Kathleen O'Neal Gear & W Michael Gear

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Tag Archives: Cahokia

New Review for MOON HUNT!

We just received a lovely review for MOON HUNT in the Providence Journal:

“Few authors have ever been able to lay claim to a genre. But Kathleen and Michael Gear have taken historical fiction and made it all their own, as clearly displayed in “Moon Hunt” (Forge, 416 pages, $26.99), the third in their Native American Morning Star series.

All the staples of the Gears’ brilliant, richly drawn tapestries are firmly on display here, once again… The Gears have reconstructed Moon Hunt’s ancient world with such vivid tones and expertly crafted detail that it magically comes to life in the tradition of James Michener. But they’re much better storytellers and the result is a tale certain to generate broad appeal, whether you’re a history buff or not.”

Providence Journal, December 19, 2017.

Thanks! It’s always a relief to get a great review!

Hope everyone is having warm and wonderful holidays!

Mike and Kathy

Book Signing yesterday

We had such a great time at our book signing yesterday in Cody, Wyoming. Legends Bookstore did a fantastic job and we met so many wonderful people. If you need a signed copy for a holiday gift, Legends still has a few signed copies available. Please call Teresa: 307-586-2320, or email her at: legendsbookscody@gmail.com, and she’ll get an autographed copy in the mail to you ASAP.

Hope everyone is well out there. We’re having an unusually warm winter here.

Happy Holidays,

Mike and Kathy

Background for SUN BORN.




The largest “Lost City” in the world is in the United States. It’s called Cahokia.  It was a huge metroplex that lasted nearly three hundred years. Today what remains of the city is scattered throughout—and under–the sprawl of St Louis and lies on both sides of the Mississippi River.

This isn’t our first novel about Cahokia. We’ve been fascinated by this ancient city for three decades.  We started writing about it in PEOPLE OF THE RIVER. And, as new research poured in, finally wrote PEOPLE OF THE MORNING STAR. Cahokia–a city that would have swallowed its eleventh century competitors, London, Paris, and Rome—is mysterious and mesmerizing. Today it consists of large mounds of earth. But these are just the foundations, as if New York City were scrapped away by a giant bulldozer. What made Cahokia into one of the largest cities in the world? What brought tens of thousands of people streaming into the central Mississippi Valley to build the magnificent mounds, causeways, and stunning five-story temples?


(Credit: Townsend mural. Cahokia Mounds)

Archaeologists suspect it was religion, specifically a messiah figure called “Morning Star.” The renown of a living god would have traveled up and down the rivers, word of his coming carried across mountains and down the trails by traders. And the people came, settling in the living god’s proximity in one of the most fertile agricultural valleys in the world.

We also suspect word might have eventually reached Mayan traders who plied the Gulf waters and sailed out into the Carribean. Which begs the question: What would the Itza Maya in Chichen Itza have made of the story of a resurrected god? Especially since it cleaves so closely to the Maya’s own stories of the resurrected heroes from the beginning times.

In SUN BORN we provide a possible answer, one compatible with the tantalizing bits and pieces in the archaeological record. With SUN BORN the story of Seven Skull Shield, Clan Keeper Blue Heron, the truculent Fire Cat, and Lady Night Shadow Star continues. But this time, the Itza lord, Thirteen Sacred Jaguar is coming, and he has a secret. One that has the power to topple Cahokia, and ruin the lives of its most beloved citizens.

Truly, Cahokia was one of the magnificent cities of the prehistoric world. We hope you enjoy this story about ancient America.

Cahokian civilization. Epic fire 900 years ago…

Cahokia- TownsendMural300dpi7x3-x

Was the epic fire that destroyed more than 100 buildings around AD 1170 an accident?  Maybe a ritual cleansing?  Or an act of warfare?  Archaeologists have lots of ideas, but the event did mark the beginning of the end.  People of the Morning Star is set about a hundred years before the great fire, but you can see the seeds of discontent building…


Thanks for the great reviews!

Thank you Beth Colvin of People of the Morning StarThe Advocate for your very kind review of our book about Cahokia: http://theadvocate.com/entertainment/books/9677887-123/people-of-morning-star-reveals 

And thanks, also, to Betty Lytle of The Oklahoman:
We very much appreciate the time you each took to read the novel, and write reviews.  Thanks so much.

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