Blood and Thunder - Hampton Sides

Blood and Thunder

By Hampton Sides

  • Release Date: 2007-10-09
  • Genre: United States
Score: 4.5
From 94 Ratings


A magnificent 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.


  • 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.