Ghost Riders is yet another
addition to Sharyn McCrumb's Ballad of the Appalachia series. I
am a devoted fan that started out reading her mysteries and then
discovered that she wrote many books that take place quite close
Riders Ms. McCrumb approaches the story in several ways, but
they eventually come together in the end. The main story is about
a young mountain couple living in the shadows of Grandfather Mountain.
The great Civil war is on and mountain people are split on their
loyalties. To them, the war was a rich man's fight over slavery
and money, of which these poor people have neither.
who honored the union had raised Keith Blalock. His plan was to
join the Confederates until they got close to the Union army and
slip to the other side. He was not counting on his young bride Malinda
following him. She cut her hair, dressed as a boy and joined also.
second story being told involves Zeb Vance. Zeb was a poor mountain
lad who became a lawyer, then a colonel and later would serve as
North Carolina's governor. He is the commander over Keith and Malinda,
now known as Sam, Keith's little brother.
fakes an injury, and is sent home. Malinda confesses her gender
and is sent with him. Soon the war is worsening and Keith and Malinda
become Union sympathizers leading people over into Tennessee.
running through this story is a group of Civil War re-enactors,
a mountain man that has Cherokee blood and the sight (or the ability
to see things most people don't- the supernatural) and of course
Nora Bonesteel and Sheriff Spencer Arrowood.
book often read like a history lesson, but one I could not get enough
of. I am not a Civil War buff but I learned a great deal about the
war and how it affected the area close to where I was born, raised
and still live. Sharyn McCrumb is the master when it comes to making
this history come alive.