The Shining Mountains, based on the true story of Christie’s Scottish forbears, begins in 1838, when a young Scotsman, Angus McDonald, lands at Hudson’s Bay. His journey takes him west to the unclaimed Oregon Country and a meeting with Catherine Baptiste, kin to Nez Perce chiefs. The world in which they fall in love and establish a family will soon be torn apart by competing claims: between British fur traders, American settlers, and the Native peoples who have lived for millennia in the valleys and plateaus of the Shining Mountains. In this moving family epic, the history of the American West, from the Rockies to the Pacific, is revealed: a history of blended cultures seeking allies, trading furs for guns and steel, and the violence of American settlement. Christie’s research and empathic touch deliver a brilliant tale.
Alix Christie is the direct descendant of Angus McDonald’s brother Duncan. Her debut novel, Gutenberg’s Apprentice, was published by Harper Books in 2014. For the past thirty years she has reported for newspapers in California and from Europe as a foreign correspondent, including for the Washington Post, the Guardian of London, the San Francisco Chronicle, and Salon.com. She currently reviews books and arts for The Economist. She lives in San Francisco, California.