Chariot on the Mountain by Jack Ford

Chariot on the Mountain

"Once old Mastuh be dead, you be workin' in the fields just like the rest of 'em. That day comin' soon." Two decades before the Civil War, a middle-class farmer named Samuel Maddox lies on his deathbed. Elsewhere in his Virginia home, a young woman named Kitty knows her life is about to change. She is one of the Maddox family's slaves--and Samuel's biological daughter. When Samuel's wife, Mary, inherits her husband's property, she will own Kitty ...

Details Chariot on the Mountain

TitleChariot on the Mountain
Release DateJul 31st, 2018
PublisherKensington Publishing Corporation
GenreHistorical, Historical Fiction, Fiction, Adult

Reviews Chariot on the Mountain

  • Angela M
    4.5 stars I’ve mentioned before in my reviews about how much I enjoy knowing the inspiration for a story and Jack Ford did not disappoint me as he wonderfully describes in his note at the end of this book how Kitty Payne’s story first came to him. Ford’s affinity for courthouses is natural given his background and long career in law and it was while visiting a courthouse from the 1800’s in a small village in Virginia that he first discove...
  • Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
    4 brilliant stars to Chariot on the Mountain! ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ I first heard about this book on The View, as it was a pick from one of the hosts for summer reading. Then, I saw a highly rated review from Angela M. and knew I needed to pick this one up, too. Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres.Just prior to the Civil War, a farmer in Virginia named Samuel Maddox passes away, leaving his wife owning his property, including his slave, Kit...
  • Jen
    The chase is on.What a fabulous read to close out the year. My first Ford - and not the car- so I will be inclined to try another.Kitty is a mulatto skinned slave on the run With her mistress who is trying to repent for the wrongs of having slaves and honouring her deceased husband’s last wish: to free Kitty and her children.Except she has a deceitful nephew who demands a share of the estate and wants to trade in Kitty and her kids for some col...
  • Jenny
    Once in awhile, you read a book that you fall in love with. It becomes your "go-to or must-read" recommendation and the one that you tell all your friends to read. It is definitely your book club pick that month. We've all read those books and each year begins the search for another one,But how about a book that you finish reading and get to say that my life is better or richer for having read it. That list is a lot smaller and hard to come by.Ch...
  • Sharon Metcalf
    Firstly my sincere thanks to Kensington Books and NetGalley for the opportunity of reading the remarkable Chariot on the Mountain by Jack Ford.    Set on  a farm in Rappahannock County, Virginia, Samuel Maddox has a dying wish.     On his deathbed he asks his wife Mary to consider setting free Kitty, one of their female slaves and her three small children.    Initially this request presents Mary with a personal, social and moral dilemm...
  • Libby
    Based on the true story of Kitty Payne, this story takes place 20 years before the Civil War. When Samuel Maddox dies, he leaves his estate to his wife, Mary. All Samuel's slaves are now Mary's property. But Samuel's last death bed request was that Mary free Kitty and her three children. Kitty is Samuel's biological child, a child that came about because of Samuel's relationship with a slave woman, a woman that Samuel later sold, much to Mary's r...
  • Bernadette
    Chariot on the Mountain tells a fictionalized version of the true story of Kitty Payne, born into slavery, the daughter of a slave and slave owner. On the slave owner’s deathbed, he makes his wife, Mary promise to free Kitty and the children. Mary fully plans to comply with her husband’s wishes until a greedy nephew comes into the picture, contesting the will so that she cannot dispose of any “property” until the case is settled. Of cours...
  • Michelle
    Chariot on the Mountain is inspired by the life of Kitty Payne. Born a slave near Huntly Virginia, she was the daughter of her master, Samuel Maddox. Six years after his death his widow Mary chose to emancipate Kitty and her four children. This decision alone was highly unusual for that time. But to add more fuel to the fire that was already kindling, Mary chose to move with Kitty's family to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. This incited Samuel's nephew...
  • Karen
    Chariot on the Mountain by Jack FordI really loved the narrative and this author's style of storytelling that from the very first page I was hooked and couldn't put this historical work down. The author Jack Ford is talented in not just as a writer but was a prosecutor, trial lawyer, but also a legal journalist. While visiting an 1830's era courthouse that still functions today as the Rappahannock County courtroom where the setting in Virginia, w...
  • Tia
    Based on little-known true events, this astonishing account from Emmy and Peabody Award-winning journalist Jack Ford vividly recreates a treacherous journey toward freedom, a time when the traditions of the Old South still thrived—and is a testament to determination, friendship, and courage . . . from the synopsis Even though, this book is based upon little-known true events, from the start, it seemed like a FANTASTICAL story. I thought, in tim...
  • KayG
    This was a compelling story of a young slave who was determined that she not be separated from her three children as she had been from her mother. Kitty was a real person, and the author has made her story known through fiction based on research. I particularly was interested in the Underground Railroad, and through Kitty’s eyes, I saw how it worked. Bless the Quakers for loving those in such danger, and at risk to themselves. Kitty’s story d...
  • Jennifer Anderson
    CHARIOT ON THE MOUNTAIN is a fictional story based on the real life of Kitty Payne who was a young, multiracial, freed slave woman who had to fight for her rights in American court before the Civil War years. The story goes through the ins and outs of plantation and farm lives of slaves in Virginia in the early 1800's. Kitty's own mother had been sold away from her when she was very small and so she was determined this wouldn't happen to her thre...
  • Deanne Patterson
