Monday, July 13, 2015

Press Release: New Novel about French Settlement of Louisiana Wins Historical Fiction Award

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New Novel about French Settlement of Louisiana Wins Historical Fiction Award

Winner of the 2014 Reader Views Literary Award for Best Historical Fiction, Patrick Shannon’s new novel, “Tame the Wild Land,” tells the fascinating story of the French’s settlement of Louisiana and their relations with the Spanish in Texas.

Tame The Wild Land
PRLog - May 25, 2015 - CONRAD, Mont. -- In the year 1700, a young French Army Captain sets foot on the Gulf Coast of our continent, trudges off into the wilderness, and becomes one of this country’s overlooked Founding Fathers. His name was Louis Juchereau de St. Denis, and his tale of being the driving force in the settlement of French Louisiana and Spanish Texas is the subject of this year’s winner of the Reader Views Literary Award for Best Historical Fiction, Patrick Shannon’s “Tame the Wild Land: A Novel” (ISBN: 9781478737636, Outskirts Press, 2015).

Warrior, explorer, intimate friend of the Indian nations, and imprisoned twice for smuggling, Louis Juchereau de St. Denis led a remarkable life. Now his descendant, award-winning novelist Patrick Shannon, tells his story in the dramatic new historical novel “Tame the Wild Land.” The novel covers the years 1700 to 1716 and offers a look into the hardships faced by the first French settlers, including their relations with the local Native American tribes, and their need to convince the Spanish to trade with them if they are to survive. Louis de St. Denis’ cunning and determination play a major role in keeping the colony alive through these years.

However, after enduring extreme hardships and risking his life for the King of France, Louis becomes disillusioned and dedicates the rest of his life to his two remaining loves: Louisiana and the beautiful Manuela. But Manuela’s Spanish family is opposed to their relationship, and Louis is forced to find a way to please both the French and the Spanish. Ultimately, to keep Louisiana French, he must insure that Texas remains in the hands of his Spanish adversaries.

Shannon’s treatment of this often neglected period of American history is receiving great praise and recognition. Reader Views reviewer Ben Green says of “Tame the Wild Land”: “The characters speak to one another in dialogue suited to their station and place in history. The descriptions of the scenes accurately portray the period. The author’s knowledge of the inner workings of the 1700’s era mercantile bases, economies, and cultural norms seem on point.... There is not a boring moment from the first to last chapter.... I would give ‘Tame the Wild Land’ by Patrick Shannon five stars and would give it more if I could.”

Tyler R. Tichelaar, a previous winner of the Reader Views Best Historical Fiction award for his novel “Narrow Lives” and the current award sponsor, says of “Tame the Wild Land,” “I am always delighted by the quality of the books that win this award each year. ‘Tame the Wild Land’ is one of the most compelling to date because it explores a little known but incredibly important aspect of our national history. Shannon’s writing is concise, his dialogue is realistic, and his plot is fast-paced. Eighteenth century Louisiana and Texas come to life for the reader in these pages.”

Reader Views reviews more than 2,000 books per year by self-published and small press authors. Its Annual Literary Awards recognize the very best of these up-and-coming authors. Shannon’s novel joins a series of previous historical fiction winners on such diverse topics as eighteenth century pirates, opera composers, Japanese-Americans during World War II, and soldiers in the Vietnam and Civil Wars.

About the Author
Patrick Shannon is the author of “Tame the Wild Land” and a direct descendant of his novel’s protagonist, Louis de St. Denis. His previous three novels, “Viva Cisco,” “Letters from Wheatfield,” and “Viva Laughter!” have won a total of five literary awards. Born and raised in Southern California, he currently resides in Montana. Upon hearing that he had won the Reader Views award for Best Historical Fiction, he remarked that although he is now eighty-two, he feels inspired to write another long planned novel about the famous French explorer, LaSalle.

“Tame the Wild Land: A Novel” (ISBN: 9781478737636 Outskirts Press, 2015) can be purchased through local and online bookstores. Publicity contact: Review copies available upon request.

Media Contact
Reader Views

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