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Eclipse: A Novel of Lewis and Clark

by Richard S. Wheeler

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451444,580 (4.2)1
Lewis and Clark: forever paired for their epochal first crossing of the continent in 1804-1806, darlings of the young republic, and the pride of Thomas Jefferson because they made his dream of a nation between two oceans come true.Lewis and Clark: two great but very different men.Plain-spoken William Clark, enjoys the triumphs and acclaim of the expedition, marries his childhood sweetheart, and settles in St. Louis as superintendent of the nation's Indian affairs. His black manservant, York, who accompanied the expedition, forces Clark to confront the very nature of slavery and question the society that condoned it.Meriwether Lewis, a man of fierce courage and brilliant intellect, returns from the Pacific a changed man. Something terrible has happened to him, something insidious, a disease with no name that erodes his health, threatens to destroy his mind - and his honor.In Eclipse, Richard S. Wheeler has written a tour de force novel, an exploration of triumph and tragedy told in the authentically rendered voices of the two greatest American explorers.Moreover, Wheeler provides a solution - dark in its ramifications - to one of the greatest mysteries in American history: the terrible and unexplained death of Meriwether Lewis, age thirty-five, in the wilderness of the Natchez Trace of Tennessee in October, 1809.… (more)
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Lewis and Clark story ( )
  brone | Oct 26, 2010 |
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For my friend and editory Dale L. Walker, eminent historian, Jack London scholar, biographer, critic, journalist, teacher, and bookman
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I knew myself to be the most luminous man on earth.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Lewis and Clark: forever paired for their epochal first crossing of the continent in 1804-1806, darlings of the young republic, and the pride of Thomas Jefferson because they made his dream of a nation between two oceans come true.Lewis and Clark: two great but very different men.Plain-spoken William Clark, enjoys the triumphs and acclaim of the expedition, marries his childhood sweetheart, and settles in St. Louis as superintendent of the nation's Indian affairs. His black manservant, York, who accompanied the expedition, forces Clark to confront the very nature of slavery and question the society that condoned it.Meriwether Lewis, a man of fierce courage and brilliant intellect, returns from the Pacific a changed man. Something terrible has happened to him, something insidious, a disease with no name that erodes his health, threatens to destroy his mind - and his honor.In Eclipse, Richard S. Wheeler has written a tour de force novel, an exploration of triumph and tragedy told in the authentically rendered voices of the two greatest American explorers.Moreover, Wheeler provides a solution - dark in its ramifications - to one of the greatest mysteries in American history: the terrible and unexplained death of Meriwether Lewis, age thirty-five, in the wilderness of the Natchez Trace of Tennessee in October, 1809.

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This book, narrated in turns by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, begins with the return of the Corps of Discovery to Saint Louis after their epic journey of exploration. It recounts the lives of the two men after their return, especially the decline of Meriwther Lewis, which the author attributes to venereal disease.
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