TEARS OF THE MOUNTAIN
Tears of the Mountain chronicles a single day in one man’s life—July 4, 1876—along with a series of flashbacks that all lead up to an eventful Centennial Independence Day celebration in Sonoma, California. Over the course of this surprisingly pivotal moment in his life, Jeremiah McKinley prepares for the celebration and for a reunion with old friends and family.
However, as he reflects on past love, the hazardous pioneer journey of his youth across the continent from Missouri, and the many violent conflicts of the West, voices of the long dead come to him, while old wounds and enmities resurface, threatening everything he holds dear. Furthermore, a series of mysterious notes and messages follow him throughout the day. When a visiting senator is found dead, suspicion leads to his old mentor, Professor Applewood, whose sudden disappearance from the festivities makes McKinley a suspected accessory to a fugitive.
John Addiego fills this tale of America’s coming of age with wit and lively prose, seamlessly moving back and forth through time in a novel that recognizes both our darker side and our promise.
$25.95 / $29.95 CAN | Fiction Hardcover | 6x9 | 400 pages
ISBN: 978-1-60953-006-8 | Carton Quantity: 20
Thirty-one years after the farm’s christening, at the beginning of this day, the nation’s one hundredth birthday, McKinley’s forty-six-year-old son, Jeremiah, lay in the cabin at Fin Hollow Glen, snuffling through the brush of a horseshoe mustache and dreaming. And in the dream Mr. Jeremiah McKinley stepped cautiously from brilliant California sunlight into the dark sanctuary of the Mission San Francisco Solano de Sonoma. He inhaled the dank, sepulchral lime and waited for his eyes to adjust. Beneath the life-sized statues of Joseph and Mary at the ornate altar there was an absurd hole in the floor, which in the logic of dreams became an open trapdoor and a stairway.
He descended a polished mahogany staircase to a green door that opened into the vestibule of a saloon, where voices and clinking glasses resounded behind a frosted window. Pushing aside a thick purple curtain redolent of tobacco smoke, he found himself in a perfumed closet with a seat or bed, little more than a shelf wedged into the recess of a cold adobe wall. Through a tiny window of metal grating he saw his first wife, Teresa, her oval face and dark eyes framed by a blue rebozo. She let the head scarf drop and shook her long hair loose. Her shoulders were bare. “I want to confess,” she said in Spanish, breathlessly. “I want forgiveness.” “I already forgave you, Teresa,” he said, “a long time ago.”
“Para Miguel, también?”
She spoke rapid Spanish now, in a whisper, and he could understand only a small part of it, something about giving light. Somehow she was beside him, kneeling on a small bed in a room that smelled of sex, fingering her rosary as she whispered, and as they knelt together to pray for their son, with her hip pressed against his, he felt a coarse rope against his throat. A crowd of men lifted him into the air, the noose tightened, and he awoke gasping and in a sweat, under his father’s redwood bark–slab roof, curled behind his second wife, Lucinda.