ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

PUHA by J. Bradley Van Tighem

Updated on August 23, 2017
misty103 profile image

Misty103 is a pen name for a psychology graduate who enjoys exploring and discovering new worlds and stories within the pages of a good book

Puha (Master of the Wild Book 1) by J. Bradley Van Tighem is a historical literacy fiction novel that follows the life of a twelve-year-old boy known as Many Wolves who was adopted by Lipan Apaches, after his white parents were killed by the Nokoni Comanche band. Laughing Crow is the leader of the people who killed Many Wolves’ parents and now demands that the boy be handed over in return for peace. Many Wolves flees the village and spends the next five years learning to live and survive on his own with his trained wolf hawks. Everything changes when a Lipan arrow kills Laughing Crow’s son. Does Many Wolves have what it takes to protect his village from the angry vengeance of those that killed his parents or will he die alongside those that adopted him?

Puha (Master of the Wild Book 1) by J. Bradley Van Tighem was a very well-written book that was the perfect blend of historical facts and fictional characters. Many Wolves quickly became my favorite character with how he possessed spiritual powers that allowed him to walk with the spirits of his animals. I liked the fact that Many Wolves spent five years learning to survive with only animals for assistance as it made it so much more realistic when he returned to help his village. Instead of a scared twelve year old boy facing his parents’ killers it was instead a young man who was hardened by his seclusion in the wild who had the skills need to not only face that Nokoni Comanche band, but to survive such an encounter. Overall I really enjoyed reading this book and I would be very interested in reading the rest of the series!


Interview with J. Bradley Van Tighem

What inspired you to write this book?

I have always had a keen interest in Native American cultures and have wondered what it would have been like to live in an era when these cultures thrived. Also, I have a deep love for nature and a special interest in birds of prey, in particular. With my stories, I have combined all of this subject matter to build a world that is rich and believable, with the addition of a couple of 'mystical' elements to broaden the story line.
Did you ever consider writing yourself into your book? If yes did you and if no why did you refrain?
No. However, my main character, Many Wolves, is in some ways a fictional representation of myself.
Which part was the hardest for you to write and why?

The biggest challenge for me was trying to make the setting of my story as historically accurate as possible.Though the characters are all fictional, the world around them is based on my research of Texas and the indigenous cultures of Texas during the 18th and 19th centuries. Not a lot was documented by the Native Americans back then, which, in one sense, made it difficult to find factual information about that period in American History, but in a good way it gave me some leeway to be creative and build the world the way I wanted to.
Which part was the easiest for you to write and why?

Probably 1) the combat scenes and 2) dialogue. To me, those are the most memorable parts of the story and were fun to write.
Which character was the hardest to write and why?

Many Wolves, the main character. His character is much more introspective than the other characters and it's not necessarily his actions that define him. Laughing Crow, the antagonist, was easier because I found his actions were more predictable.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Laughing Crow. I wanted him to be fearsome, but also very human. If he lived in our world today, he would be labeled as cruel and violent. But in the violent world of 1700's Texas, violence and cruelty were needed to survive in a harsh world. He's not your typical antagonist who is predictably evil. He has good sides too.
Were there any characters that you did not like?

No. I'm sure I wouldn't be close friends with many of them if they existed today, but still they are interesting to me in a fictional setting.
What made you choose to write a book on Native Americans?

I've have always been fascinated with Native American cultures, even in my youth, especially the Apache and Comanche nations. They were (are) people who respected the land and were perhaps the greatest warriors in American History. In many ways, their cultures were like the Samurai and the Mongols, who were also victims of modern civilization.
Did you base any of the characters off of real people?

Many Wolves is loosely based off of me. His grandfather (Yellow Feather) is also loosely based off of my grandfather. In fact, one of Yellow Feather's stories was from my grandfather, who also loved nature and birds like me.
What makes you qualified to write a book Native Americans?

In some ways, I'm probably NOT qualified because I am not Native American. However, I have tried very hard to paint an accurate, respectful portrait of Native American cultures in my stories. I don't claim to be 100% accurate on my facts, but based on the historical research I've done, I feel it's an accurate and believable representation of what Native American life was in the 1700's/1800's. This is not a work of non-fiction, but I hope that the fictional world I created is believable and is mostly based on a historical setting. Could there have been a Comanche leader like Laughing Crow? I definitely think so.
What advice would you give to your readers?

I would say to be patient through the first few chapters. I introduce a lot of characters and it might be some what confusing. Stick with it. I think you will find the characters have depth and that many things that happen in the story are both surprising and believable. This story is not like most westerns in the past. There are no cowboys. No heroes riding off in the sunset. It's a story about survival in a very harsh, unforgiving and violent world. It's a story about one man's deep bond with nature and his animal companions and how they survive together against almost impossible odds.
What type of person do you believe would enjoy your book the most?

Anyone who is curious or interested in Native American cultures and wants to learn more about them. Anyone who enjoyed movies like 'Dances With Wolves,' 'The Last of the Mohicans.' or 'The Revenant.'
What/Who inspired you to write this book?

I think some of my inspiration was from Christopher Paolini who wrote 'Eragon.' I figured if a high-schoolkid could write a great story, then I could at least give it a shot. Also, I tried my hand at falconry, but wasn't very successful at it. This story allowed me to practice falconry in my fiction and to explore my love of birds of prey.
Do you plan to write more fictional books with Native Americans characters?

'Puha' is the first book in the Master of the Wild Series. I have written two more books in the series:'Mestizo' and 'Tejano.' If you enjoyed 'Puha', you can continue Many Wolves' adventures by picking up a copy of 'Mestizo', and eventually 'Tejano' too. I am currently working on the fourth, and final, book of the series entitled 'Sangre.'


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)