This family story told by Eth Clifford surely is similar to scores of untold family stories of that time of change. Indian blood still flows in the veins of thousands of Hoosiers, some of whom know it, others who don’t. When a people is rooted for centuries in a part of the country, no amount of plowing or paving or policy can excise the spirit from it. And so, stories like this one will always be stirring, meaningful and haunting, here in “the Land of the Indians.” —from the Introduction by James Alexander Thom
1819 on the Indiana frontier is a year that Takawsu will come to remember as “the year of the three-legged deer.” He and his sister, Chilili, are the children of an Indian mother and a white settler father. Their destinies suddenly become intertwined with that of a lone fawn who has lost a leg—and his mother—in a panther attack. Takawsu and Chilili rescue the fawn, nurse him back to health, and raise him as one of their own. But tensions build around this mixed family, as Indians and whites battle for the land. There’s a rogue Indian named Stone Eater and a band of whites who senselessly massacre an Indian hunting party. Tempers flare and a trial ensues. In the midst of it all is Maskanako, the lone fawn, who represents purity, resiliency, and goodness. Eth Clifford tells this suspenseful story with compelling sensitivity and authenticity of detail. Sure to engage readers young and old.