I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang
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I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  41 ratings  ·  19 reviews
In the waning days of Indian Territory, the multi-racial, teenaged Rufus Buck Gang embarked on a vicious, childish, and deadly 13-day rampage that shocked even this lawless place. Their goal was to take back Indian lands. Based on the true story, this is a tale of how real-life figures "Hanging Judge" Isaac C. Parker, notorious half-black, half-Indian outlaw Cherokee Bill,...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published September 1st 2011 by Legba Books (first published July 7th 2011)
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Leonce Gaiter
Dec 31, 2011 Leonce Gaiter rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  (Review from the author)
Yes, I wrote it. Yes, I read it again. And yes, I remain extraordinarily proud of it and frankly, will put it up against the better books I've experienced.
First of all, I'd like to say that Native American history/ Wild West is not my usual genre. That being said, I sped through this book surprisingly quick.

I can't say that I like or dislike the book; to say that I like it would be to condone the actions of the various characters - which I refuse to do. But to say I dislike the book would be to turn my eyes on the well-written, if not disgustingly detailed passages.

The author, Gaiter, utilizes the writing style that switches between the present a...more
Kristi Bernard
Today when we think of gangs our thoughts are of young punk kids who just don't want to work or go to school so they can get a job and join the ranks of the working class. Just like the rest of us. Have we asked ourselves what is their motivation? Do we really know why they dress and act the way they do? Perhaps there is an underlying method to their madness that is inspired by this generation that we can't see, or chose not to see.

Gaiter brings to life a historical novel of the old west. But no...more
Dec 22, 2011 Irina rated it 4 of 5 stars Recommends it for: Anyone
Recommended to Irina by: Goodreads Giveaway
This was one of those fabulous historical fiction books that throws you right in the middle of the time period without needing to do research or suffer through backlog history lessons in the narrative. The story is that of half African-American, half Creek Indian Rufus Buck and the horrid crimes he and his gang committed in the wild, wild West of the late 1800s. This isn't a book that glorifies the West or outlaw bandits. It's not a book that totally demonizes them either. This is a book about h...more
I made the mistake of starting this book the very evening I pulled it out of my mailbox after a long day at work ---- it captured me immediately and a couple hours later I was still curled up on the couch reading with no dinner made, in the clothes I'd worn to work, wondering where the time had gone! I hate to admit that American History is not my strong point - my father was an Anglophile and raised me to be the same and I probably know more about the Welsh than I do my own country - but this i...more
*First Reads Contest Winner*

I finished this book quickly not because I was so engaged, but because I just wanted it done with. I really wanted to like this book better than I did, but still, I didn't hate it either.

The author does a good job describing the feelings of several various characters, treating them fairly. Towards the end, the pace finally picks up so the story could come to an end. Those were my favorite qualities of the book.

Too bad it needed to rush at the end though, as the first...more
Jessica (booneybear)
Everything about this book was quick. Right after being notified that I won it through Goodreads, it was delivered to my doorstep (I believe I received it 2 or 3 days after winning!) No sooner had I received the book that I began reading. Once I started reading, I didn't stop. I think it took me all of a day to read it.

I had never heard of the Rufus Buck Gang before and it was nice to be able to learn something new, because as soon as I finished the book I had to google the Rufus Buck Gang to s...more
Reggie Cox
Firstly, any indication that the author gives that, these teenage outlwas, who happened to be of mixed race Native American, Black, were out to seek justice for i'm sure the difficult and racist treatment we all know they most likely suffered in what was know as Indian territory or the badlands in the 19th century. The fact is on their rampage they gunned down a little black kid, raped and murdered a Native American woman, so justice is not what these 19th century thugs were after.
Christina Kelley
This was a great book. I found the Native-American and African-American history very intriguing. It provided insight into the relationships that were formed by these people and the bonds that kept them together. I feel closer to my ancestors after completing this book. While the violence was hard to read, the author painted a very clear picture of the thoughts and mind-set of each character.
Stephanie Showalter
I received this book from the author through a goodreads giveaway. While this book is not my usual genre, I really enjoyed this book. I especially enjoyed learning about the Rufus Buck Gang and wonder why they didn't teach us about these groups more in school. If you want to read a book that puts a nice spin on what you thought you knew about the wild west, read this book!
Nov 10, 2011 KyBunnies rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to KyBunnies by: Goodreads.com

This was a very interesting book about historical gangs in the Wild West. I had never heard of this gang before reading this book but it was a well written book. I really enjoyed reading it.

Erin Tuzuner
It took me a while to finish this book, but it was not for lack of interest. The story, prose, and historical tone of this novel blew me away. I finished this around the time I watched True Grit, and it was viscerally engaging. I have several people who want to read this, and I can't wait for them to share this experience with me.
This was a hard book to read and I am not sure if the author was reporting facts or trying to garner understanding and sympathy for the gang. I had no understanding or sympathy for them. I wasn't always sure what he was trying to portray.
This was a hard book to read -- full of violence, murder, rape -- but also a sad book -- the "whys" behind the thoughts and actions of both Rufus and Judge Parker -- the story, based on fact, was well handled by Mr. Gaiter.
James Youngblood
Aside form Lonesome Dove, this might be the only western I've ever read. I couldn't stop reading it. It kept surprising me but there was nothing forced about it. Really unique and highly recommended.
Shirley Blair
I received this book through the Goodreads giveaways. I loved it. It kept me going from beginning to end. I love to read about this period. I will keep this writer on my radar.
This was a hard book to read -- murder, rape, etc. -- but Mr. Gaiter handled it well. It was also a sad story -- a shattering of hopes and dreams.
Oct 16, 2011 Bmfoa is currently reading it
Am a few pages in and loving it. So glad to have found this new voice.
Great first read a wonderful different take on the wild west!
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Raised in New Orleans, Washington D.C., Germany, Missouri, Maryland and elsewhere, Leonce Gaiter is the quintessential army brat—rootless, restive, and disagreeable. He began writing in grade school and continued the habit through his graduation from Harvard. He moved to Los Angeles and put his disagreeability to work in the creative and business ends of the film and music industries. His nonficti...more
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