Try researching a topic as benign as uncovering original stories from early Americans who lived in North America during the pre-colonial era. The narratives are sparse and that which is available is widely debated and challenged by later accounts.
The dress, the customs, language, beliefs, lifestyles and even innocuous storytelling among those who couldn’t read and write are today lost. Voices of early people have become invisible, all but impossible to reconstruct because their stories were not preserved.
This is one of the most durable qualities of storytelling preserved today in print books and more specifically, the historic novel Puzzles by Terri E. Lyons.
Fans of historical fiction will fall for this grappling story set in 1959, Satterfield County, Virginia. Lyons takes readers back to a time and country filled with brilliant blossoms and rich farmland where tobacco, corn and dark leafy greens populated in neat rows blighting a horizontal nebulous horizon. Meadowlark and Orioles share the skies with finch and sparrows, and dirt roads lined with popular trees are as peaceful as a lazy stream. Orange Blossom, the locomotive, on the hour, day and night, pierce the air with its tangy whistle...all sounds and sights of a familiar promising future, until the summer of 1959, when a menace moved into town.
These are everyday people set in a time, who could have been any one of us, cogently bringing readers into their homes and lives as they come together to face the challenges present in this historical time capsule. Attitudes, customs, scenery, lifestyle are vibrantly told, and visible in this rich version of storytelling. There simply is nothing to refute.