"I read your book late last year and am only now getting around to emailing you. I loved the book! I thought it was so well written - part travelogue, part history, all of it entertaining. Your trip sounded incredible and your descriptions of the places you saw made me feel I was along for the ride with you. I could feel the sorrow at Wounded Knee and Fort Robinson. I hope to see some of these sights myself someday. I also loved seeing things from your point of view as a foreign traveler and chuckled as I could relate to some of your problems with the rental car and GPS! As I read I felt that I had discovered a kindred spirit. I share your love of Native culture and history. In addition to how well it is written, the book itself is beautiful. It appears that you thought of everything : full color photos, Native American glossary, suggested reading list... Kudos on a well done job!"
Reviewed in the United States on January 8, 2021
"Using his gift for clear, witty prose, Lahiri invites us into the passenger seat of his rental car to join him on his 3,000-mile journey through the Great Plains. Along the way, we meet Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse, George Custer, Wild Bill Hickok, and a dozen other spirits of that tragic age. We visit battlefields, cemeteries, and monuments—the poignant reminders of a dark chapter in the history of a nation that was “conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” Over gargantuan, well-gravied American dinners, we ponder the complexity of human nature and wrestle uneasily with our capacity for evil. And yet, while the breeze at Wounded Knee will forever whisper, “Homo homini lupus,” Lahiri shows us that greed and violence are hardly the totality of our being, and that everywhere there is much goodness and nobility. We see this in the ordinary people he meets along the road, and in extraordinary folks like Cindy and Peter Catches and Stella Iron Cloud. Indeed, although the historical backdrop of this book is sobering, Lahiri leavens his tale with strong evidence for hope. He describes how throughout Native communities, dynamic tribal chiefs and spiritual leaders are preserving their cultures, educating the younger generations, and continuing the struggle for justice. So open the door and get in. Lahiri’s insightfulness, deep humanity, and humor ensure that The Red Road Across the Great Plains is a journey worth taking."
Reviewed in the United States on March 5, 2020
The Native American's surrender of the lands they loved to the relentless and deceitful onslaught of the expanding United States is an important story to tell. Lahiri's unusual self-identification as an "Indian from India", helps add to the significance of his perspective. He is passionate and well-researched in recounting the history behind the locations he visited and has a fresh outlook on the often unobserved less-known spots. But he doesn't just dwell on the past but explores current economic issues and offers a glimpse of hope for the downtrodden.
It's a good read and has a few humorous tidbits such as (1) how easy it is to speed in the wide open prairies; (2) the hugeness of American meals; and (3) how strange the tourist town of Dodge City was. Personal encounters with a variety of Native Americans and well-documented detailed history result in a poignant narrative. I'd recommend this book to anyone curious about American Indian history in the Prairie lands and what a solo pilgrimage feels like.
Amazon Verified Customer
Part history, part travel, author Chandra Lahiri’s novel does an amazing job of creating a narrative that showcases the authors real life journey to these iconic, historic and sometimes tragic locations in the West and Mid-Western United States. The evenly paced read delved deeply into the violent, heartbreaking and blood-soaked history of the Native American tribes and the impact on both their culture and the white settlers as they expanded their territory further and further westward.
From the genocide that was the Trail of Tears to the Civil War and more, the author lays out the history behind the Native American people and highlights the struggles they endured. However this history is broken up naturally by the travel aspect of the author’s journey, showcasing the modern day experiences the author had while seeing first hand the locations and the history of the United States as it settled westward.
The novel is expertly written, with a voice and tone that speaks of personal experiences the author had on this trip with historic facts that are both known and tragically some that are overlooked or forgotten, for as the author points out in the book, history is written by the victors, but often history is only half true or inaccurate if only written by the victors.
