New Novel Blends History with Purpose and Perspective

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"By the Breath of Their People" is a historical fiction novel that intertwines the lives of two men living on Delaware River Valley 300 years apart.

By the Breath of Their People by Gil Bean

By the Breath of Their People by Gil Bean

'By the Breath of Their People' is a story about vision, purpose, the link between people and the land, and connections that surpass time.

Gil Bean’s debut book is a meticulously researched work of fiction that supersedes genre. "By the Breath of Their People" intertwines the stories of two men living on the same land three centuries apart. One is a young Lenape Indian coming of age as his people are being driven from their native lands by European settlers; the other is a father and grandfather building a retreat for his family on a bluff high above the river. Though they come from exceedingly different backgrounds and times, the two men are connected by the land.

When life gave him the unexpected opportunity to spend an extended amount of time with his genealogist father, Gil Bean became fascinated with the history of the place where he grew up: the Delaware River Valley."By the Breath of Their People" is the culmination of Bean’s return to his own native land, which spawned countless hours of research, visits to remote church cemeteries, and drives along the roads that follow the path of the river.

"By the Breath of Their People" is a story about vision, purpose, the link between people and the land, and connections that surpass time. As one man struggles to find his destiny while his people are being exiled from their homeland and the other attempts to gain a sense of perspective after human remains are unearthed on his property, both question their purpose in the world and grapple with hope and longing. Combining the diverse perspectives of a young Lenape Indian and a modern-day man of means, "By the Breath of Their People" is a deeply felt history of the land and the people who call it home.

"By the Breath of Their People" is available everywhere books are sold.

About the Author
Gil Bean was born in Easton, Penn.—where much of "By the Breath of Their People" is set—and raised in nearby Phillipsburg, N.J. After graduating from Bowling Green State University in Ohio, he pursued a career in technology that took him to locations throughout the eastern half of the United States. He eventually returned to the Delaware River Valley, moving to the Philadelphia area in 1995. The father of four grown children, he currently lives in Mays Landing, N.J. with his wife, Deborah. "By the Breath of Their People" is Bean’s first novel.

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