STARRED REVIEW
May 2016

The mystery of Roanoke

By Ed Gray
One of the great mysteries of the early years of North America’s settlement by Europeans is the lost Roanoke colony. In 1587, 118 people, including children, settled there but later disappeared without a trace. Just a few cryptic clues remained that hinted at their possible fate. What drove them from their settlement? Illness? Native attack? Internal strife?
Share this Article:

One of the great mysteries of the early years of North America’s settlement by Europeans is the lost Roanoke colony. In 1587, 118 people, including children, settled there but later disappeared without a trace. Just a few cryptic clues remained that hinted at their possible fate. What drove them from their settlement? Illness? Native attack? Internal strife?

Essayist and founding editor of Gray’s Sporting Journal Ed Gray dreams up a few possible answers in his first novel, Left in the Wind: The Roanoke Journal of Emme Merrimoth. Gray chooses Emme, an actual Roanoke colonist, as the narrator for his tale. Through her eyes, we experience the new colonists’ distress as they make the difficult crossing from England, their struggle to establish a new home in the wilderness of North Carolina, the dramas and jealousies between families and the disintegration of a community. 

Is Gray correct in his explanation of Roanoke’s demise? It’s impossible to say, but his idea is as good as any. Part historical novel, part detective story, Left in the Wind is filled with fascinating details of colonial settlement life and Native-American culture. It’s a gripping story that readers will have trouble putting down.

 

This article was originally published in the May 2016 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

Trending Reviews

Get the Book

Left in the Wind

Left in the Wind

By Ed Gray
Pegasus
ISBN 9781681771267

Sign Up

Stay on top of new releases: Sign up for our enewsletters to receive reading recommendations in your favorite genres.

Sign Up

Sign up to receive reading recommendations in your favorite genres!