This was a brutally honest, emotional and well written historical/travel novel. An even mix of historical research, graphs and statistics that really put the history of the Native American people and culture into perspective, with the natural observations and personal stories brought to life while on a life-changing trip like the one the author experienced, this novel has something for everyone, and is not to be missed. So if you are a fan of travel stories or are just a major history buff like myself and want to experience the emotional journey of the Native American tribes of the United States, then be sure to grab your copy of author Chandra Lahiri’s “Red Road Across The Great Plains” today!
Author of the “Nightmare Academy” series
"I am reading the most wonderful kindle book about Native Americans!...I am a magnet to this story and that surprises me. As historically significant as the information is to me, I'm just as captivated by the language and style...It is truly magnificent!"
Senior International Educationist
"As lovers of books we always look for that one story that will stay with us forever. The story of the American Indians is one such, captured in Chandra Lahiri’s book with compelling authenticity and reason, touching in the sheer intensity of tragic history. A highly recommended read."
"Too well written!!!!! This needs to be a movie! (Not kidding) Hearing it makes it fresh, it is a hoot! A passionate look and deep contextual historical essay on why the places you saw have a historical or current meaning to Native Americans."
Mark St. Pierre
Author & Film-maker, Pine Ridge Reservation
"The author avers that the book is a record of his solo pilgrimage to the heartlands of the Native Americans. From the title, when I picked the book, I reckoned that I would get to read a travelogue and a narrative of the crimson trail painted by the invaders with the blood of the trusting, nomadic natives. A “Red Road” in the Native speak is a peace road; contrary to the intuitive cognition of a “blood road” by a western accultured person like me. A total alien to the Natives and the invaders, as I read along, I learnt about the history, culture, beliefs, struggles and contemporary socio- economic issues of the Native Americans as well as about powerful and colorful personalities past and present. While being passionate with sympathies for the Native Americans, the author has been mostly fair and thoroughly sincere in interpreting past events. Through an easy and engaging style, the book takes you on an enjoyable and enlightening journey often peppered with funny interludes and tongue-in-cheek advertence. I strongly recommend the book to anyone interested in learning and experiencing some thing different about an important aspect of America."
Senior Banker & Corporate Board Member
"Lahiri's love and respect for Native American culture is obvious from the first page. His personal journal tracing the footsteps of many Plains tribes resounds with authenticity and connection. He unflinchingly recounts the painful history of these proud peoples once white Europeans showed up and offers a hopeful look at the future. Highly recommended."
High School AP English Teacher
Reviewed in the United States on February 2, 2020
Lahiri's "Red Road Across the Great Plains" provides interesting interpretation, context and perspective to a significant era in American history. His ability to dissect the key issues and drivers of that time period allow the reader to understand both the top level and more esoteric aspects facing the Native Americans of that region. His story telling is reminiscent of Ken Burns, and his matter of fact voice leaves little room for subjective interpretation of this difficult time period for the Native Americans of the Great American Plains tribe.
Verified Amazon.com customer
5 out of 5 stars Enjoyable and Informative
A candid, personal and easy to read book. Definitely recommended for anyone interested in Native American history or American history in general. The author reflects on a number of serious subjects while keeping a light tone and not getting bogged down in details. Lots of good and current information about historical locations.
Reviewed in Germany
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Amazon Purchase
The Native America's surrender of the lands they loved to the relentless and deceitful onslaught of the expanding United States is an important story to tell. Lahiri's unusual self-identification as an "Indian from India", helps add to the significance of his perspective. He is passionate and well-researched in recounting the history behind the locations he visited and has a fresh outlook on the often unobserved less-known spots. But he doesn't just dwell on the past but explores current economic issues and offers a glimpse of hope for the downtrodden.
Its a good read and has a few humorous tidbits such as (1) how easy it is to speed in the wide open prairies; (2) the hugeness of American meals; and (3) how strange the tourist town of Dodge City was. Personal encounters with a variety of Native Americans and well-documented detailed history result in a poignant narrative. I'd recommend this book to anyone curious about American Indian history in the Prairie lands and what a solo pilgrimage feels like.
Reviewed in the United States on March 5, 2020
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase