Dovetails in Tall Grass

A Novel

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Pub Date 24 Aug 2021 | Archive Date 09 Sep 2021

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As war overtakes the frontier, Emma’s family farmstead is attacked by Dakota-Sioux warriors; on that same prairie, Oenikika desperately tries to hold on to her calling as a healer and follow the orders of her father, Chief Little Crow. When the war is over and revenge-fueled war trials begin, each young woman is faced with an impossible choice. In a swiftly changing world, both Emma and Oenikika must look deep within and fight for the truth of their convictions—even as horror and injustice unfolds all around them.

Inspired by the true story of the thirty-eight Dakota-Sioux men hanged in Minnesota in 1862—the largest mass execution in US history—Dovetails in Tall Grass is a powerful tale of two young women connected by the fate of one man.

As war overtakes the frontier, Emma’s family farmstead is attacked by Dakota-Sioux warriors; on that same prairie, Oenikika desperately tries to hold on to her calling as a healer and follow the...

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ISBN 9781684630936
PRICE $16.95 (USD)

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Featured Reviews

Many thanks to Author Samantha Specks, to Spark Press publishing and to NetGalley for the opportunity to read this ARC giveaway. This is my honest review.

The complex relationship between the Dakota who have recently been forced into a reservation, and the white settlers of the prairie unfolds through the eyes of Oenikika and Emma Heard, two young women in Minnesota in the 1860's.
War breaks out as the Dakota must face winter without their promised annuity. With very restricted hunting and gathering grounds and with no means of buying food they are literally starving.
This war impacts both Emma and Oenikika and confronts them with conflicting moral values and difficult decisions.
Oenikika and Emma lead completely different lives, yet they are so alike. Each one of them struggles with a strong sense of duty and each one of them makes her own journey to find her unique and true voice.

This novel is so well written and so interesting, I had a hard time putting it down.
I will definitely be looking out for Ms. Specks' next novel!

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I didn't know this was based on a true story going into this, and was horrified when I learned that fact. But this book was an excellent read and a superb portrayal of the relations between settlers and Indians from two different perspectives, yet aren't people just people? We all want the same thing.
The characters were well done, and I raced through this book.

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This book was inspired by the true story of the thirty-eight Dakota-Sioux men hanged in Minnesota in 1862. It follows two women; one white woman who's town is attacked Dakota-Sioux warriors, and one Dakota-Sioux whose tribe has been forced onto a reservation under false promises from the white men which have led them to starve to death. Both females are connected by the fate of one man.

This book is POWERFUL. The females leads had many trials where they had to decide between survival and family loyalty. So much injustice in this story, but it's truly beautiful how the we got to see both sides of this. There is a lot of American history that is glossed over in school, and bringing light to this time in history is so important so we do not forget.

Thank you Spark Press for the gifted copy in exchange for an honest review. Pub Date: August 24.

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What a tremendous story this is. I felt saddened on each page at the injustice of what occurred. There is a mix of fact and fiction, and on the final pages, a list of characters mentioned from history and fictional ones that make it heartbreakingly real. Each reflects the time. It is hard to believe that this is the author’s first outing, as there is passion on each page.

The story follows two young women, one a teenage girl, who has just finished school and lives with her family as settlers in Minnesota, the other the Indian Chief’s daughter, another teenage girl. From the start of the story you know that the ending is a tragedy, but from the pages between you know it could have been much worse.

As more settlers are dangled carrots to travel west and become homesteaders, the Dakota -Sioux Indians are driven further off their lands. Huge sums of money and a promise of a better life are offered if they will move. If only promises would have been kept what happened would not have been a massive loss of lives on both sides.

As the story is told through the lives of the girls, it is more the figures of how many are lost rather than the actual fighting that they hear about. Both girls are exceptional and just. One wants to continue the traditions she has learned while the other seeks justice. Both are strong women. I enjoyed the story coming from them and how each family reacted. Each of the women’s futures is centred around the same man. Another stand out character.

It is a time in history that is not to be proud of, but one that should never be forgotten. Super writing, Recommended reading.

I wish to thank the publisher and Net Galley for a copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.

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