rules" of war were abandoned by both sides with regard to the taking of prisoners or the frequent butchering of women and children along with those unlucky enough to be in the path of maurading soldiers or indian bands. Connell's book leaves no doubt that American notions of racial superiority, mainfest destiny and economics created the situation in which the indians would fight in the extreme to protect their lands from white encroachment. However, the author also underscores that most of the indian tribes were brutal and ruthless when attacking other tribes, lone indians and in their own rituals and customs.Read more ›
A prime example of this is within the first ten pages of the book, Connell is writing about President Hayes' Court of Inquiry, three years AFTER the battle.
Another thing which Connell does masterfully is tell BOTH sides of the tale. The Dakota and 7th Cavalry are given equal weight throughout the book and the author pours pertinent information as well as trivial but entertaining facts at the reader. And along with giving biographies on Reno and Benteen, the reader learns just as much background information on Gall, Crazy Horse and Two Moon.
About the only person I suggest shy away from this book is a college student cramming for a paper because there's no way they'd be able to find the needed info with Connell's writing style. However, if they don't procrastinate and began reading at the beginning of the semester, I promise you won't find another book with more info on the subject.
If you do read "Son of the Morning Star," be prepared to take a trip out to the high plains of Montana to see the battlefield. Connell's book instilled a 'must-see' desire into me on having to see the Bighorn for myself and I plan to go next summer. See you there!
I was looking for a book that would go a long way in providing an objective view of the events surrounding The Battle of the Little Bighorn and found such a book in Son of the Morning Star.
Evan S. Connell does a masterful job of telling the story. He provides excellent background history and tells how information, or the lack thereof, available to Custer at the time may have contributed to his ultimate demise. Arrogance and racism have long been attributed to Custer's disastrous campaign but Connell helps paint probably the most accurate and objective portrait of the colorful general to date. Custer was arrogant but Connell shows that there was much more to the story.
A great read!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Had this book back in the 90's loaned it out & never got it back. I think this is the best book ever written about Custer and the Little Big Horn.Published 26 days ago by Ken
I am a history buff and this book, although written in the 1980's on a subject I do not usually read a great deal about (the Old West), left me bewildered and speechless. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Very interisting and informative read. If you are trully interested in understanding Custer then purchase this book. It will not disappoint..Published 2 months ago by Stony Monday