The Historical Novel Society reviews historical novels like John’s first novel, Braver Deeds, for the benefit of its members and the public. Its review of Braver Deeds was posted today. Here’s an excerpt:
From Wounded Knee to San Juan Hill, Braver Deeds tells the story of two young men who come to understand the many colors of courage.
History is full of erasures, of whole populations that are left out of the communal records. Braver Deeds focuses on many of these populations: African Americans, American Indians, immigrants, and even a pair of gay lovers. Rather than distracting from what we can learn from history, these stories drawn from the author’s imagination illumine and reveal so much more about love, honor, and courage. With luminaries such as Teddy Roosevelt, Stephen Crane, and Buffalo Bill Cody, it’s a revelation done with sensitivity, unapologetically, and will enrich the reader’s understanding of our common heritage.