Like the twists and turns in the mighty Mississippi, you never know what's around the bend in Jack Todd's book, Sun Going Down.

A historical novel that charts the course of an extended family over the span of many years, the dank smells of war, the fog and the river rise up in your throat with every early part of the story. It isn’t pretty in parts but it's very real.

The voices of Eb and Lucian come to life around the fire, as they haggle over the price of a chicken, or debate whether we'd be better off, if He'd put Eve in charge.

A poignant tale of a family's struggle to make their lot better in this life, lest they don't get another chance.

The story moves forward with undercurrents as strong as the river itself.

Just when you think that the sailing is smooth, another plot twist springs forth like the sorghum trees and you're back in it's grip.

Todd demonstrates a solid knowledge of the facts surrounding the war that changed the US and its people forever. You can still see those lines drawn today, although in a very different manner. The parallels illustrated serve to make us question our own lot in life, how we arrived here, from whom and where, as well as to examine our relationships today, before a river, a war or the next snowstorm sweeps them away forever.

A must read for any US history buff as well as all proponents of freedom of any kind. Todd makes a case for love and beauty, where in fact there could be none. The people who inhabit these pages remind us all of someone we knew, their twang, their walk and their solid determination to move ahead regardless of the obstacles placed in their path.

It is a story of pluck and courage that should inspire us all.


Sun Going Down is available online at the following retailers:



August 2, 2009.