By Michael McLellan
Genre: Historical Fiction
Henry was born into slavery; his young life spent working in tobacco drying sheds on Missouri plantations. Freed at the onset of the Civil War, he’s alone, starving, and on the run from Confederate militiamen.
Five years later, Clara Hanfield, the daughter of a powerful New York shipping magnate, escapes her tyrannical father and travels west in pursuit of John Elliot, the man she loves. John, a U.S. Army lieutenant, was sent to the Dakota Territory where he discovers a government conspiracy to incite an all-out war with the Indians; a war meant to finally eliminate them as an obstacle to the westward expansion.
Henry finds himself caught in the middle.
Aided by Clara, John, and his native ally, Standing Elk, Henry must battle hatred, greed, and the ghosts of his past during this turbulent and troubling time in American history.
In the Shadow of the Hanging Tree is one of the most intense and thrilling novels I have ever read. The writing is graceful and just amazing. The story is full of in-depth detail, created a new level of emotion. At times I felt that I was overwhelmed with all what was going on.
In the Shadow of the Hanging Tree is developed really well. I love all the cultures and races that were brought up in this novel. It's fascinating to me. You don't see those touchy subjects in books nowadays. It's rare. I love that uniqueness to In the Shadow of the Hanging Tree. Mr. McLellan is a very talented and inspirational writer. He has potential and talent to get big. I personally feel that this novel should be read by book lovers because it's just packed and packed with emotion. Overall I give In the the Shadow of the Hanging Tree four stars.
Michael’s love of books began with Beverly Cleary’s The Mouse and the Motorcycle when he was seven-years-old. Later influenced by the works of John Steinbeck, Harper Lee, Stephen King, and Cormac McCarthy, Michael developed his style of storytelling. A self-proclaimed blue-collar writer, he draws on his experiences and observations to bring relevant and compelling topics to life.
Michael lives in Northern California, and when he’s not writing, he can usually be found wandering around the Sierra Nevada and Cascade mountain ranges.
His body of work includes the 2014 novel After and Again, the 2015 novel American Flowers, and the shorts Joe Price and Anywhere But Here.
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