Fire on the Mountain by Terry Bisson

Fire on the Mountain

Terry Bisson

What if abolitionist John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry had succeeded?
Imagine Afro American astronauts landing on Mars and a utopian Black nation called Nova Africa thriving in the Deep South! This book uses a blend of nineteenth century letters, ex-slave narratives and science fiction to turn US history upside down. It's a book that that keeps you greedily devouring the pages and leaves you hungry for more.


The railroad men and the soldier both said 'Kansas Brown' was behind the raid, as if his name had deep significance. White folks made much of Brown, though I had never heard his name, nor had any of the slaves until that day, when he became more famous among us than Moses at one stroke, and not as 'Kansas' or 'Osawatomie' Brown but as Shenandoah Brown. The railroad man told how the hotel had been torched and in the confusion Brown and his men had retreated across the Shenandoah into the Louden Heights, which is what we called the Blue Ridge there. They had fast-firing breech-loading Sharps rifles. Once in the laurel thickets who would follow them? 'Not the Virginny milishy,' the soldier said, laughing. 'They're at the tavern a-soaking their wounds in gov'mint whiskey.'

  • The Confessions of Nat Turner by William Styron
  • The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Books with similar mood

A Book of Science and Antiquities

Thomas Keneally

Anatomy of a Soldier

Harry Parker

Legend of a Suicide

David Vann

Falling Out of Cars

Jeff Noon

The Mariner's Star

Candida Clark

Death Is Hard Work

Khaled Khalifa


Matt Wesolowski


Mick Kitson

Captain of the Steppe

Oleg Pavlov

The World Unseen

Shamim Sarif

Double Vision

Tricia Sullivan


Alan Garner

Blood Data

Lury. Gibson

He Who Fears The Wolf

Karin Fossum

The Kills

Richard House

The Mussel Feast

Birgit Vanderbeke

The Warsaw Anagrams

Richard Zimler

The English Years

Norbert Gstein

Fragrant Harbour

John Lanchester

The Repentant Morning

Chris Paling

Do Not Say We Have Nothing

Madeleine Thien

The Man I Became

Peter Verhelst

Silent House

Orhan Pamuk

Life After Life

Kate Atkinson

Baghdad Fixer

Ilene Prusher

Jia: a Novel of North Korea

Hyejin Kim

This Blinding Absence of Light

Tahar Ben Jelloun

Double Vision

Pat Barker

The Diagnosis

Alan Lightman


Michael Frayn

The Fifth Woman

Henning Mankell

A History of Forgetting

Caroline Adderson

The Star Fraction

Ken Macleod

The Woman Who Knew Too Much

B Reece Johnson

Miss Smilla's Feeling For Snow

Peter Hoeg

Let It Be Morning

Sayed Kashua

Skin Lane

Neil Bartlett

Schopenhauer's Telescope

Gerard Donovan

The Forgetting Time

Sharon Guskin

In a Strange Room

Damon Galgut

Three Day Road

Joseph Boyden


Kunal Basu

Moses, Citizen and Me

Delia Jarrett-Macauley

We Need to Talk About Kevin

Lionel Shriver

The Internationals

Sarah May


Eva-Marie Liffner

Other People's Fathers

Romana Petri

Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead

Olga Tokarczuk

In the Distance

Hernan Diaz