King's Mountain (Ballad, #10)
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King's Mountain (Ballad #10)

3.26 of 5 stars 3.26  ·  rating details  ·  325 ratings  ·  107 reviews
From the New York Times bestselling author—the first Ballad novel to feature the epic, and gorgeously-portrayed, American Revolution

John Sevier had not taken much interest in the American Revolution, he was too busy fighting Indians in the Carolinas and taming the wilderness. But when an arrogant British officer threatened his settlement—promising to burn the farms and kil...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published September 24th 2013 by Thomas Dunne Books
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Oct 20, 2013 Kelly rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: No one
Considering this book is about a battle during the Revolutionary War, I expected the book to be at least somewhat exciting. Instead, I found it dull.

The biggest problem I had with King's Mountain was the way the story was told. The two main characters (John Siever and Virginia Sal) tell the story from first person point of view, in separate chapters. I felt this method did not work. It seemed the only reason the author wrote in this way was so the characters could have long, often boring convers...more
Although this book is designated as a continuation of McCrumb's rich "ballad" series, it departs in many ways from the other ballad novels. It is a rich and informative coup in historical writing, bringing dead history to life, as do McCrumb's other novels. However, it lacks the connectors between past and contemporary Appalachia that I see as so enriching in the previous novels. It also lacks that wonderful play on magic realism and infusing of the concept of the many ways of knowing that alway...more
Excellent fictionalized account of the Battle of King's Mountain near the North and South Carolina border in 1780. McCrumb tells the story from several viewpoints, including that of Colonel John Sevier, a militia leader from the northwestern part of North Carolina who helps form a rag tag army of volunteers to hunt down British commander Major Patrick Ferguson, who has been threatening local farmers who refuse to stay loyal to the crown. It is an interesting look at how the little army formed, c...more
Diana Gotsch
Early in this historical Fiction about the King's Mountain battle in the Revolutionary War A seasoned veteran tell a young boy that war is as much about walking and waiting and sleeping rough as it is adventure and excitement. That would be a fairly good description of this book.It is 326 pages in length. The battle the book is about starts near page 249 and is mostly over by page 272.The rest is mostly walking and waiting.

I usually like Sharyn McCrumb's ballad books. They are based on true sto...more
I liked this book, but I found it much harder to read than any Sharyn McCrumb book ever. Usually her books are first rate. This one was written in such a deliberately slow pace that I kept putting it down for a day or two, until my curiosity would build back up. And yet, I didn't want to leave this book unfinished. It does a great job of teaching you what the main character tells his teenaged sons: war is mostly tedium, with a few exciting minutes of battle between long stretches of little happe...more
McCrumb is one of my favorite authors, and I especially enjoy her Ballad novels. This book is about the American Revolution, and for me, it was heavy on war details and light on the interactions between the characters. Sharyn McCrumb always describes the Appalachian scenery very well, the dialog is perfect, and the character development leaves you feeling as if you really knew these people. Maybe I didn't enjoy it as much because it's about war, or maybe she held back a bit because she was writi...more
The Book Shelf
Really enjoyed the book. I learned a lot about the Battle of King's Mountain and the Over the Mountain Men. Ms. McCrumb always carries out really good research for her books and I find myself wanting to learn more about the subject. I can't wait for her next book and I hope she keeps the Ballad Series going.
I have always enjoyed Ms McCrumb's writing. She knows the people of Appalachia and writes about them with pride and warmth. I was especially interested in this book as one of my North Carolina ancestors was an Over Mountain man. I have always been proud of that line of my family but more so today after reading King's Mountain. As I read the book, I see many similarities between the Mountain Men of the 1700s and their progeny who live on in the mountains today! A fierce loyalty to the land and a...more
The facts in this Revolutionary War novel seem to be accurate. I had never heard of this battle, but it seems to have been a turning point in the Revolution. The characters and devices that McCrumb uses to move the story along are excellent. It's amazing to read how the "mountain men" used the skills which they gained by defending their homes and communities from Indians to defeat a regiment of British regulars at King's Mountain despite their being a rag-tag collection of men led by a "committe...more
I've read about 6 Sharyn McCrumb books, and I must say, this is my favorite one. I love history, and my husband's family comes from the part of NC where this is set, so I found it especially interesting.

