A people crushed by colonial forces . . .
Batoche is the promised land. In 1884, the buffalo have disappeared from the plains, and J.A. Macdonald needs the fertile land along the Saskatchewan River for European settlers. But this raw wilderness has long been claimed by the Métis.
A rebel messiah . . .
They have invited Louis Riel, the exiled rebel leader, to fight for their farms, unaware that he considers them one of the lost tribes of Israel, and he the prophet David meant to save them from tyranny.
A woman with a death sentence over her head . . .
The pious women of Batoche scorn abused wife and mother Josette Lavoie for daring to question the church and taking drastic measures to avoid death by pregnancy. When Riel arrives, he discovers that she is the granddaughter of his most valued ally, Chief Big Bear, and makes her his disciple. But there’s a price: she must hide the truths that their new leader spent two years in an insane asylum and has plans for the Métis to leave their beloved Roman Catholic religion for his own Apostolic Church of the New World.
A daughter with a terrible secret . . .
Torn by the local priest’s demands that she spy on Riel, and the rebel leaders’ increasing paranoia, Josette is oblivious to signs that her daughter has fallen victim to devastating acts.
An epic showdown . . .
Josette and Gabriel Dumont draw closer to one another in their struggle to manage Riel, who is determined that he will meet the Dominion army only in Batoche, the City of God. When General Middleton and his soldiers storm their rifle pits, the Métis question the man with the courage to rise against the might of a general obsessed with avoiding the same mistakes Custer made at the Little Bighorn. Is Riel God’s instrument or a mad saint?
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