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CLOUD AND THE FIRE Hardcover – 1 Jan 2014

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The Cloud and the Fire is a revolutionary work. Political, social, timely, and most importantly--human. As a book, it is a riveting epic, and not only because of the scope of the story, but because of the ideas and characters who inhabit the story.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5 reviews
A California That Could Have Been 23 April 2014
By C. Weinstein - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I read 'The Cloud and the Fire' cover to cover in one sitting. I didn't answer my phone. I took breaks, but it was literally impossible to put down.

'America is a cruel, cruel nation but its cruelty is its beauty" writes one of the protagonists in 'The Cloud and the Fire.'

The truth of history can also be cruel, beautiful, violent - and poetic as told by Boston Teran.

One of my very favorite epic storytellers, Teran's fiction is so tightly braided to truth that I am always left wondering, "did this really happen?"

'The Cloud and the Fire' is set in the California Territory near the end of the Gold Rush and in the middle of the Civil War. Unlike classic Western tales of good vs. evil, Teran's story, characters, and plot turns are planted in the nether world between good and evil. Who is friend or foe? What is right or wrong?

America's history has more moral ambiguity than crisp red, white and blue. Teran's detailed account of the Knights of the Golden Circle's (a precursor to the KKK) and their attempts to create an all white California is only one story in 'The Cloud and the Fire.'

Hettie is one of my favorite female protagonists now. A woman in the 1860's with a crippled foot from birth and pocked face make her an unlikely heroine, but her intellect, bravery and vulnerability trumps her circumstance of birth. Hettie is the catalyst for an unexpected alliance taking radical action against injustice.
A True Wild West Tale 28 April 2014
By CharFlorida - Published on
Format: Hardcover
My reading list hasn't had an American West historical fiction novel on it for many decades. Why now? Because of Teran's kick-ass action and twisted but oh so accurate telling of historical fact.

Just as he took on the oil companies nation building in Creed of Violence, Teran has a revisionist telling of the 'wild' in the Wild West.

Fact: there were very rich white men in California prior to the KKK who founded a secret group - The Order of the Knights of the Golden Circle.

As in all his books, Teran takes little known historical facts and with impeccable research (he must have a research team) fleshes out a fascinating entry into the world of 1860's California. The most revelatory are his characters. From the view of highly delineated characters - men and women - we experience what it meant to live in this era. Especially as a crippled but independent woman, a man of mixed heritage living as 'French' not mulatto and a closeted opium addicted writer.

Again, as with all of Boston Teran's books, the book is great literature, but also cinematic. His spare, poetic writing applied to wrenching action sequences rivet me to the page.

When will Hollywood put Teran on the screen? I vote for this to be one of the first.
Fantastic characters & unsung heroes 22 April 2014
By Kristie Hart - Published on
Format: Hardcover
So, I have seen all the Westerns from Stage Coach through Wayne and all of Eastwood's. I know the beloved formula of black hats vs. white hats, rancher vs. farmer, small town vs. outlaws, crooked sheriffs, even the opium hazy McCabe and Mrs. Miller, and cable TV's profane DeadWood.

I thought the genre was 'done' - and then I read Teran's 'The Cloud and the Fire.' As a fan of Teran's unflinching realism written in a hardcore poetic style, I should have known that Teran's take on The Wild West would exceed Tarentino's redux of slavery

An extraordinary ensemble of protagonists walk us into historical facts filtered through Teran's fierce storytelling. Teran's protagonists are usually the supporting characters in most Classic Western tales. They are the disenfranchised, fringe characters brought full center stage. Heroic, tragic, fascinating.

Mostly I just 'recommend' books, but I INSIST you read 'The Cloud and the Fire.' American history beneath the strum and drung of patriotism is this - unsung heroes battling overwhelming injustice at great personal cost.
... realizing that Boston Teran really has only written two good books: "God Is A Bullet" 8 Nov. 2014
By Lawrence Lachmann - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'm finally realizing that Boston Teran really has only written two good books: "God Is A Bullet", which is amazing, and "Never Count Out The Dead", which is not quite as good, but still solid. The rest of his canon is not up to par. Rumor has it that Teran isn't even a person, but a few a few authors writing together under that name. If so, they should all go back and read "God Is A Bullet" again. "The Cloud and the Fire" has some memorable characters, but is a bit of a slog to read. Somewhat entertaining, but ultimately I was somewhat impatient with it.
Closing in on Cormac? 7 Mar. 2014
By Yukio - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Anything is possible but as far as being the next Cormac McCarthy . . . well I don't know. I do know that this guy or guys or gal or gals is one hell of a writer(s). I have followed the progression of style since "God is a Bullet" and I remain impressed. As a professor of English I admire those individuals that still understand that character is the key to great fiction and this is great fiction.
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