100 books like Autumn of the Black Snake

By William Hogeland,

Here are 100 books that Autumn of the Black Snake fans have personally recommended if you like Autumn of the Black Snake. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American History

Michelle Bennington Author Of Widow's Blush: A Widows & Shadows Mystery

From my list on traveling back in time.

Who am I?

I was an English major in college. In pursuing my love of books and language, I fell into a love of history. The passion for history began with author biographies as I tried to understand how the culture affected various authors’ writings. This is why my history strength resides in European history, because most of my favorite authors come from Europe. The more I read of the biographies, I often came across historical events I wasn’t knowledgeable about and so fell down a rabbit hole of historical research. The more I learn, the more I love history! 

Michelle's book list on traveling back in time

Michelle Bennington Why did Michelle love this book?

I cannot speak highly enough of Gwynne’s book! This book is only a few hundred pages, but he somehow manages to detail the very complex relationships between Texas, Mexico, the United States government, and the Comanche Indians while making a believable case for the Comanche being an empire in its own right.

While I’m a big history nerd, I tend to focus on European history. But lately, I’ve come to have a deeper appreciation for U.S. history. It certainly gave me a broader understanding of the Wild West, indigenous people, and the socio-political atmosphere.

The best part is that it wasn’t dry and boring, as some history books can be. It read like a novel. As a writer myself, I’m still amazed at how he managed to pack so much information inside the covers. Not a single word was wasted. That’s an impressive feat!

By S.C. Gwynne,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Empire of the Summer Moon as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the tradition of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, a stunningly vivid historical account of the forty-year battle between Comanche Indians and white settlers for control of the American West, centering on Quanah, the greatest Comanche chief of them all.

S. C. Gwynne’s Empire of the Summer Moonspans two astonishing stories. The first traces the rise and fall of the Comanches, the most powerful Indian tribe in American history. The second entails one of the most remarkable narratives ever to come out of the Old West: the epic saga of the pioneer woman Cynthia Ann Parker and her mixed-blood…


Book cover of A Terrible Glory: Custer and the Little Bighorn - The Last Great Battle of the American West

James Mueller Author Of Ambitious Honor: George Armstrong Custer's Life of Service and Lust for Fame

From my list on George A. Custer and the Little Bighorn.

Who am I?

As a journalist, the Little Bighorn fascinates me because it has all the elements of a great story: larger-than-life characters, conflict, fighting against the odds, and mystery. I turned that fascination into research when I left newspapering to pursue a Ph.D. at the University of Texas. I wrote a number of articles about press coverage of Custer and the Last Stand, and this research eventually led to two books, most recently a biography of Custer focusing on his artistic personality, especially his writing career. I’ve continued to explore the history of war reporting, always looking for topics that make good stories.

James' book list on George A. Custer and the Little Bighorn

James Mueller Why did James love this book?

James Donovan combined impeccable research with an engaging style to produce the best book about the Battle of the Little Bighorn. The battle is the subject of more books than just about any other fight in American history, but Donovan’s has set a new standard. I referred to the book regularly while writing my biography of Custer. You can’t really begin to understand a complex battle like the Little Bighorn without a seasoned guide. But Donovan doesn’t just explain the battle. He writes in a way that gives his book the feel of a novel rather than a dry recitation of facts. A Terrible Glory will take you on an exciting ride and teach you everything you need to know about Custer’s Last Stand.

By James Donovan,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked A Terrible Glory as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In June of 1876, on a hill above a river called the Little Bighorn, George Armstrong Custer and all 210 men under his direct command were annihilated by 2,000 Sioux and Cheyenne. The news of this stunning defeat caused an uproar, and those involved promptly began to point fingers in order to avoid responsibility. Custer, who was conveniently dead, took the brunt of the blame. The truth, however was far more complex. A TERRIBLE GLORY is the first book to tell the entire story of this fascinating battle, and the first to call upon new findings of the last 25…


Book cover of On the Border with Crook

Peter Cozzens Author Of Tecumseh and the Prophet: The Shawnee Brothers Who Defied a Nation

From my list on the American Indian Wars.

Who am I?

I am a retired Foreign Service Officer with the U. S. Department of State and, more to the point for the purpose of the topic at hand, the author or editor of eighteen books on the Indian Wars and the Civil War. Among them is the bestselling, multiple award-winning The Earth is Weeping: The Indian Wars for the American West.

Peter's book list on the American Indian Wars

Peter Cozzens Why did Peter love this book?

