Walking to Gatlinburg by Howard Frank Mosher
A Novel

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Synopsis

A stunning and lyrical Civil War thriller, Walking to Gatlinburg is a spellbinding story of survival, wilderness adventure, mystery, and love in the time of war.

Morgan Kinneson is both hunter and hunted.  The sharp-shooting 17-year-old from Kingdom County, Vermont, is determined to track down his brother Pilgrim, a doctor who has gone missing from the Union Army.  But first Morgan must elude a group of murderous escaped convicts in pursuit of a mysterious stone that has fallen into his possession.

It’s 1864, and the country is in the grip of the bloodiest war in American history.  Meanwhile, the Kinneson family has been quietly conducting passengers on the Underground Railroad from Vermont to the Canadian border.  One snowy afternoon Morgan leaves an elderly fugitive named Jesse Moses in a mountainside cabin for a few hours so that he can track a moose to feed his family.  In his absence, Jesse is murdered, and thus begins Morgan’s unforgettable trek south through an apocalyptic landscape of war and mayhem.

Along the way, Morgan encounters a fantastical array of characters, including a weeping elephant, a pacifist gunsmith, a woman who lives in a tree, a blind cobbler, and a beautiful and intriguing slave girl named Slidell who is the key to unlocking the mystery of the secret stone.  At the same time, he wrestles with the choices that will ultimately define him – how to reconcile the laws of nature with religious faith, how to temper justice with mercy.  Magical and wonderfully strange, Walking to Gatlinburg is both a thriller of the highest order and a heartbreaking odyssey into the heart of American darkness.


From the Hardcover edition.
 

About Howard Frank Mosher

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HOWARD FRANK MOSHER is the author of ten novels and two memoirs. He was honored with the New England Independent Booksellers Association's President's Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts and is the recipient of the Literature Award bestowed by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His novel A Stranger in the Kingdom won the New England Book Award for fiction and was later made into a movie, as were his novels Disappearances and Where the Rivers Flow North.
 
Published February 23, 2010 by Crown. 354 pages
Genres: History, Action & Adventure, War, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Walking to Gatlinburg

Kirkus Reviews

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That something (readers of On Kingdom Mountain might just have a clue as to what it is), and perhaps a curse on his “yallow head” by one of his fallen tormentors, puts Morgan on a run that takes him to the still-fresh battlefield, down the back of the mountains and deep into the Confederacy in se...

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Historical Novel Society

Part tall tale, part historical fiction, this book opens in northern Vermont in 1864 when young abolitionist Morgan Kinneson neglects his duty to runaway slave Jesse, only to find Jesse hanged.

| Read Full Review of Walking to Gatlinburg: A Novel

Bookmarks Magazine

In his absence, Jesse is murdered, and thus begins Morgan’s unforgettable trek south through an apocalyptic landscape of war and mayhem.

Along the way, Morgan encounters a fantastical array of characters, including a weeping elephant, a pacifist gunsmith, a woman who lives in a tree, a bli...

Mar 22 2010 | Read Full Review of Walking to Gatlinburg: A Novel

North Jersey

Morgan Kinneson, just 17, climbs Kingdom Mountain in the snow, bound for Canada with a runaway slave on the last leg of the Underground Railroad.

Apr 05 2010 | Read Full Review of Walking to Gatlinburg: A Novel

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