Friday, December 2, 2011

Review of Calico (Children of the Shawnee #1) by Allison Bruning

"A man whose heart appears pure shall deceive you. The power he holds over you leads you to evil. You shall denounce the ways of Our Grandmother. Another man comes, whose pure heart beats for you alone, and who has a pure spirit devoted to Our Grandmother. He shall defeat the evil and set you free." A prophecy has been cast against her. In a harsh world deep within the western frontier of Ohio and Kentucky, Calico Marie Turner must learn to survive among the Shawnee and trust the one man who hates her the most, Chief Little Owl Quick as the Wind.

How can Calico survive in a world that wants to destroy her?

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Recommended: Yes.

                                                                  About Calico
An engrossing read from the start is in order. For a reader, that on most times have no real contact with Indian tribe values this book is a great start in reading with paranormal touches. This story isn't about Indians particularly the Shawnee's. No, its a fictional story touching up on historical events. As early American colonists head to expanding in the New World of America, they of course, encounter Indians. Of all of them, the Shawnee are the most highly strict practitioners of the old ways. As so, they don't let any outsiders into their society especially white people. Although, they make an exception for the family of Calico Marie Lutree Turner and her family.

The Lutree Turner family has a messy past. Calico's mother,Anna, from a young age was abused sexually by her father a British lord. Her brother, Alexander, being her molester against her will too because of their cruel father. Through time, they find themselves a way to escape. Thanks, to François a French fur trader who she falls in love with a new family emerges. Helping Anna to heal the family wounds of the past are also the Shawnee Indians that have been close to Francois and welcome Anna as well as a daughter. Just as things seem great, her husband catches an illness and infects her with it also. Leaving her daughters, Calico and Rose orphans. The Shawnee take them up out of love for them as a family. Rose and Calico grow up in the midst of the Shawnee but a prophecy threatens Calico's life. A great evil seeks to destroy her. Calico's spirit guide swears to protect her.

As Calico grows up the evil of prophecy emerges but she can't reveal it for the reason that doing so will rip apart her Shawnee way of life. In doing so, she pushes away the warrior mentioned in prophecy that wants to rescue her from the evil that she can't defeat by herself.

What a lovely portrayal is Calico of the Shawnee way of life. From the story narration we see various character's point of views that highlight all that was that type of way of life. It also points out the hatred at times of the white people toward tribal life. There are great moments filled with romance that is both sweet and hot. The romantic scenes also touch along several sexual encounters that are heart-warming but not overtly graphic. All these things are very pleasant to come across but what's the best is the paranormal chips in Calico that stand out, so brightly with the created myth of "Our Grandmother" and other spirit guides of what's surely Shawnee lore.

Highly recommend for quite a few reasons from its historical fiction and its paranormal instances. Tribal language and other characters' language can be heard in the writing itself further supplementing the genius of the whole novel. While the introduction was not all a bad start it's toward the middle portion and until the end that its entirety grapples your attention. The creativity in myth which has hardly been used in recent years is by far a big bonus!   
                                                                Overall: Amazing read!
                 Genre: Historical Fiction, Paranormal, Shawnee Indians Way Of Life

Available as: Hardcover, $11.60 from,
E-book, $0.99 from's Kindle Edition 
Recommended Ages: 17 and Up                                                                   
Paperback: 278 pgs.
Published: August 15th 2011 by Page Turners Publishing, LLC

 For This Review:  *Book Copy Provided For Review by Author*   

                                                                    About the Author

Allison Bruning is the Executive Director of the Kentucky Young Writers Connection, a non-profit agency of writers who promote young authors throughout the state of Kentucky, Allison originally hails from Marion, Ohio. She is family oriented. Her father, Roland Irving Bruning, was the son of German immigrants who owned Bruning Brothers, a confectionary in Guttenberg, New Jersey. Her mother's family had been in the United States since the 17th century. Allison enjoys family stories and genealogy. Yer educational background includes a BA in Theatre Arts with a minor in Anthropology.

She holds graduate hours in Cultural Anthropology and Education. In 2007 she was named Who's Who Among America's Educators. She is also the recipient of the Girl Scout Silver and Gold Awards and was named All-American Scholar in 1996.

Allison lives with her husband in an Amish community close to the Ohio River. She is currently involved with DAR, her church, and the Caroll County Library. Her published works include cultural historical articles for under the name Al Bruning , publications in various magazines and on her hubpages blog. 

Calico is part one of the Children of the Shawnee series set in Kentucky before, during and after the American Revolution. She is also working on another ser`inspired by the life of hergreat-great grandmother during the turn of the century Ohio. The Heritage Series begins with Elsa. She has other novels in the works as well. Allison's interest includes Ohio Valley history, anthropology, travel, culture, history, camping, hiking, backpacking farm life, and genealogy.

Her expertise are in Native American culture, especially the Shawnee; early Ohio history; genealogy; cultural anthropology; education; and writing. 


Cindy C Bennett said...

Great review, Cassandra. Sounds like a really interesting read. I'm adding this one to my TBR!

Cassandra @ Book & Movie Dimension a Blog said...

Thanks Cindy. It's a recommended read.

In Julie's Opinion said...

Thanks so much for bringing this new author to my attention! I lived near Marion, Ohio, for years, also right in the heart of Amish country, and it truly is beautiful up there. This sounds like a very intriguing book, and the start to a great new series! I can't wait to read it:)
jwitt33 at live dot com

Author Sherry Gammon said...

Wow! Haven't heard of this novel. It looks SOOO good! Thanks for the review! Adding it to my list.

Cassandra @ Book & Movie Dimension a Blog said...

Hi Sherry,

Glad you find the novel interesting.
It's pretty great reading.

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