Indian Blood is a charming and powerful story set in the 1880s about a mixed-breed boy who moves into a valley of cattle farmers just when things are about to change. Settlers are coming into the valley and they will take land the farmers have used for their cattle for years. Government policy has changed. The cattleman can do nothing.
They would have adjusted in time, they have to, but the situation is made worse by greedy men who aim to take all the available land themselves then sell it to the settlers for inflated prices. The man at the head of the scheme is an unpleasant and bloodthirsty villain who perpetrates extortion and murder and that he then blames on Billy. After all, the boy has Indian Blood, he must be tainted. However, the author shows Billy to be made of more noble stuff than the white men that put him down. The message is that if blood has anything to do with making you a good man, then Indian blood is pure.
I really enjoyed this book. Billy is a beautiful and noble character that I fell in love with immediately. He is well drawn, as are all the characters, even the evil fellow comes across as an all too believable person. I was sad when the good guys died and I rejoiced when Billy and his friends came out on top.
The plot was surprisingly unpredictable and moved along at a good pace, with something else always happening to keep me interested. The ending was completely unexpected but also very realistic.
The writing has an old world feel very appropriate for the era, and the book is well edited and finished. Though full of struggle and with some very sad moments, it’s essentially a heart-warming story that I highly recommend.