Storming Heaven Essay

724 Words3 Pages
Author Denise Giardina has great narrative abilities. She can spin a wonderfully coercive and succulent story, as she has done in Storming Heaven. The novel has a beautifully fictitious plot that ties in perfectly with the events surrounding the coal wars and the Battle of Blair Mountain. She really gives the reader an idea of what it might have been like to be a West Virginian during this era. The plot is set up in a way that causes it to be quite interesting to even those who are most loathing of history. Giardina does a remarkable job of telling a compelling and gripping story, creating authentic and believable characters, and evoking moods that enhance the setting of the novel. The story is not told from solely one point of view as most novels are. In Giardina’s cogent novel there are four different narrators that each contribute their own perspective of the events surrounding the coal war and the Battle of Blair Mountain. The four narrators are; CJ Marcum, Rondal Lloyd, Carrie Bishop, and Rosa Angelelli. The chapters are unevenly distributed between these four characters, with Carrie narrating eleven, Rondal with six, and CJ and Rosa with four each. Giardina uses these characters to fill out the novel and really make it come to life. With the four different characters coming from different ages, ethnic groups, and genders, Giardina covers many perspectives through her authentic characters. CJ Marcum, a socialist, is the mayor of Annadel. CJ sympathizes with the miners even though he is an outsider because he does not share the miners’ way of life. CJ and Rondal share a family connection prior to the start of the novel. CJ takes Rondal in an attempt to save him from a life in the mines. Yet CJ’s efforts are for naught when Rondal decides that it is his responsibility to work in the mines. Rondal Lloyd then becomes a union organizer and works subversively to
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