4 Stars

This is a beautifully written book. The author effortlessly tells her story and the reader need only curl up and let it flow over them. The story is set shortly after the end of the Civil War in Texas. Captain Kidd is a widower that was a printer before the Civil War. He now makes his living travelling throughout Texas reading the news to people in small towns. He leads a solitary life, although he hopes to convince his daughters to return to Texas with their families to fight for the return of their former home that was lost during the war.
During one of his readings, he is approached by a man that runs freight throughout Texas. The man has been given custody of a 10 year old girl that had been kidnapped by the Kiowa and needs to be returned to her family in San Antonio. The man can’t afford to lose business taking her 400 miles south and asks the Captain to take her. The girl, Johanna, whose parents were killed in the Indian raid in which she was captured, remembers nothing of her former life. She adheres to the Kiowa way of life, does not speak English and longs to return to her Kiowa family. Captain Kidd has strong reservations about helping, but eventually relents and agrees to take her to her family.

The rest of the story chronicles Captain Kidd and Johanna’s eventful journey through Indian territory and hostile country plagued by bandits, ex-soldiers and worse. Both people learn much from each other and about themselves along the way. The book is fairly short and is a quick, interesting read that I recommend.