Blood and Thunder - Hampton Sides

Blood and Thunder

By Hampton Sides

  • Release Date: 2006-10-03
  • Genre: U.S. History
Score: 4.5
From 360 Ratings


NATIONAL BESTSELLER From the author of Ghost Soldiers comes an eye-opening history of the American conquest of the West—"a story full of authority and color, truth and prophecy" (The New York Times Book Review).

In the summer of 1846, the Army of the West marched through Santa Fe, en route to invade and occupy the Western territories claimed by Mexico. Fueled by the new ideology of “Manifest Destiny,” this land grab would lead to a decades-long battle between the United States and the Navajos, the fiercely resistant rulers of a huge swath of mountainous desert wilderness.

At the center of this sweeping tale is Kit Carson, the trapper, scout, and soldier whose adventures made him a legend. Sides shows us how this illiterate mountain man understood and respected the Western tribes better than any other American, yet willingly followed orders that would ultimately devastate the Navajo nation. Rich in detail and spanning more than three decades, this is an essential addition to our understanding of how the West was really won.


  • Great book!

    By Best Dad Ever :)
    Glad I read it. Wonderful intertwining of Manifest Destiny, Native American and Mexican peoples and Kit Carson - compassionately told! Beginning and end were hard to put down. Some of the army details in the middle were a little dry and I thought could have been condensed. Loved it though and thankful to understand these stories better.
  • Spectacular!

    By JDW8848
    This is an extremely well researched and written account. The descriptions put the reader in the story and leave lasting memories. 5/5
  • Simply fantastic

    By J. Kailes
    If you like American history, read this book! A true masterpiece
  • Blood and Thunder

    By taosgolfman
    One of the best true stories of the American west ever written. This book should be made into a movie starring Matthew McConaughey as Kit Carson. This is one of the original real life hero’s that penned the Indiana Jones tales of the late 1800s. also provides a true look at the struggles between the Western expansion and the Native Americans during the time. It’s a major page turner.
  • Blood and Thunder

    By Jjsopa
    The best book about the west in the early to mid 1800's I have read.
  • Great Book - Terrible Edition

    By BPBear
    This is a very well-told biography of Kit Carson, but it is an even better story of the New Mexico Territory and it's complex history during the 19th century. The interplay of cultural narrative, territorial conquest, and adventure story makes for absorbing reading. The treatment of Native Americans is balanced, with plenty of blame to go around. The downside of this edition is that the iBooks version is sold without the maps of the print edition. It is unconscionable for Apple to charge what it does for this book and not provide the maps. This story - indeed any such history - cannot be understood properly without it's geographical context, and this comes only with maps. Until Apple corrects this sordid practice of selling fatally incomplete editions, I shall never purchase another iBook of any genre.