"Whenever I begin work on a new book, I am reborn into a new world."
"Oh, what a man this will be, with such a sign as that!"
In 1768, when Turtle Mother gave birth to a strong baby boy in the heart of the Shawnee nation, a yellow-green shooting star streaked across the heavens. Hard Striker saw the unsome, the birth-sign , and named his son Tecumseh, meaning Panther in the Sky.
The Washington Post called James Thom's last best selling novel, From Sea to Shining Sea, "splendid glorious, engaging" and The Indianapolis Star said, "master's skill brings people and events to life." Now, he turns his remarkable storytelling power and passion for American history to the epic story of Tecumseh's life and gives us heart-thumping novel of one man's magnificent destiny ---to unite his people in the struggle to save the land and their way of life from the relentless press of the white setters
Tecumseh grew up learning to honor Our Grandmother, the spirit force who had created the red peoples so the beautiful earth would not stand empty. He listened to the magic stories of the spirits and heard them whispering in the treetops and the running waters. Every morning for four moons Tecumseh plunged naked into the icy river to earn his pa-waw-ka, the sacred talisman he would carry throughout his life.
His brother Chiksika taught him to hunt and to be as great a war chief as their father had been. His beloved sister Star Watcher taught him the Shawnee ways, and shaped the generous and merciful nature for which he would be admired by even his enemies. Tecumseh became a visionary warrior who would battle the whitefaces, his sworn enemies, again and again, even as he grew curious about their strange ways, even as he befriended the few he could respect.
Panther in the Sky is also the story of the birth of the American Frontier peopled with such men as William Henry Harrison, Daniel Boone, George Rogers Clark and Mad Anthony Wayne as well as Tecumseh's charismatic brother, known to history as the Shawnee Prophet.
In the Panther in the Sky, James Alexander Thom has written his most stirring historical novel to date ---rich, colorful, and bursting with excitement, from the thunder of battle to the peaceful Indian way of life, from the inevitable and triumph that was embodied in the life of Tecumseh.
Now a stirring TNT original film "Tecumseh, The Last Warrior" based on the novel Panther in the Sky.
Six of James Alexander Thom's historical novels have been selected to be included in Random House's Electronic Book (ebook) publishing program.
The titles chosen for such formats as Amazon Kindle, iPod, and
the Sony Reader are:
FOLLOW THE RIVER
THE RED HEART
FROM SEA TO SHINING SEA
PANTHER IN THE SKY
The author finds the news good, but ironic, musing, "I use every bit of my skill and imagination to take my readers hundreds of years into the past -- and now they'll visit those old days through the screen of an electronic gizmo."
First Editions are available
SIGN-TALKER -$20 inc. postage
WARRIOR WOMAN-$20 inc. postage
both in hardcover
SAINT PATRICK'S BATTALION - $20
STAYING OUT OF HELL- is out of print
reissue will be announced.
Autographed for the reader.
Designate the person to whom you want it signed and order at:
I am returning to the internet after a long absence.
My new email address is email@example.com
Contact me by email for book orders, lecture requests, etc.
In the Spring 2014, I was inducted into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame (I was a newspaper and magazine journalist and a lecturer at the Indiana University School of Journalism before becoming a full-time auther.)
My textbook "The Art and Craft of Writing Historical Fiction," first published by Writer's Digest Books, was selected by the Indiana State Library in 2011 as Best Book on Nonfiction.
In 2009, I was the inaugural winner of the annual Indiana Authers Award, National Category.
A memoir is in progress; it will be published in 2015 by Hawthorne Press. Part of the memoir will be a reprise of the textbook "the Art and Craft of Writing Historical Fiction," which sold out in its Writer's DIgest edition.
“What particularly distinguishes this splendidly vigorous and imaginative recreation of the life of the great Shawnee chief Tecumseh (1768-1813) is its bid to capture the spirit of Midwestern Indian culture from within," -- Publishers Weekly
“…Thom states he "was looking especially for insights into the culture, morality, ceremony, and psychic condition of the Shawnee people in the time of their greatest crisis." He seems to have found them, as the characters are alive and believable.” -- Andrea Lee Shuey, Dallas P.L., Library Journal
“In all, then: popular historical fiction at its best.” -- Kirkus Reviews
"Thom shows how, in honest, capable hands, fictionalized biography can add verisimilitude to the life and times of this extraordinary America....The dialogue has the ring of reality about it....Thom is able to get into the thoughts and emotions of his characters...." -- Dee Brown, Los Angeles Times