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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

True stories from the Wild West, but not like you’ve seen in the movies. This graphic novel by JAMES OTIS SMITH celebrates the extraordinary true tales of three black heroes who took control of their destinies and stood up for their communities in the Old West. Born into slavery in Tennessee, Mary Fields became famous as “Stagecoach Mary,” a cigar-chomping, cardplaying coach driver who never mi…

Overall Book Review:

Perhaps more of us would have paid attention in history class if James Otis Smith had been allowed to write the school books like he does his graphic novels.  Between the pictures and his running narrative, this book is engaging and easy to gobble up.  Eye catching and fun, the art work is yet another aspect that draws in the reader.  Mr. Smith’s presentation of the facts is done in a light-hearted manner so that even a non-history loving person can enjoy the presentation.  Written about three prominent people of the Wild West, it’s captivating to see their personalities and determination to accomplish a task.  They are great role models for the young and old alike.  He could have easily filled this graphic novel with five or ten interesting people and it would still have been spellbinding.  

Have a reluctant reader?  This could be the way to get them into reading and maybe even learn a little history too.  Be sure to read the last few pages, too, because there are even more details and fun information from that time period.  Let’s hope Mr. Smith creates more history graphic novels for us to enjoy and learn from.

Review of a Digital Advance Reading Copy

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Ingram Publisher Services

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language:  None 

Violence/Gore:  A woman was attacked by wolves and she fought them off, no harm to either the woman or the wolves; a woman shot at a man but purposefully missed; a woman punches a man.

Sex/Nudity:  None

Mature Subject Matter:

People play poker, smoking.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

A woman has a reputation for drinking alcohol and some pictures show her drinking with a few men in a saloon; smoking. 

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

Reading a good adventure story has always been a vacation in the theater of my mind. When I’m stressed or just need to get away for a few minutes, I love the opportunity to climb into somebody else’s world. I didn’t enjoy reading until I was in the Air Force and building bombs in Korea; it was a wonderful distraction from the real world. (I tried bull riding, but it wasn’t exciting enough.)