This book pieces together a brutal piece of history and unravels an ugly murder mystery. It’s disturbing, depressing and, at least for me, not at all the fast moving read I was led to believe from some of the early reviews. Maybe it’s just me, but I had a difficult time sticking with it. There were so many people involved and random details tossed in that didn’t seem to move things along that to me it seemed a little too over-stuffed and hard to follow at times. Perhaps it should’ve been a little longer? I don’t know. I tried it first in its Kindle version which includes photos of the people involved and then I moved on to the audiobook when I found myself putting it down and not wanting to pick it back up again. The audiobook is read by three narrators and one of them, Will Patton, is one of my favorites so that definitely helped. Something about his voice just pulls you in and forces you to pay attention.
This is a story about those in power who systematically attempt to eradicate an entire tribe of Indians in order to nab their wealth. First they remove them from their homeland and stick them on an unwanted patch of land (which turns out to be worth a fortune later when oil is struck), then they take their buffalo away making them dependent on the government’s money and then after the tribe has accumulated millions because they were far savvier than anyone assumed, the murdering begins. It is a terrible, awful story and it makes me heartsick that there was no justice and that these people were treated as if they were stupid children – or worse. I wasn’t expecting hearts and rainbows but I was hoping someone, somewhere would pay for all of the atrocities committed but no, the greedy and the powerful get away with murder. It’s sickening.
Do I recommend it? Yes, I do. It’s an important book and appalling true story that needed to be documented. We all need to know about the evil that was done to the Osage Tribe and I am not sorry I read/listened to it but I can’t honestly say I would ever read it again.
Previous reading notes:
I'm putting this one on hold for a bit. I've been really struggling to get through it and am instead going to continue to wait for my number to come up for the audio version via Overdrive and read it that way. It's dense with information and history and I feel I'll absorb it better that way. My brain is too tired to read this at night after a never ending day.
UPDATE: My number has come up and this is read by Will freaking Patton! Yes, this was most definitely a good decision on my part.
Starting over with the audio today. I'm kind of glad I have both as I can read along with the Kindle and look at the pictures smattered about while listening to Will Patton's voice. I feel so spoiled ;)