A Novel by Lorin Lee Cary
Bloomington: AuthorHouse, 2009
Available as an e-book ($7.95), paperback ($13.95) or hardcover ($22.95)
I do not normally enjoy historic fiction, but I did enjoy this book. Rather than try to portray Custer in some “pretend” scenario, full of over-contrived descriptions of him, this book takes a quick glimpse of Custer through the journal of an unidentified member of his inner circle and runs with a modern story of whodunit and charm.
The story begins in Hardin with an Indian who has the journal. He sends it to his college student niece, Sally Wolf, in hopes she can discover its apparent value. The protagonist, Walter Reeves, is the niece’s history professor who has inner conflicts concerning his marriage and his career. Walter gets the necessary remedy for the boredom in his life as he finds himself entwined in a journey involving burglary, kidnapping, and murder. Along the way are a militia group, determined to protect Custer’s reputation, and radical Indians, all trying to get their hands on the journal.
The author, Lorin Lee Cary, is a retired history professor who has taken his knowledge and humor on a fun ride. Die-hard Custer fans will find some minor faults, but the book is a good read. It may be a good peripheral introduction to the Custer story for their less-enthused family and friends this Christmas.