Drawn from a 128-volume diary that Capt. John G. Bourke during his long service in the American West, On the Border with Crook is the finest first-person account of the Indian Wars for the American West written by an army participant. A highly literate and dispassionate observer, Bourke served as aide to General George Crook, himself a towering figure in the conflicts. Like his commander, Bourke was sympathetic to the native peoples and their plight. Bourke’s service took him from the desert Southwest to the Northern Plains, giving his recollections an inclusiveness that no other offers.

By John G. Bourke,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked On the Border with Crook as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From 1870 until 1886 Captain John O. Bourke served on the staff of General George Crook, who Sherman described as the greatest Indian fighter the army ever had, a man whose prowess was demon-strated "from British America to Mexico, from the Missouri River to the Pacific Ocean." But On the Border with Crook is far more than a first-hand account of Crook's campaigns during the Plains Indian wars and in the Southwest. Alert, curious, and perceptive, Bourke brings to life the whole frontier scene. In crisp descriptions and telling anecdotes he recreates the events and landscapes through which he moved;…


Book cover of The Lance and the Shield: The Life and Times of Sitting Bull

Peter Cozzens Author Of Tecumseh and the Prophet: The Shawnee Brothers Who Defied a Nation

From my list on the American Indian Wars.

Who am I?

I am a retired Foreign Service Officer with the U. S. Department of State and, more to the point for the purpose of the topic at hand, the author or editor of eighteen books on the Indian Wars and the Civil War. Among them is the bestselling, multiple award-winning The Earth is Weeping: The Indian Wars for the American West.

Peter's book list on the American Indian Wars

Peter Cozzens Why did Peter love this book?

The Lance and the Shield is a model biography of a native leader; in this case, one of the most storied figures in American Indian history. Utley immerses the reader in Lakota (Sioux) culture and evokes all the pathos of the enigmatic Sitting Bull’s struggle to preserve the Plains Indian way of life. Utley is the dean of Western Historians, and all his books are well worth reading.

By Robert M. Utley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Lance and the Shield as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Chronicles the life of the famous warrior, Sitting Bull, correcting many common misconceptions about the legendary native American. By the author of The Last Days of the Sioux. 35,000 first printing. $35,000 ad/promo. History Bk Club Main. BOMC. QPB.


Book cover of Jefferson and the Indians: The Tragic Fate of the First Americans

William Heath Author Of William Wells and the Struggle for the Old Northwest

From my list on the Great Lakes/Ohio Valley Frontier.

Who am I?

William Heath has a Ph.D. in American Studies at Case Western Reserve University. He has taught American history and literature as well as creative writing at Kenyon, Transylvania, Vassar, the University of Seville, and Mount Saint Mary’s University, retiring as a professor emeritus. He has published two poetry books, The Walking Man and Steel Valley Elegy; two chapbooks, Night Moves in Ohio and Leaving Seville; three novels: The Children Bob Moses Led (winner of the Hackney Award), Devil Dancer, and Blacksnake’s Path; a work of history, William Wells and the Struggle for the Old Northwest (winner of two Spur Awards); and a collection of interviews, Conversations with Robert Stone

William's book list on the Great Lakes/Ohio Valley Frontier

William Heath Why did William love this book?

What Calloway does for Washington, Wallace does for Jefferson. Even more than Washington, Jefferson talked one game and played another. He could be splendidly eloquent on how much he wanted the Indian nations to become Americans, yet that could only happen, in Jefferson’s mind, if they surrendered their identity as Indians. If anything, the situation was even worse than Wallace suggests, as I point out in detail in my book on William Wells. While there is much to admire about Jefferson, his Indian policy shows how idealism can serve as a front for blatant exploitation and near genocide.  

By Anthony F. C. Wallace,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Jefferson and the Indians as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In Thomas Jefferson's time, white Americans were bedeviled by a moral dilemma unyielding to reason and sentiment: what to do about the presence of black slaves and free Indians. That Jefferson himself was caught between his own soaring rhetoric and private behavior toward blacks has long been known. But the tortured duality of his attitude toward Indians is only now being unearthed.

In this landmark history, Anthony Wallace takes us on a tour of discovery to unexplored regions of Jefferson's mind. There, the bookish Enlightenment scholar--collector of Indian vocabularies, excavator of ancient burial mounds, chronicler of the eloquence of America's…


Book cover of Indigenous Memory, Urban Reality: Stories of American Indian Relocation and Reclamation

Coll Thrush Author Of Indigenous London: Native Travelers at the Heart of Empire

From my list on urban Indigenous lives.

Who am I?

