Turn the Stars Upside Down is the compelling and little-known story of Crazy Horse's surrender in 1877 only months after his last fight with the U.S. Army at Battle Butte, his futile attempts to find peace for his warrior heart among the reservation Indians, and his eventual undoing at the hands of his own Oglala people.
For all his life, this warrior has been a defender of the weak and helpless. But surrounded now on a tiny red island in a sea of white, he finds himself powerless against the forces arrayed against him in what will ultimately be his battle, waged against deceptive army officers, and even against Oglala leaders who whisper, connive, and conspire behind his back to bring about his fall. Even more disastrous will be those friends who once fought at his side against the encroaching white tide--friends who now turn against him, joining his enemies in plotting against this last great hero of the Lakota people.
Award-winning and bestselling frontier author Terry C. Johnston brings all his talent to bear in this tragic tale of betrayal, with all the immediacy and emotion he has so skillfully created in thirty previous novels. No story of the Indian Wars would be complete without this final episode in the short life of Crazy Horse, a story of treachery and deception, but also--ultimately--of the victory of the human spirit.
Marking a hiatus from Cries from the Earthand Lay the Mountains Low volumes one and two of a projected trilogy based on the Nez Perc War of 1877 this 16th western in the author's long-running Plainsmen series recounts Crazy Horse's surrender to the U.S. Army at Camp Robinson, Neb. Here the western historian diligently attempts to set straight the diverse and highly questionable account of the shameful events leading up to Crazy Horse's mortal stabbing while he was resisting incarceration in an Army guardhouse on September 5, 1877. The perfidy begins scarcely a day after Crazy Horse's surrender, when the U.S. decides not to honor its promise to give him an agency to the north. It is further compounded when the Army reneges on its pledge to allow him to take a hunting party to gather meat to see his people through the winter. When Crazy Horse is offered the opportunity to scout for the Army to quell a new Nez Perc uprising, he responds eagerly, but a malevolent interpreter bearing an old grudge misquotes him as saying, "we will go north and fight until a white man isn't left." With his credibility undermined by the jealous old Chief Red Cloud, even his friends turn their backs on him. Crazy Horse seeks asylum at his uncle Spotted Tail's agency but is seduced to return, unaware that the Army intends to send him to Florida in chains. Laying bare another chapter in our nation's ignominious history of lies and broken promises in dealing with the Indians, this is a discomfiting chronicle. At times the narrative is bogged down by repetition and unnecessary detail, but fans of the Plainsmen series shouldn't be disappointed. Author tour.