4 out of 4 stars
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“You have to know the past to understand the present.” The significance of this quote to recognizing the root cause of anything cannot be overemphasized, and in Massacre Rocks: A Campaign of Deception, Dave Lundgren seems to be in complete agreement.
Home-grown terrorism and racially-motivated terrorism have been issues in the United States for over a century now. In an attempt to uncover the reason for the terrorism that has plagued the United States, Dave tells the story of Massacre Rocks State Park, Idaho, involving the wrongful portrayal of Native Indians as murderers and thieves by Americans, known as Mormons, dressed as red-faced Indians. The Mormons' actions of murdering and stealing from emigrants eventually led to a retaliation by the federal army in the Bear River Massacre, in 1863, where over 250 innocent people of the Shoshone Tribe were murdered. The author attempts to show us how these events have been used as a blueprint for the terrorism that occurs today.
Massacre Rocks deserves a perfect rating of 4 out of 4 from me. This rating is mostly influenced by the overall execution of the book, the well-researched nature of the book, and the author's ability to pass his points across in an orderly and concise fashion.
The book comes across as a genuine attempt to expose the systemic suppression of historical records that is still prevalent in society today. The author's attempt felt genuine because he employed an objective tone by dishing out information in an unbiased way. I could see how religion and the media, through the Mormon Church and the Deseret News Network, were exploited in passing false information to the public. At this point, the comparison between historical and modern-day events started to become clearer to me. Historians, like Brigham D. Madsen, are also exposed following the roles they played in supporting the Mormon Church's false version of events.
I also liked that significant maps and pictures supporting the author's statements were included in the book, as they helped enhance my understanding of the story. The absence of any grammatical and typographical errors means that a fantastic job was done in editing Massacre Rocks. This also made the book easy to read and understand.
Overall, Massacre Rocks is an educational and engaging piece of historical nonfiction. It brings a relevant discussion in modern-day society to light in a detailed way. There was absolutely nothing I disliked about this book. I would recommend Massacre Rocks to fans of historical nonfiction. The book is devoid of profanity. Murder and rape are mentioned in some parts of the book, but they are not described in detail. So, this book is suitable for a younger audience.
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