Title: Our Hearts Fell to the Ground
Genre: NonFiction, History
First Published: 1996
Where I Got It: My Shelf (Amazon)
"This unique anthology chronicles the Plains Indians' struggle to maintain their traditional way of life in the changing world of the nineteenth century. Its rich variety of 34 primary sources - including narratives, myths, speeches, and transcribed oral histories - gives students the rare opportunity to view the transformation of the West from Native American perspective. Calloway's comprehensive introduction offers crucial information on western expansion, territorial struggles among Indian tribes, the slaughter of the buffalo, and forced assimilation through the reservation system. More than 30 pieces of Plains Indian art are included, along with maps, headnotes, questions for consideration, a bibliography, a chronology, and an index."
I was a little disappointed when I opened the book due to the fact that it wasn't what I expected. When I was reading it, I felt like I was reading a college textbook. I felt like after I was done reading it, I would have to type up a report or do a test. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind education books, but I guess I was expecting something else entirely! I was expecting more of a story, but it was a collection of small stories, historical facts, and etc.
It's a small book, but it took me a while to read; I had to force myself to read it at some points. Other than that, the book was great! Colin Calloway did a wonderful job collecting all this information and personal stories to create one book about how the West was lost. I especially loved all the tales from real life people who lived through it. I found it interesting to see the world from their eyes. He even referred to James Welch's novel Fools Crow! I was excited and marked the page, because I love that book! As you may recall, I read and made a review for that novel. Click HERE to see my review.
I especially loved how Colin Calloway ends the book on a sort of happy note. Instead of leaving the reader upset and angry on how America treated its Natives, he leaves you with a hopeful set of mind. Throughout the book he wasn't pointing fingers or accusing the 'Whites' for being cruel, he just gives the facts and that's that. I learned SO much about the Western Natives because of this book.
All-in-all, I did like this book. It was very informational and a nice change. Even though I was upset that it reminded me of college, I couldn't help but find it interesting. If I do have to write a paper about Western Natives, I will turn to this book for aid. If you have to write a report about the West, check this book out too. Well, out of five stars I grant this one 4 stars. I do recommend this book to those that want a change in their reading or if they have any interest in American history.
~~*I did say that I would list my favorite and not-so-favorite characters, but this didn't really have any "characters" in it. So, I'm just going to begin with my next book/movie review.*~~
PS- Oooh! With this completed reading and review, I finally finished a reading challenge! Yayy! I feel like I actually accomplished something. ^.^