You can read this book in about three hours, but please don’t. When you read this book please take your time. Get a map and spend some time researching this region. Now, for me, this book was like a stake to the heart because I spent a lot of years wandering these very lands. Castroville, Bexar County, Lampasas, Llano, and on and on. Texas people, Texas.
You have to know something. Our family moved from rural Indiana to San Antonio when I was in fourth grade. My father took us to the fancy room in our house, the room we never used unless something dramatic was happening, and told us “We are moving to Texas.” My very first thought was of a desert, like the Sahara. Tumbleweeds. Little did I know how wrong I was.
Texas at that time was heaven, at least to us. The residue of Old Mexico, Spain, Germany, and a variety of other histories were here. Very little traffic, dirt roads in our neighborhood, and overloaded schools trying to keep pace with the rapidly growing metropolis. Walking into La Mansion del Norte for the first time and seeing the tile and the dresses and the food. Heartstruck.
News of the World, by Paulette Jiles, is a very, very good book and story. I was immediately hooked on the characters and the path of their future. My mind bounced from Blood Meridian to True Grit but still remained on Jiles and HER story.