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Book Title

Yellowstone's Child

Charles W LIebert

Word Count



40,000 - 60,000



What's it all about?

The fictional story, Yellowstone’s Child’s central theme is personal identity. How one answers the question, “Who am I?” It begins when a married couple, Sam and Gloria Graham, chicken farmers from Mississippi, lose their ten-year-old daughter, Sally, to brain cancer. After her death, they plan to sell their Mississippi farm and move to Nebraska. Before selling, to help recover from their daughter’s death, they take a short vacation in February to Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. At the same time, at Yellowstone, three cousins from the Johanson family reunion fall into a river partially fed by hot springs. Two get right out, but the third, Sarah, hit her head and floats away on her back downstream.
The Grahams rescue her and discover she has complete amnesia so, they kidnap her and take her back to Mississippi to replace their dead daughter, Sally. Years later, about to finish her Masters, she has an auto accident, bumps her head, and the memory of her life before she was ten returns. She confronts her "parents," and they admit to kidnapping her so, she begins to search for her real identity. She asks, “Who am I? Sarah, Sally, or Elaine. Am I? Johanson, Graham, Johnson, or Detective Scott.” She concludes, NO! She's Yellowstone's Child!


She looked directly at Gloria: “Mrs. Longe-Graham your father Malcolm has banked with us for more than 25 years so we have a long connection with your family. There are two accounts we need to talk about today. The first account was set up 26 years ago and was modified to be in trust for you. He set it up, as a trust so all the money would pass to you without inheritance taxes when he died. In 1986, he transferred some of his assets to this new account. It is set up as a trust for your daughter Sally Anne Graham to pass on to her when she attains the age of 18. Sally is 10 now, correct?”
Gloria responded, “Yes, 10.” Gloria thought: “Our new Sally is going to get some money. Maybe it’ll be enough for her to go to college.”
Helga continued, “Your account was converted to cash about six months ago. I believe your father knew he didn’t have much time left and wanted to give you the opportunity to move the money if you wish. Sally’s account, however, contains assets that should grow to double or triple their current value in the eight years until she is eighteen. The bank holds Sally’s account in trust until she attains the age of 18 when the assets will be transferred to her. That money cannot be moved, as we are permanent trustees. Do either of you have any questions before I review the balances?”
They both signified “no” by nods. “OK, Gloria let’s start with your account. As I said this account is all cash so the value is fixed at this time. The current balance in US dollars is,” Michael and Gloria both held their breaths, “ten million, six hundred forty-eight thousand, eight hundred sixty-five dollars and ninety-two cents. $10,648,865.92” They both gasped.
Gloria said, “I had no idea…” her voice trailed off.
Sam asked, “Are you sure it’s that much money?”
“Absolutely certain I checked the balance myself this morning. You understand Malcolm was an amazing manipulator. Sometimes he made obscene profits on investments. One time he bought an oil-drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico that the oil company was ready to abandon. He got it for about 10% of what the drilling company had already put into it. All advisors, he consulted, told him not to buy it. He bought it anyway. It hit a major oil deposit two days after the purchase was closed. The company tried to sue to get it back, but no court would hear them. No one could ever figure out how he knew that it would strike a large deposit.”

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