It is definitely more history than fiction, but she writes it very well and she drew me into the characters and the battle. I had a hard time putting it down. Yes, it takes awhile to get to the actual battle, and the build up apparently was tedious to some readers, but, as another reviewer comme...more
I love Sharyn McCrumb. The woman could write a grocery list for a Johnson City trip, and I'd read it. Part of that is because my Daddy was from East Tennessee and these are his people and places. The other part is the sheer beauty and poetry of her work.

This book is different, more straight historical fiction than the others. A few of her previous novels, like those based on Frankie Silver and Tom Dooley, are more straightforward, but this is a recounting of an actual battle that's fairly well k...more
from McCrumb's website … King's Mountain (Sept. New York: St. Martin’s Press) tells the story of the Revolutionary War battle that changed the course of the war. Told from the points of view of Patriot leader John Sevier and Tory camp follower Virginia Sal, the novel brings to life the people and events in the southern front of the Revolution—a story largely ignored by the history books.

John Sevier had not taken much interest in the American Revolution. Homesteading in the Carolina mountains, Se...more
Maybe it's because I've been researching Southern Huguenot ancestors myself that I found this book so appropriate and timely. I've enjoyed Sharyl McCrumb's mysteries and other ballad novels. Every Tennessee schoolchild learns about John Sevier and his Bonny Kate, so I felt right at home learning about his participation with the Overmountain Men and other Revolutionary War militias heading to fight the Tories at King's Mountain. The author says this is a story that needed to be told, and I agree...more
Rita	 Marie
I have been reading Sharyn McCrumb's books for as long as she has been writing them. So I was delighted to receive an advance review copy of "King's Mountain" thru the FirstReads program, expected to enjoy the book, and did indeed.

The story could have been dull. After all, it focuses on a single battle in the American Revolution, and we all know how that turned out. No suspense here. But the author brings it to life with her portrayal of the characters involved. I particularly liked the alternat...more
I received this book through First Reads. It is a historical novel on the events leading up to the Battle of Kings Mountain, a battle Thomas Jefferson referred to as "the turning point in the American Revolution." All of the characters are based on actual participants. The main character is John Sevier (later the first governor of Tennessee). He is newly married and living in an area of North Carolina that is now east Tennessee. Sevier and the other militia leaders west of the mountains received...more
This novel gives an interesting backstory to the Southern Mountain culture that forms the backdrop to the Ballad series. The author makes the history come alive thru her descriptions of the places and lives of the participants, and there is an appealing touch of other-worldliness to the ambiguous but eventually accurate foreshadowing offered by one of the characters. I would have been more satisfied if this character would have been further developed and explained.

In a bit of what seems to be u...more
Cece R
I received this book in a *Giveaway* and was excited to read it. I was not familiar with Sharyn McCrumb but reviewed her bio and liked what kind of author she was. This book was written to tell a little known story about how frontiersmen standing up for their land and the battle that resulted from it. I enjoyed the historical piece to this novel, but felt I needed to know more about the characters. At times, I was introduced to too many characters at once and was getting them confused with each...more
I usually really love Sharyn McCrumb's ballad books-- a blend of Appalachian mountain tales with local history and a touch of ghost story. This one was based on a real historical event, and the authentic details and pacing made the story fall flat. McCrumb deftly evokes the time period and the rough frontier life of the settlers, trying to civilize the wilderness. But the book suffers from "I did my homework and you have to read all the interesting facts I discovered."
Debbi Dunn
Apr 03, 2014 Debbi Dunn rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Debbi by: Pat Smith
Shelves: book-club
Kings Mountain is just minutes away so this was a must read for my book club. Sharyn McCrumb took the facts and stories told of the battle fought there, the events leading up to it and created a story of what might have happened along the way. What were the emotions involved, what were people thinking...a wonderful idea to share an important event. I got a little lost in the details, there were almost too many for me. Once I figured out to skip a long a more quickly, the book became more interes...more
The history behind the story sounds fascinating but McCrumb fails to imbue the narrative with any sense of urgency or stakes. Everything about the muster for battle went so smoothly I practically feel asleep for the first three quarters of the book. No one makes mistakes, they manage to fob off the cowardly general on a fool's errand so they can run things their way. It may all be historically accurate but as presented by McCrumb it'll bore your socks off.

