LAKE TRAVIS READS "Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen" by Sarah Bird Popular cultural education program features bestselling, award-winning author Now entering its twelfth year, LAKE TRAVIS READS 2019 will feature the new book by acclaimed Austin author Sarah Bird, "Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen." The historical novel tells the story of Cathy Williams, the only female soldier to serve with the Buffalo Soldiers, based on the scant historical records that still exist. “I am a daughter of a daughter of a queen and my mama never let me forget it,” Cathy tells the reader in the first line of the book. Her grandmother was a warrior queen in Africa, and Cathy never sees herself as a slave but rather as a captive. She grew up in slavery on a Missouri plantation before the Union army took her away to work as a cook. Later she disguised herself as a man named William Cathay and joined the storied Buffalo Soldiers, African-Americans in the U.S. Army who protected settlers and fought off Native Americans after the Civil War ended. “Sarah Bird takes a few scant lines from history–fragments, really, the barest of bones that have come down to us of Cathy Williams, slave, freedwoman, U.S. Calvary trooper–and spins from them this magnificent imagining of a flesh-and-blood, heart-and-soul woman who fears and loves and wants and hurts just as fiercely as any of us. This wonderful novel is as rich in the telling as Thomas Berger’s Little Big Man and Larry McMurtry’s Lonesome Dove, but Bird is breaking new ground, staking out a whole different territory. Cathy Williams, a black woman in history; what’s been lost to time and neglect is surely regained in good measure by this brilliant, powerful novel.” —Ben Fountain, author of Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. Bird is well-known to Austin audiences as a delightful speaker in addition to being a prolific author. She is the author of ten novels, including The Gap Year, Above the East China Sea, and The Yokota Officers Club, as well as 2016’s A Love Letter to Texas Women, her hilarious valentine to Texas women she has known. The community is invited to hear Bird speak at the 2019 LAKE TRAVIS READS “Evening with the Author” on Tuesday, February 5, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. at the Lake Travis Community Library, located at 1938 Lohmans Crossing in Lakeway. The event is free and open to the public. Copies of the book will be available for purchase and signing. LAKE TRAVIS READS is a “One Book, One Community” program co-sponsored by Bee Cave Public Library, Lake Travis Community Library, and Spicewood Community Library that encourages the community to read the featured title and then meet the author at a special evening event. Copies of the featured book are available at the libraries for checkout in a variety of formats including print, audio, and digital. For more information, visit www.laketravisreads.org or any of the participating libraries.