Published by One Sky Press Genres: Historical Fiction, US War Fiction
Format: AudioBook, Kindle, Paperback
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Beneath the Same Stars: A Novel of the 1862 U.S.-Dakota War by Phyllis Cole-Dai
August 18, 1862. On the Sioux reservation in southwestern Minnesota, Indians desperate for food and freedom rise up against whites in the region. Sarah Wakefield, the wife of a physician, is taken captive with her two babies. Their fate falls into the hands of the warrior Caske, with whom she has slim acquaintance. As war rages, little does she know how entwined their lives will become.
Beneath the Same Stars is the gripping story of two people, caught between worlds, who are willing to do almost anything to defend those they care about—including each other. But the drama is bigger than themselves. Tragic forces have been set in motion.…
Inspired by actual events surrounding the U.S.-Dakota War.
Beneath the Same Stars by Phyllis Cole-Dai is a historical fiction masterpiece. A remarkable must-read novel which readers will love, thoroughly enjoy and never forget.
‘Lest we forget’ is a mantra repeated in the UK to remind us of the soldiers who died during the two World Wars. These few poignant words capture the essence of Phyllis Cole-Dai’s moving and heartbreaking fictional account of the life of Sarah Wakefield and her experiences during the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862.
I appreciate so much the meticulous research that has clearly gone into the creating of this wonderful story. With flawless editing and a smooth steady pace, this account of a particularly harrowing piece of American history is told with poise and eloquence.
Good Big Woman is the name given to Sarah by the Sioux, a name to be proud of. Married to Doctor John Wakefield and the mother of two children (Nellie and James), Sarah is a woman whose life has not been easy. Going to live among the Sioux on their reservation is just another hardship she must endure. She does so with grit and determination, finding joy where she can, as in smoking and talking with the Sioux women trying to learn their language.
Having made a home for her family in a place of unrest, Sarah watches in horror as her husband falls apart, drinking too much and disrespecting the Sioux people. Her attempt to point him towards wisdom leaves her battered and rejected. Put on a wagon, supposedly to get to safety, Sarah and her children find themselves right in the middle of the uprising. The next six weeks become like a lifetime to Sarah as time and time again their lives are threatened. Her saviors are Ćaske and his endearing mother, Uŋćiśi, who repeatedly move Sarah and the children to safety. I felt that Sarah received more love and caring in those six weeks than she had in her entire life. I wanted her to remain in Ćaske’s strong arms forever, because for once in her life she had met a man who was honorable through and through.
This isn’t a fairy tale book; it is a book so real it will move you to tears. With memorable well-developed characters, a full, deep and moving plot, and a remarkable expressive writing style, Phyllis Cole-Dai has written a story which will touch, captivate and compel readers from start to finish.
This novel deserves to win awards. Beneath the Same Stars by Phyllis Cole-Dai is highly recommended by Chick Lit Café to all historical fiction readers. With much to discuss and reflect on, this novel should also be part of every college curriculum. 5 BIG STARS
Reviewed by TN Traynor for Chick Lit Café