The other area that was weak was the ant...more
This was an interesting book, giving the perspective of Americans from the south during the revolutionary war. It did a great job of detailing the challenges of daily life on the frontier, in the towns, and on the march. I really found the characters believable and I wanted to know how they would fare in the hostilities. I think the author did a great job of weaving together lots of disparate views and put them in the hands of reliable narrators.
Debra Davis
Really good. This story of a lesser known battle of the revolution was grounded in history and gave a real insight into the lives of the main characters. John Sevier was a real mountain man. The story starts out with the siege of Fort Watauga by Indians incited and armed by the British during the American Revolution and follows him and his fellow commanders of the North Carolina militia men who defeat the British at King's Mountain. Excellent. Two of the men in the book eventually become the fir...more
Erika Schoeps
Disclaimer: I won this book in a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway.

61 pages in, and I decided that I just couldn't finish this one. I usually feel a large obligation to finish books that I won in a giveaway so that I can write the most concise review... but I couldn't do it. And it all boils down to one problem; The complete lack of ANY character development. The reader is thrown directly into the story, but then the characters are never given any life. The description of them doesn't shed light on...more
Jan 31, 2014 Susan marked it as abandoned
Could not get interested in this. I really enjoyed McCrumb's original ballad series with the familiar sheriff's department, the wonderful Nora Bonesteel, and the two story format with a story from the past shadowing the story from present day. Her recent novels are based on real characters, and I don't think she has the ability to stick to the historical facts and make the characters come alive.
Medrith Nuttle
I started reading Sharyn McCrumb's Ballad Novels last year. We went to a bluegrass festival and heard the Happy Valley Pals sing The Ballad of Frankie Silver, based on the true story of a young woman who killed her husband and buried him on the farm. All over the farm! I do love a murder ballad and this one was new to me, so I searched for it and found it on YouTube, with a link to Sharyn McCrumb's novel of the same name about the same event. These books are (surprise!) set in Appalachia with a...more
Susan Parks
I received an Advance Reading Copy of this book from Good Reads in return for a fair and honest review. Sharyn McCrumb has been a favorite author of mine for many years, through her Elizabeth McPhearson stories and her Ballad novels. I enjoy her writing style and her capacity for research, and this novel is no exception. A well written (though the ARC had a few typos and misspellings that I hope will be rectified in the final printing), engaging account of a little known aspect of the American R...more
I usually love Sharyn McCrumb, but I was disappointed by this book. The characters were not well developed and the dialogue was not realistic. She did a good job of setting the historical backdrop, but the focus seemed to be on the history lesson, not the telling of the tale (which she is so good at).
Well written story about Revolutionary War activity in North Carolina. I have enjoyed Sharyn McCrumb's other novels set in North Carolina. This novel is a bit different in that it is truly a story of the early frontier and the revolutionary war. Very well written, quite interesting. I received this copy to read and review. I have to say I prefer her other "ballad" novels that are more of a mystery. That's my preference though - I'm not big on historical fiction. For historical fiction then, this...more
Ann Freeman
Well-researched historically, but the characters didn't "come alive" to me. Maybe the author depended too much on dialogue. I also would have appreciated a map in the front. I know she was probably trying to avoid being too speculative about a past historical event.
Bonnie Novick
Historical Fiction based on a true event of the Revolutionary War and McCrumb's ancestors. The pace of the opening chapters reminded me of Cold Mountain. The pace picked up but I would only recommend this to avid Revolutionary War buffs.
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Sharyn McCrumb is an American writer whose books celebrate the history and folklore of Appalachia. Educated at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Virginia Tech, she has also taught Appalachian studies. She is married to David McCrumb, a corporate environmental director, and has two children, Laura and Spencer.
More about Sharyn McCrumb...
The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter (Ballad, #2) She Walks These Hills (Ballad, #3) The Ballad of Frankie Silver (Ballad, #5) The Rosewood Casket (Ballad, #4) If Ever I Return, Pretty Peggy-O (Ballad, #1)

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