I came to Indigenous history through the experience as a settler growing up at the edge of a reservation. I also love cities as “texts,” and the ways in which urban places never fully erase what came before. These two interests led me to urban Indigenous studies. Urban and Indigenous histories are often treated as though they are mutually exclusive, when in fact they are deeply entangled with each other: for example, the majority of Indigenous people in the United States live in urban areas. These works capture the rich history of migration, political organizing, and cultural production that has taken place in Indigenous cities.

Coll's book list on urban Indigenous lives

Coll Thrush Why did Coll love this book?

Rather than focusing on historical archives, this book is based on years of face-to-face research in and with urban Indigenous communities. Deftly describing the urban politics of identity, Jacobs provides insights into the ways in which Indigenous people manage senses of self and community in the twenty-first-century city.

By Michelle R. Jacobs,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Indigenous Memory, Urban Reality as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Contemporary accounts of urban Native identity in two pan-Indian communities
In the last half century, changing racial and cultural dynamics in the United States have caused an explosion in the number of people claiming to be American Indian, from just over half a million in 1960 to over three million in 2013. Additionally, seven out of ten American Indians live in or near cities, rather than in tribal communities, and that number is growing.
In Indigenous Memory, Urban Reality, Michelle Jacobs examines the new reality of the American Indian urban experience. Drawing on ethnographic research conducted over two and a…


Book cover of An Archaeology of the Sacred: Adena-Hopewell Astronomy and Landscape Archaeology

Giulio Magli Author Of Archaeoastronomy: Introduction to the Science of Stars and Stones

From my list on archaeoastronomy.

Who am I?

I started my scientific career as an Astrophysicist. However, I have always been interested in Archaeology. This finally led me to conjugate the two passions when I started working in Archaeoastronomy, in 2003. Working in Archaeoastronomy first means having a direct experience of the sites (preferably, of every single stone, although in places like Giza they count in the millions…). So I have made fieldworks in Italy, Egypt, Cambodia, and, recently, on Chinese imperial necropolises. I currently teach Archaeoastronomy as a professor at the Politecnico of Milan. I have always been interested also in scientific communication on TV and social media, and my introductive Archaeoastronomy course is available for free on the Coursera platform.

Giulio's book list on archaeoastronomy

Giulio Magli Why did Giulio love this book?

Two thousand years ago, Native Americans created thousands of mounds and geometrically shaped earthworks across the Eastern Woodlands. In many cases, these structures are connected with the celestial cycles. This book presents a comprehensive study of the Ohio sites, framing them into Adena-Hopewell's religious beliefs and practices and showing how, for these ancient people, the entire landscape – including the sky – was a sacred space.

By William F. Romain,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked An Archaeology of the Sacred as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Two thousand years ago, Native Americans created thousands of mounds and geometrically shaped earthworks across the Eastern Woodlands. Many are larger than Stonehenge; most are aligned to celestial events. Among the most impressive of these earthworks were those created by people of the Adena and Hopewell cultures in south and central Ohio. This book presents one of the most comprehensive and detailed studies of the Ohio earthworks ever written. More than one hundred sites are documented using on-site photographs, maps, and LiDAR imagery. Using these data the author assesses each earthwork relative to its astronomy, geometry, mensuration, and landscape setting.…


Book cover of The Middle Ground: Indians, Empires, and Republics in the Great Lakes Region, 1650-1815

William Heath Author Of William Wells and the Struggle for the Old Northwest

From my list on the Great Lakes/Ohio Valley Frontier.

Who am I?

William Heath has a Ph.D. in American Studies at Case Western Reserve University. He has taught American history and literature as well as creative writing at Kenyon, Transylvania, Vassar, the University of Seville, and Mount Saint Mary’s University, retiring as a professor emeritus. He has published two poetry books, The Walking Man and Steel Valley Elegy; two chapbooks, Night Moves in Ohio and Leaving Seville; three novels: The Children Bob Moses Led (winner of the Hackney Award), Devil Dancer, and Blacksnake’s Path; a work of history, William Wells and the Struggle for the Old Northwest (winner of two Spur Awards); and a collection of interviews, Conversations with Robert Stone

William's book list on the Great Lakes/Ohio Valley Frontier

William Heath Why did William love this book?

The Middle Ground is by far the best overview of the Great Lakes frontier over a period of almost two hundred years. White traces how French fur traders were able to establish a fluctuating “middle ground” with the Indian nations of the region that allowed for a degree of respect, understanding, and intermarriage. When the French were succeeded by the British, this middle ground began to shrink, as English traders wanted to let the cash nexus determine their business practices. When the Americans came to dominate the situation, the middle ground, with the exception of a few figures like William Wells, almost entirely disappeared. The result was devastating for the Indian nations, whose cultures nearly disappeared. White’s thesis has been challenged by Alan Taylor and other historians of the period, but the book remains an essential classic.  

