Monday, May 6, 2013

Stolen by a Comanche? Dear Reader: It really happened! STEAL ME AWAY out tomorrow at EC!

Out tomorrow from EC:
did happen! Yes, Anglo women were stolen by the Comanche in south Texas, taken as brides and many decided to stay with their husbands.
     In STEAL ME AWAY, my first historical background to my contemporary KNIGHTS IN BLACK LEATHER series, Francine Turner tells the story of her abduction, her "marriage" and her life with the Comanche chief, Patuwa kum, or as he was known to the Anglos, Bull Elk.
     Fancy is the youngest of three sisters who live in the Texas Hill Country in 1860s. The Texans are devastated by the loss of so many of their men during the Civil War. The Texas regiment of General John Hood fought valiantly as many of the battles such as Antietam, Gettysburg and Chickamauga, but thousands were wounded and died.
     With so many men her age dead, Fancy, as her family called her, had few hopes of marrying, save for the two MacRae brothers who lived south in San Antonio. But she had met Bull Elk at many of the powwows that the Comanche and Anglos had together—and she was attracted to him.
    What you read in STEAL ME AWAY is very accurate. I did quite a bit of research, thanks to my husband who helped me find the best references.
But here are a few non-fiction books you may enjoy reading about real-life abductions.

A discussion of Cynthia Parker who was taken from her family in the Hill Country, tells how she decided to stay with her Indian husband and bore him a son who become one of the most famous cooperative chieftains of the Comanche nation. This book parallels the facts with the famous movie, The Searchers, starring John Wayne. (Do watch that movie!)

And one of my favorite non-fiction books about those stolen by the Comanche is THE CAPTURED by Scott Zesch, a former resident of the Hill Country and a descendant of one of those taken by the Indians. I met him years ago when he signed the book locally and I heartily recommend this for anyone who wants to understand the challenges of settling the American western plains.

If you are inclined to read fiction to learn history, I recommend NOT BETWEEN BROTHERS by David Marion Wilkinson and of course, LONESOME DOVE by Larry McMurtry.

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