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A Son of the Hills   By: (1860-)

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A Son of the Hills by Harriet T. Comstock is a remarkable piece of historical fiction that delves into the life of the protagonist, Jim, and his experiences as he grows up in the unforgiving Tennessee hills. Set against the backdrop of the Civil War, this novel offers a unique perspective on the era, highlighting the struggles and resilience of those living in the rural areas rather than focusing solely on the battlefield.

Comstock's ability to vividly depict the setting and scenery is truly captivating. The way she describes the hills, forests, and creeks transports the reader into Jim's world, allowing them to feel the emotions and hardships he endures. The author's attention to detail is remarkable, painting each scene with such precision that it's easy to visualize every aspect of Jim's surroundings.

One of the novel's strengths lies in its character development. Jim, the main character, is incredibly relatable, as he goes through a range of experiences and emotions that shape his growth. Comstock skillfully showcases his internal struggle as he tries to find his place in the world and understand the complexities of his surroundings. The supporting characters, such as Jim's family and friends, also play an integral role in the story, providing depth and allowing readers to witness the impact they have on Jim's life.

Moreover, Comstock adeptly weaves historical events into the narrative, providing readers with a genuine understanding of the time period. Through Jim's eyes, we witness the hardships faced by those who lived far away from the battlegrounds, emphasizing the human toll that war exacts on even the most remote communities. The author's meticulous research shines through, enhancing the authenticity of the story.

However, while the narrative is engrossing, there are moments when the pacing feels uneven. At times, the story lingers on seemingly insignificant details, causing a slight disruption in the overall flow. Nevertheless, this is a minor flaw in an otherwise captivating literary work.

In conclusion, A Son of the Hills showcases Harriet T. Comstock's talent for crafting a compelling story set against a fascinating historical backdrop. Through her descriptive prose and memorable characters, she brings to life a tumultuous era and offers a fresh perspective on the Civil War. It is an engaging tale of resilience, loss, and the enduring spirit of those who call the hills their home.

First Page:

[Frontispiece: "Cautiously Cynthia stepped close and looked in . . . Sandy was painting at his easel"]









Copyright, 1913, by


All rights reserved, including that of translation into foreign languages, including the Scandinavian

A Son of the Hills


Lost Hollow lies close at the foot of the mountain which gives it its name. The height of neither is great, geographically considered; the peak is perhaps eighteen hundred feet above sea level: The Hollow, a thousand, and from that down to The Forge there is a gradual descent by several trails and one road, a very deplorable one, known as The Appointed Way, but abbreviated into The Way.

There are a few wretched cabins in Lost Hollow, detached and dreary; between The Hollow and The Forge are some farms showing more or less cultivation, and there is the Walden Place, known before the war they still speak of that event among the southern hills as if Sheridan had ridden through in the morning and might be expected back at night as the Great House.

Among the crevasses of the mountains there are Blind Tigers, or Speak Easies as the stills are called and, although there is little trading done with the whiskey outside the country side, there is much mischief achieved among the natives who have no pleasure of relaxation except such as is evolved from the delirium brought about by intoxication... Continue reading book >>

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