By Richard White,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Middle Ground as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An acclaimed book and widely acknowledged classic, The Middle Ground steps outside the simple stories of Indian-white relations - stories of conquest and assimilation and stories of cultural persistence. It is, instead, about a search for accommodation and common meaning. It tells how Europeans and Indians met, regarding each other as alien, as other, as virtually nonhuman, and how between 1650 and 1815 they constructed a common, mutually comprehensible world in the region around the Great Lakes that the French called pays d'en haut. Here the older worlds of the Algonquians and of various Europeans overlapped, and their mixture created…


Book cover of Whereabouts Unknown

Sharon Michalove Author Of Dead in the Alley

From my list on mysteries to give you that Great Lakes feeling.

Who am I?

As a Chicago native, the Great Lakes area is part of my identity. My family spent summers in Michigan and, one year even went up to Sault St. Marie on the border between Michigan and Canada to spend a week on Lake Superior. A knitting retreat in Petosky was another Michigan adventure I enjoyed. The idea of writing about Northern Michigan turned out to be a fascinating exploration of an area I barely knew. And I’ve been able to meet other writers from there and enjoy their varied mysteries set in the region. From Minnesota to Ohio, I hope you enjoy the many faces of the Great Lakes.

Sharon's book list on mysteries to give you that Great Lakes feeling

Sharon Michalove Why did Sharon love this book?

Another Great Lakes writer, Meredith Doench is an Ohio native who teaches in the English Department at the University of Dayton. Meredith, another member of my writing group, is the author of the Luce Hansen series, Whereabouts Unknown is a standalone introducing Office Theodora Madsen of the Dayton P.D.

Theo is investigating the case of two missing teenage girls, who vanish, each leaving behind a bloody handprint. When Theo is injured and faces a lengthy recovery, the case goes cold while Theo tries to piece together the connection between the two girls before time runs out.

By Meredith Doench,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Whereabouts Unknown as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Theodora Madsen has everything she’s ever hoped for: a distinguished career as a homicide detective with the Dayton Police Department, a woman she loves, and a baby on the way.

While Theo and Bree nest and plan for their family’s future, two sixteen-year-old Ohio girls vanish—one from Dayton and the other from Brecksville—each leaving behind a bloody handprint. Then a routine interview goes disastrously wrong, and Theo’s injured and facing a lengthy recovery.

With her professional future uncertain and the cases growing cold, Theo scrambles to piece together the links between the girls. But the clock is ticking and time…


Book cover of The Bluest Eye

Stephane Dunn Author Of Snitchers

From my list on Black girl coming of age everybody should read.

Who am I?

I was a book-loving Black Girl and am now a Black woman, professor-writer, and lifelong books and popular culture junkie. As a young reader, I marveled at the storytelling in books that took us into the diverse lives and deep interior of teen girls - from Are You There God It’s Me Margaret to especially ones like the five books I name which place Black girls and women at the center of the narrative. In most of the films and writings that I teach and my own book Snitchers, there’s some tragedy and pain, some blues, and perspectives that add to the truth and richness of our human and American story. 

Stephane's book list on Black girl coming of age everybody should read

Stephane Dunn Why did Stephane love this book?

Unfortunately, Toni Morrison’s first major novel The Bluest Eye has long been targeted on banned book lists, which is unfortunate.

Told through the narration of Claudia - a Black girl character after my own heart with the same on-point, justifiably defiant thinking I had as a young girl, we get the story of Pecola and a community that is shaped by both the history of white supremacy and it’s own cultural richness and texture.

Morrison’s writing is so visual and visceral, and the storytelling so honest it spoke to my own war against Black girl invisibility in my own world. I’ve read it many times, and it still emotionally shakes me as so much memorable writing and stories tend to do.

And like other books by this Nobel Prize winner author, The Bluest Eye should be required reading for advanced grade high school students rather than banned. 

By Toni Morrison,

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked The Bluest Eye as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Read the searing first novel from the celebrated author of Beloved, which immerses us in the tragic, torn lives of a poor black family in post-Depression 1940s Ohio.

Unlovely and unloved, Pecola prays each night for blue eyes like those of her privileged white schoolfellows. At once intimate and expansive, unsparing in its truth-telling, The Bluest Eye shows how the past savagely defines the present. A powerful examination of our obsession with beauty and conformity, Toni Morrison's virtuosic first novel asks powerful questions about race, class, and gender with the subtlety and grace that have always characterised her writing.

'She…


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