This book actually deals more with the events leading up to the Trail of Tears, especially the conflict between two influential Cherokee families: the Ridge family and the Ross family, a subject that has fascinated scholars and others for generations. John Ehle (1925-1918) is one of the mainstays of Appalachian literature, and he wrote both fiction and non-fiction. This book really falls somewhere in between and benefits from his skill in both genres. It is both fascinating and fast moving. Ehle grew up in Asheville and went to UNC and taught there for about a decade before venturing, very successfully into innovative public administration. Afterwards, he lived mainly in Winston-Salem, but kept a cabin at Penland. As the husband of the great British actress, Rosemary Harris, he also spent time in London and New York.