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The Subject:

This historical novel tells highly dramatic and compelling parallel stories of the Northern Cheyenne great chief, Morning Star, and his great grandson, Ted Rising Sun, a decorated Korean War veteran.  Both men were visionaries, warriors, husbands, fathers, and great leaders for the Northern Cheyenne.  Their lives are interwoven as the epic saga unfolds across the Great Plains from the Oklahoma Territories to what is now Nebraska, and from the Lame Deer Reservation in Montana to the halls of Congress in Washington, DC.

The Parallel Stories:

In the late 19th century, as white men were discovering the unspoiled America found west of the Mississippi, Morning Star realized that unless his people were to adapt to the ways of this new world, they would be eradicated from the earth.  Through an ordeal few could survive the great leader saved his people from extinction and gained the Northern Cheyenne Tribal Reservation in Lame Deer, Montana, as the permanent home to his nation.  Every element of nature, from the parched sun-drenched earth of the southwest to the blizzards of the north, plus disease and famine along with the barbarous treatment at the hands of those government authorities charged with the containment of the Cheyenne people, combined in the form of a monumental test of the vision and the resolve of Morning Star, the greatest leader of the Cheyenne.

In the second half of the 20th century, when minorities in this country began their quest for equality, cultural recognition, and liberty, many of them spoke out in anger at the government.  Ted Rising Sun realized to continue to wallow in the pain of the past was self-destructive.  Rather, he could see the education of Cheyenne children, as well as all Indian children, was the key to overcoming the poverty and unemployment that has plagued Native Americans since the establishment of the reservation system.  He acted on his belief taking his fight all the way to the floor of the United States Senate.

In 2018 "Cheyenne Rising Sun" was selected for inclusion in the archives of the American Philosophical Society located in Philadelphia.

Founded in 1743 by Benjamin Franklin, the American Philosophical Society is the first learned society in the United States. For over 250 years, the Society has played an important role in American cultural and intellectual life. Until the mid-nineteenth century, the Society fulfilled the role of a national academy of science, national library and museum, and even patent office. Early members of the Society included Thomas Jefferson, David Rittenhouse, Benjamin Rush, Stephen Peter Du Ponceau, George Washington, and many other figures prominent in American history.

The Archives of the American Philosophical Society consists of 192.25 linear feet of material, organized into thirteen record groups dating back to 1743. The Society's archives extensively documents not only the organization's historical development but also its role in American history and the history of science and technology.

Author John Kuri and Elixir Entertainment are honored to know the historical novel is included in the archives of the American Philosophical Society.

TAKIN' IT BACK, hardcover


The Novel

Takin' It Back, previewed in June 2005 at Book Expo America in NYC and its hardcover edition was released in September of that year. Shaquille O'Neal and the NBA have endorsed the book along with Hall of Famer Bill Walton, and the Police Activities League.

A CBS one-hour Sports Spectacular Pride, Passion, and Power introduced John Kuri and promoted the novel while presenting a segment about Anita Ortega. She is an NCAA, UCLA Hall of Fame basketball player, then she was the Commanding Officer of the Los Angeles Police Department's Hollenbeck Division, and whose inspiring character is a part of this story.

Shaquille O'Neal wrote: "This book speaks to all inner-city teens regardless of color, and brings honor to thousands of mentors, many off-duty police officers who selflessly give guidance to hundreds of thousands of our at-risk kids, daily."

Bill Walton wrote: "A Slam-dunk. The game is the metaphor to life in this compelling story. The players: Five racially diverse inner-city at-risk teens. The coaches: Two off-duty cops. The result: Adults mentor teens and together they experience the power of teamwork, the joy of victory, and value of friendship."

Pictured here - author John Kuri with NBA star Jerome Kersey and Douglas Gorman - the man who introduced John to both Jerome and this book's publisher, James Riordan of
Seven Locks Press.