I read Empire of the Summer Moon when I was teaching the SEAL Junior Officer Training course in 2013 near the end of my time in uniform and when I was putting together my professional reading list for the Naval Special Warfare Center. This book immediately made the list. I’d read Black Elk Speaks by John G. Neihardt and Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee Brown in high school because I was extremely interested in those who had inhabited the continent before the arrival of Europeans, how they lived, survived, hunted and fought. I was familiar with the story of Cynthia Ann Parker, kidnapped by Comanches in 1836 and assimilated into the tribe. She would marry a Comanche War Chief. Their son would become the last War Chief of the Comanches. Empire of the Summer Moon is the true story of battles, torture, culture, adaptation, leadership, westward expansion and a people whose martial prowess is forever cemented in history.