Crossing the Panther's Path

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Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 2002 - Juvenile Fiction - 229 pages
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A rousing historical novel about the War of 1812
Fifteen-year-old Billy Calder, half Irish, half Mohawk, is a bright student at his Jesuit boarding school, fluent in several European and Indian tongues, who is disgusted by the aggressive, unfair tactics of the United States government in
its dealings with and treatment of Native American peoples. He has the good fortune while visiting his father, a captain of the British Army, to meet Tecumseh, the Shawnee chief whose name means "the Panther Passing Across." Tecumseh is seeking support from British officers for his plans to unite numerous Indian tribes to fight the encroachment of Americans into the upper Midwest.
Though Billy is eager to join the cause of Tecumseh, he's compelled to wait until he is a bit older. When he can stand it no longer, he finds his way to the village of Tippecanoe, where he becomes Tecumseh's occasional confidant and principal interpreter. As failed negotiations with U.S. leaders make war inevitable, Billy never loses faith in the great chief or his goals, and is ready to face the battles ahead, whatever the consequences.

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About the author (2002)

Elizabeth Alder is the author of "The King's Shadow," which was an ALA Best Book for Young Adults. She lives in Willoughby, Ohio.

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