News of the World

News of the World

A Novel

eBook - 2016
Average Rating:
Rate this:
National Book Award Finalist— FictionIn the aftermath of the Civil War, an aging itinerant news reader agrees to transport a young captive of the Kiowa back to her people in this exquisitely rendered, morally complex, multilayered novel of historical fiction from the author of Enemy Women that explores the boundaries of family, responsibility, honor, and trust.In the wake of the Civil War, Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd travels through northern Texas, giving live readings from newspapers to paying audiences hungry for news of the world. An elderly widower who has lived through three wars and fought in two of them, the captain enjoys his rootless, solitary existence.In Wichita Falls, he is offered a $50 gold piece to deliver a young orphan to her relatives in San Antonio. Four years earlier, a band of Kiowa raiders killed Johanna's parents and sister; sparing the little girl, they raised her as one of their own. Recently rescued by the U.S. army, the ten-year-old has once again been torn away from the only home she knows.Their 400-mile journey south through unsettled territory and unforgiving terrain proves difficult and at times dangerous. Johanna has forgotten the English language, tries to escape at every opportunity, throws away her shoes, and refuses to act "civilized." Yet as the miles pass, the two lonely survivors tentatively begin to trust each other, forming a bond that marks the difference between life and death in this treacherous land.Arriving in San Antonio, the reunion is neither happy nor welcome. The captain must hand Johanna over to an aunt and uncle she does not remember— strangers who regard her as an unwanted burden. A respectable man, Captain Kidd is faced with a terrible choice: abandon the girl to her fate or become— in the eyes of the law— a kidnapper himself.
Publisher: 2016.
ISBN: 9780062409225
Characteristics: 1 online resource

Related Resources


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Oct 01, 2017

Well written novel about intercultural challenges in the latter days of the western frontier. Timely connection to our current fractured society.

BostonPL_LauraB Sep 24, 2017

I liked this, but I didn't love it. That's the best description of this 3 star book. I bumped it up to a 3.5 for the emotions that it evoked in me with the last twenty pages, but otherwise it's a quiet, well-written novel, but it didn't "wow" me.

Aug 27, 2017

I loved this novel! There is so much to note: spare, poetic prose that shows without telling and brings characters and landscapes and history to life; a suspenseful journey; an unlikely buddy story; thoughtful consideration of the value of the printed word; thoughtful consideration of how traumatic life experiences are woven into a person's being; thoughtful consideration of cross-cultural communication.

Aug 17, 2017

Beautifully written with realistic characters. This novel explores issues that we still face today but with an historical context.

jyaremchuk Aug 10, 2017

A very well-written, sweet book.

scl_Cori Aug 04, 2017

I don't usually enjoy books where dialogue is not marked by quotations marks but it fits in with the style of this book. It is a slow, easy journey following a piece of the main character's life.

Aug 01, 2017

Heartening read. Intelligent, humorous dialogue.

Aug 01, 2017

This is such a unique story with an amazing amount of historical detail deftly woven into the narrative. There are strong, likeable characters who make you want to stay with them long after the book has ended. It is a wonderful book.

Jul 22, 2017

A simple, sweet story, well-told and engaging, and a fast read because you don't want to put it down. Whether it was a good idea to include a final chapter continuing the story beyond the predictable climax is debateable, but that's a minor point. Wonderful, too, it that it reminds us that 'literacy' of the natural world is a skill that most of us have lost.

inthestacks Jul 14, 2017

A Western set in post-Civil War Texas, an aging itinerant news reader agrees to transport eleven-year old Johanna, a Kiowa captive, back to her relatives 400 miles away. Johanna is an unwilling companion, but as they travel through barren territory and rough towns, their relationship builds, making this a sincere and tender tale.

View All Comments

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

Aug 27, 2017

infobetsy thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over

Aug 16, 2017

MIMS750 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Feb 03, 2017

feralranger thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 11 and 99


Add a Quote

cals_readers Feb 17, 2017

Some people were born unsupplied with a human conscience and those people needed killing.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Explore Further

Subject Headings


Find it at APL

To Top