Henry Holt & Company: The Eighth Detective by Alex Pavesi

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The Son

In mid-19th century Texas, when Eli McCullough is 12, Comanches take him captive after killing his family. A generation later, Eli's son Peter rebels against his father after the latter orders the mass slaying of a family of Mexicans on the land adjacent to theirs. Now, Eli's granddaughter Jeannie McCullough, 86 and a formidable businesswoman, lies prone on the floor of her parlor, wondering what has happened to her while slowly losing consciousness. These three narrative threads, taking place over a span of nearly two centuries, set the scene for a novel that is an epic in the truest sense of the word: massive in scope, replete with transformations in fortune and fate, and drenched in war.

Lush with historical detail, The Son is a vivid evocation of time, place and the violence that lies at the heart of both the destruction and emergence of societies throughout history. As the balance of power shifts--with considerable carnage--among the Comanches, the Spanish and the Anglos, so does the economic and environmental reality of the state, as cattle eventually give way to oil in the 20th century. Horrific events serve as a constant reminder that Texas, and the United States as a whole, was forged in blood--that of the indigenous people and of the Europeans who settled there. --Ilana Teitelbaum, book reviewer at the Huffington Post