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The Indifferent Stars Above: The Harrowing Saga of the Donner Party by [Daniel James Brown]
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The Indifferent Stars Above: The Harrowing Saga of the Donner Party Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 925 ratings

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Length: 420 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

Review

“In this gripping narrative, Brown reveals the extremes of endurance that underlie the history of this nation, and more than that, of humanity in any part of the world, even today, surviving great peril in search of a better life.”

From Booklist

The story of the ill-fated Donner party, a group of nineteenth-century settlers en route to California who became snowbound in the Sierra Nevada mountains and resorted to cannibalism to survive, remains an iconic moment in American history. Given the story’s inherent elements of horror and heroism, it is surprising that this account, told from the point of view of a young bride who survived the tragedy, is finally such an uninteresting book. Part of the problem is the author’s inability of incorporate his copious background material into the flow of the narrative (readers probably don’t need to know about 1840s-era birth-control methods). Even the author’s treatment of the tragedy itself, however, feels dully reportorial, without any of the you-are-there drama that Piers Paul Reid brough to Alive!, his account of history’s second-most-famous cannibalism-survival story, concerning the famous 1972 airplane crash in the Andes. So why bother with this Donner party treatment when so many other, more compelling works exist? The premise itself sets this book apart, and while it’s not handled particularly effectively, it will still interest those fascinated by the subject. --David Pitt --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
925 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United States on December 27, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on August 27, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on November 13, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on January 21, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on August 3, 2016
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Reviewed in the United States on January 15, 2018
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Top international reviews

Palumbex
5.0 out of 5 stars A riveting read of humanity at its most vulnerable.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 3, 2019
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Aaron
5.0 out of 5 stars A brutally brilliant book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 24, 2018
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Ms A J Bendall
5.0 out of 5 stars Grizzly But Beautiful
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 26, 2018
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Neha B.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 30, 2019
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 31, 2017
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LK
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't put it down
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 10, 2020
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Local Reader
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good - impossible to put down!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 26, 2018
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A. Sims
3.0 out of 5 stars this is an interesting account of the Donner Party.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 3, 2019
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Natalie Swinfen
5.0 out of 5 stars What’s not to love!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 30, 2019
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3.0 out of 5 stars It sort of looses it's focus
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 4, 2016
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George Poirier
5.0 out of 5 stars A Heart-Wrenching True Story
Reviewed in Canada on December 22, 2018
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Don Stefano
4.0 out of 5 stars An unbelievable story
Reviewed in Germany on January 1, 2020
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Kristen
5.0 out of 5 stars Well researched and suspenseful
Reviewed in Canada on May 11, 2019
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Lucy May
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping Tale
Reviewed in Germany on October 20, 2017
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Infinity
5.0 out of 5 stars Packend und bewegend
Reviewed in Germany on October 4, 2019
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