By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
The author of famous revenge tale “The Revenant” is preparing to release a novel regarding a little-known massacre that took place in Wyoming in the 1800s.
Michael Punke’s latest book “Ridgeline,” expected to hit shelves June 1, focuses on a clash between Native Americans and white settlers in the Powder River Valley in 1866. While the book is technically fictional, it is based on real people and events, much like “The Revenant.”
The book revolves around Col. Henry Carrington’s arrival in Wyoming to lead the U.S. Army in defending the opening of a new road for gold miners and settlers.
Carrington also intended to build a fort in the middle of critical hunting grounds for the Lakota, a plan that propelled the Native Americans and Carrington’s soldiers into a battle that lasted over the fall and winter.
Reviews for the book so far have praised it for its vivid descriptions and fast-paced narrative. If you’re curious, the book is just under 390 pages in length.
Punke, now a Montana resident, is a Torrington native who spent many summers as a teenager working as a “living history interpreter” at the Fort Laramie National Historic Site.
Punke also formerly served as the U.S. Ambassador to the World Trade Organization in Switzerland under President Barack Obama.