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News of the World by Paulette Jiles

News of the World (2016)

by Paulette Jiles

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7839411,764 (4.27)126

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Read this book earlier in the year. Great read. Very satisfying. ( )
  Alphawoman | Oct 22, 2017 |
This book elegantly and gently tells the story of an aging military man and a ten year old girl, taken at age six and recently released by the Kiowa Indians. The Colonel
undertakes the task of returning the girl to her remaining family through the lawless Texas under Reconstruction after the Civil War.

Complicating matters is that she has lost all apparent memory of her previous life, and is in speech and culture now entirely Kiowan.

Beautifully written, Jiles finds a lightness in dark material. It addresses the profound difficulties in sundered cultural identifications, and speaks to the new human connections that one would hope are still possible.
  stellarexplorer | Oct 14, 2017 |
This was a short but interesting little read. Set in Texas during Reconstruction, a man who travels the land reading news articles at public gatherings, has an orphan girl who was kidnapped by the Kiowa, foisted upon him to return her to her aunt and uncle.

The little girl was taken at age 6 and at age 10 has gone fully native Kiowa. She remembers little English or German (her native tongue) and an aunt and uncle who live south of San Antonio, have commissioned people traveling the road to bring her back.

The news reader is an old man now and he and the girl bond through their travels and travails through the newly opened western territories. Along the way they encounter highwaymen, cowboys, merchants, the military and various townspeople.

Each encounter assists them or hinders them in their goal to get to Castroville, Texas. The little girl turns out to be handy and resourceful and the relationship blossoms along the trails and roads of Texas.

This is not a long book but one I found charming and entertaining. If anything, it may have ended a little abruptly but I encourage readers to pick this one up if the old west and reconstruction era America interest you. ( )
  ozzie65 | Oct 11, 2017 |
I checked this book out of the local library to read. All opinions are my own. News of the World by Paulette Jiles 🌟🌟🌟This book should be a movie because of the decriptive writing. It seems some parts go on and on with descriptions.A man, Captain Kidd, who reads the news from all over the world in small towns across Texas is paid by another to deliver a captive Kiowa child back to her relatives. As the rustic journey gets underway the child speaks no English and has no idea of civilized ways. As Captain Kidd, who is 71, begins to slowly teach the child (Johannah) he becomes emotionally attached and feels responsible for her more so after a battle with locals who attempt to steal the child from him. At which time he begins to understand her ability to adapt and survive. She teaches him how to use dimes in shotgun shells for ammunition. When they finally reach Castroville after a month's journey in a wagon he feels terrible about leaving her with her heartless relatives to live a life in which she can not understand. The family is abusive and after a few nights apart he returns to get her. Her life may not be understood by many but the two of them have a bond that remains unbroken through time. It was a pleasant slow read that has a heartwarming ending and makes you want to smile. Review also posted on Instagram @jasonnstacie, Goodreads/StacieBoren, and my blog https://readsbystacie.com ( )
  SBoren | Oct 10, 2017 |
Grieving for his dead wife, newspaper publisher Jefferson Kyle Kidd leaves their home in San Antonio and heads to the small towns in north Texas to read aloud articles from papers to a population starved for news. It’s the winter of 1870; Texas with the rest of the defeated Confederacy is under military law, and the economy is in a shambles. But it’s worth a dime to hear old Captain Kidd—he’s a veteran of three wars—read aloud from papers from Philadelphia, New York, and even London, and hear about national politics, a census in India, and polar expeditions. The details of things happening in “places far away and mysterious.”

In Wichita Falls, he takes on another commission that is far more risky and strenuous. For a gold Spanish coin worth fifty dollars, he is to take ten-year old Johanna Leonberger to her aunt and uncle near San Antonio, four-hundred miles away. It’s a long, lonely and dangerous voyage, filled with unfriendly Federal troops, hostile Comanche raiding parties, and outlaws. There is an even more profound problem. Blond and freckled Johanna no longer remembers that her name was once Johanna. Captured by the Kiowa six years ago, in a raid that ended in the death of her German parents and sister, the girl’s idea of going home is to her grieving Kiowa mother, not being dragged south to be turned over to strangers. She knows that she is a Kiowa, and now she has been forcibly handed over to these strange people that speak in tongues she cannot understand. She never knew English, and she has forgotten her native German. She speaks Kiowa, and in that language her name is Cicada. Worse, her new captors make her dress in the most uncomfortable clothes possible, and point at her rudely. She hates them.

This is a well-told Western adventure that makes an excellent presentation of the cultural clashes, compromises, and reconciliations among the differing populations involved, as well as the intense psychological strain of returned captives, a fact well documented in Texas history. ( )
  MaowangVater | Oct 10, 2017 |
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For friends on the long trails:
Susan, June, April, Nancy, Caroline, Wanda,
Evelyn, and Rita Wightman Whippet
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Captain Kidd laid out the Boston Morning Journal on the lectern and began to read from the article on the Fifteenth Amendment.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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