Charles Frazier had a tough act to follow. His first novel, Cold Mountain, was both a literary and a popular sensation. It has sold more than 4 million copies, inspired a major Hollywood film, and won the National Book Award.
During his research for that 1997 novel, Frazier came across a reference to a 90-year-old white man who spoke nothing but Cherokee during the final weeks of his life. This snapshot of a life captured Frazier’s imagination and led him to write Thirteen Moons, a portrait of Will Cooper—indentured orphan, frontier lawyer and “White Chief” of the Cherokee of western North Carolina.
Despite many similarities to the earlier book, Thirteen Moons is considerably bleaker than its predecessor. The story of Will Cooper is an elegy of loss imbued with the tragic awareness that everything we cherish ultimately slips through our fingers.