Monday, 7 July 2014
Historical fiction unveils the cruel past of the founding of America -
David-Michael Harding’s Losing St. Christopher chronicles Book 2 in the Cherokee Series and follows a family split by vision for the future, but held together by love, as they assimilate into European culture, their betrayal, and escape from the Trail of Tears.
David-Michael Harding weaves his admiration of Native American culture and history in his newest release, Losing St. Christopher. While technically a work of fiction, Harding’s novel builds on a factual base in order to educate readers about a unique period in history when one nation was born and another nearly died.
In 1953 Albert Speer, Germany’s Minister of Armaments & War Production during World War II, wrote from his prison cell in Berlin regarding the genocide of the American Indian. The Nazis’ study of the treatment and eradication of American Indians was an element in the plan for the “Final Solution.” Hitler, Heinrich Himmler, Adolf Eichmann, and others who administered the Nazi Holocaust had looked to the Indian Removal Act of 1830 and the subsequent actions of the United States Government as the blueprint for annihilation of a people, a culture, and a way of life.
In Losing St. Christopher, Totsuhwa, the revered shaman of the Cherokee Nation, struggles against the assimilation of his people into the white world of men he sees as invaders. The colonists, along with Cherokee who are trying to bridge both worlds, see him as a barbarous threat. When Totsuhwa’s visions show him the outcome, it is as black as his deep set haunting eyes. Chancellor, his son, takes a white wife following study at a missionary school and the shaman’s fears seem realized. Conflicts between cultures and within the family erupt when Totsuhwa’s only grandchild is forced onto the Trail of Tears. In the chase that follows, an estranged love fights to stem the ugly flow of racism that is moving in two directions.
With its historical basis and fictional storyline, Losing St. Christopher will educate readers while entertaining them with a story of culture, inner conflict and the evolution of a nation. Harding hopes his novel will create an impact on readers and shed light on a lost, forgotten, and dark page of our history.