    This awesome book is based upon factual events. How would you feel if you were born a slave woman and had been one your whole life? Upon your master's death your mistress set you free and traveled with you and your 3 children to Pennsylvania, a free state. Upon reaching Pennsylvania while in a "safe house" with your children a horrifying thing happened to you. You were kidnapped by your mistresse's nephew and dragged back to Virginia, a slave sta...
  • Theresa
    4 1/2 stars but I'm rounding up to 5. The main reason for the deduction of stars is that the story was slow in some places and a bit repetitive at times. Full review to come if life ever slows down enough to sit down and write.
  • Patricia Romero
    Kitty's story takes place a about 20 years before the war between the states. Kitty was a real person and this story is full of historical information with some fictional conversations that may have taken place. The facts are documented very well and Mr. Ford has done a masterful job of weaving them into a believable story.Set in Virginia, Kitty is the daughter of her master and a slave woman. She has been raised in the house, educated and allowe...
  • Mary
    This was a very good book. The story is based on the real life of Kitty Payne, a woman born into slavery in 1816, the author saw a historical plaque about Kitty and found his next story. I hard a hard time starting the story because it starts with the capturing of Kitty and her 3children in Pennsylvania. I’m glad I kept on reading!
  • Lenore Riegel
    There are some hints of plot in this review, but I do not think they will spoil the excitement of this book at all. This is the third - and best - Jack Ford historical novel I have read. It is amazing to me how he finds amazing historic trials and turns them into literary gold.I was stunned to learn through reading Chariot on the Mountain that this fierce young woman challenged a white slaver in court - years before the Civil War. To find out how...
  • Corine
    The best part of this book was the ending segment. I had a difficult time with the pacing and long winded descriptions. This is a great story, but the author fails to deliver it in an emotionally fitting, gripping way.
  • Kathryn
    Mr. Ford makes his living talking, he is a frequent commentator on all the major networks as well as teaches legal seminars at Yale and other institutions. He did practice law within the court system. This background and a love for history led him to discover the story of Kitty Payne, who was the daughter of her master and when he passed, the tremendous efforts that his wife, Mary took to free her (manumission).This was an interesting story, well...
  • Nancy
    The true story it's based on is fascinating, but the book itself lacks anything for the reader to hold onto. The dialogue is forced and most of it's summary/theatrical reenactment of something that happened a chapter ago. The "chapters" are 2-3 pages each, which does move the story along, but chops up the action in a way that makes it hard to care about any of the characters.
  • Claire
    The synopsis provided really covers the whole plot, but what this book boils down to are Mary Maddox’s efforts to free Kitty and her children, first physically and then legally. In the first half especially, there is a great deal of emphasis on Mary’s sacrifices. This immediately bothered me, because look, I just don’t want to read a redemption story about a slave-owning, white widow. We are not talking about an abolitionist. We are talking...
  • Jo
    Great Read! I finished this book in two days, as I could not put it down. Based on a true story of one woman's courage and determination to gain her freedom, she and her three small children travel the Underground Railroad. They are chased, hunted, beaten, jailed and helped by a surprising list of Southern society, Quakers and other slaves. The author's notes at the end of the book led to the confirmation that while this book is Historical Fictio...
  • Marquette
    It took me two months to finish this book 😩 so needless to say I didn’t exactly find the book that good. The author’s note at the end was actually more interesting than the book. Historical fiction is my fav and I was really looking forward to reading this (true story of a slave who was freed by her owner and then used the Underground Railroad to make her way to freedom only to be kidnapped and brought back to slavery where she then sued h...
  • Krista
    This book is trying to tell a story of one slave's journey to freedom in the middle 1800's Virginia, but it is certainly more fiction than realistic. Not only would most of the experiences that Kitty had, save for the brutality and beatings she endured, not have happened to a slave (a slave suing a white man, a white slave holder walking her own slave to freedom, a southern judge trying to secure said slave's freedom), but the entire Underground ...
  • Mary Cullen
    4.5 stars. This is a very good historical fiction based on events occurring twenty years before the Civil War. It is a very quick read - I finished it on a short flight - but very interesting and keeps you turning the pages. Highly recommend to lovers of historical fiction.
  • Dlsaint
    This book just didn’t grab me. Based on such good reviews I thought it would be better. I can’t put my finger on what was wrong with it but didn’t much like it
  • Steven Zacharius
    Wonderful book based on a little known slave and deals with her being emancipated and her journey to freedom via the underground railroad.
  • Amanda
    The history is a truly remarkable story, but Ford was not the man to tell it.
  • MaryKaye
    I have always liked reading pre Civil War and Civil War novels and Chariot on the Mountain was no exception. It tells the story of Kitty, a slave, and how it came about that she took a white man to court. This of course, was unheard of in Virginia at the time. This book is fiction, but the story is based on true events. and many actual events as can be documented. I found this book extremely interesting and enjoyed it very much.I received this bo...
  • Lisa N
    Was surprised when I got to the end of this book to find out it was written by a journalist because the writing style is what I classify as light and fluffy. I did not feel the excitement of a treacherous journey or the sensational trial that was promised in the book description. It really had no depth to it and the dialogue was a little soap oper-ish. This would be for those who prefer a more simple read.