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Illustrated with maps and rare old sketches and photographs, The Cross in the Sand is as exciting and easy to read as a novel. The book’s literary grace is matched by its historical authenticity, because Gannon has used all available manuscripts as well as the best secondary sources of this and past centuries.
Until he wrote this memoir--recollections from his childhood in the twenties that merge with reflections on a way of life dying at the hands of progress in the nineties--Totch had never read a book in his life. Still, his writing conveys the tension he experienced from trying to live off the land and within the laws of the land.