Many Sparrows by Lori Benton – a review

Early American History, Shawnee

Many Sparrows is an Early American History novel written by Lori Benton. It takes me back to twenty years ago when, as a teen, I was fascinated with my Native American ancestry. It all began with having watched the movie The Last of the Mohicans in high school. What spawned was a deep interest in learning about the different tribes of Native Americans. I next read the novels The Last of the Mohicans and Follow the River, and my love for these stories runs deep.

When I received the opportunity to review Many Sparrows, a story written about the people along the Ohio River where I hail, I knew I had to read it!

Introduction

Upon reading the description on the back of the book, I had a feeling that I’d be stepping back in time. Knowing the area in which Many Sparrows takes place like the back of my hand, I couldn’t wait to read. And true to my suspicion, Lori Benton took me back to a place where I could see the trees, feel the grass around my legs, and smell the earth of the area. I know this area. I grew up there. I’ve often wondered over the years what it must have been like to traipse the woods in the 1770s when early Americans were settling. Growing up, I’d often found arrowheads on my grandparent’s property, just north of the Ohio River. Many times I’ve imagined the struggle of the Natives, fighting so strongly to hold on to their lands that they loved so dearly. . . .

Many Sparrows allowed me to teleport back to that time and place. It is a beautifully captivating story that will grab you by the collar and pull you in.

Clare Inglesby, due to give birth within the next few weeks, is left alone on a remote mountain trail with her son Jacob while her husband Philip goes off to seek help after a wagon accident. Clare finds herself in a precarious situation when her husband Philip disappears, followed shortly by her son Jacob, and the baby decides it’s time to be born.Woodsmall pin1

As a messenger between the Native Americans and the American settlers, frontiersman Jeremiah Ring feels it is his job to help the two parties stay at peace. His heart broken and faith tested by matters that happened in the past, Jeremiah has learned to trust in the Lord without wavering. When he finds Clare, preparing to give birth, he never expected to have to help deliver the woman’s child. Most assuredly, he certainly hadn’t expected to have to change his plans and go in search of her son Jacob.

Initial Thoughts

I’m always impressed with a novel that draws me in from the start. Many Sparrows did that. Beginning with the Inglesby tale, Lori set up the stage. She described each of the Inglesby characters, their physical descriptions and their character traits.

The story developed rapidly and the plot twists and turns in a manner that felt effortless and natural. Beautiful writing, well-developed storyline, Many Sparrows drew me in quickly and gripped me by the heart.

The characters in the story felt very real. Lori did a wonderful job capturing the fear and determination on the parts of the settlers and the Natives. The building tension was palpable between the two peoples.

Final Thoughts

Have you ever read a book that has compelled you and captured you so much that you feel changed? Many Sparrows has done that for me. This has been a novel that has found its way into my heart and will forever hold a proud place on my bookcase.

I very much recommend this novel for anyone who loves American history, especially early American history and Appalachian history. I believe that you will thoroughly enjoy this novel.

Want to read more about the history revolved around this novel? Try these links:

http://www.ohiohistorycentral.org/w/Logan

http://www.ohiohistorycentral.org/w/Lord_Dunmore%27s_War_and_the_Battle_of_Point_Pleasant

http://www.ohiohistorycentral.org/w/Shawnee_Indians

About the author:

Lori Benton was raised east of the Appalachian Mountains, surrounded by early American history going back three hundred years. Her novels transport readers to the eighteenth century, where she brings to life the Colonial and early Federal periods of American history. When she isn’t writing, reading, or researching, Lori enjoys exploring and photographing the Oregon wilderness with her husband. She is the author of “Burning Sky,” recipient of three Christy Awards, “The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn,” Christy-nominee “The Wood’s Edge,” and “A Flight of Arrows.”
Find out more about Lori at http://loribenton.blogspot.com.

Also find Lori here:
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I must say that Many Sparrows is most assuredly . . .

Many thanks to Litfuse and Waterbrook Publishers!