“Many Sparrows” by Lori Benton was sort of a companion novel to Ms. Benton’s “The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn”. Two of the characters in this new book are present in the new one.
Claire Inglesby is persuaded by her husband Philip to leave their farm in the Virginia Colony which in 1774 was on the Western Frontier of the America. Claire, heavily pregnant with her second child, is also mothering her first, Jacob. Philip has no clue as how to live in the wilderness and puts his family in danger. The travelers come to a stop when the wagon wheel breaks. Philip decides to leave his wife and child to go for help back the way they came. Between the anxiety of being left alone on the trail and the rigors of the trip, Claire goes into labor. She moves away from the camp sight, leaving Jacob asleep near the wagon.
Jeremiah Ring is a scout and adopted son of the Shawnee, travelling on a mission to the people’s town. He finds the body of Philip back on the trail not too far from the wagon. He has been killed and scalped by renegade Shawnee. He comes across Claire and aids her in birthing her child. When they go to wake up Jacob, they find him missing. Clues show that he was taken by Indians. Claire is determined to find her son, no matter the cost and convinces Jeremiah to take her with him as he travels to the Shawnee camp. They find him, but getting him back is no small task.
This narrative shows just how primitive the “western” frontier is at this time in history. England still rules the colonies and there is unrest among the native tribes at the invasion of the white men. I found this book not only to be highly entertaining, but historically informative. Ms. Benton has written another book that is impossible to put down until the end. I hope that there will be another novel picking up where this one left off. I’d love to see what happened.
I received complimentary print copy of this book from LitFuse Publicity and Waterbrook Publishers in return for my honest review.