Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Native view of Coronado

My upcoming historical novel Winter of the Metal People is a story that's never been told. Old Spanish chronicles have controlled what we've known about America's first Indian war for more than 470 years. The Puebloan side has never been heard. Although the first, the Tiguex War (pronounced TEE-wesh) is the least known of the Indian wars in the United States. This will be the first book devoted exclusively to the war.
     Francisco Vázquez de Coronado and his expedition of four hundred European men-at-arms and two thousand Aztecs and other Mexican Indian allies waged the war against Pueblo Indians in present-day New Mexico in 1540-41.
     This book melds history and fiction so it can present for the first time the Native viewpoint of the Coronado expedition.
     Although a novel, it is based on the historical record and includes many pages of historical endnotes, which will be available online
     Plausible fiction is used only to fill the historical gaps of a long-ago time — many of those gaps left deliberately by the Spanish chroniclers. All Europeans named in this book, as well as Xauían and many other Native Americans, are drawn from the historical record. The only fictitious characters are some Puebloans, although even the had real-life counterparts. For example, there was a Tiwa leader named Poquis who might very well have been the leader of the guerilla warfare against the Spaniards after Xauían’s death.

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