ALL TOGETHER IN ONE PLACE by Jane Kirkpatrick, (c) 2000. Here’s a story about Mazy and Jeremy Bacon who are traveling on the Oregon Trail from with Mazy’s mother Elizabeth Mueller and a 15 year old girl named Tipton who is hired on to help Mazy who just broke her arm before leaving on this trip. Tipton is also engaged to a young man named Tyrell who is the blacksmith for the trip. They not not allowed to marry her until Tipton turns 17, as he promised her mother and father. Meanwhile Tyrell seems to admire a rather spunky mature woman who’s driving her own wagon. This book is based on a true story by the way. I look forward to reading the rest of the book.
THE HEARTS OF HORSES by Molly Gloss, (c) 2007. This World War I period story takesin the winter of 1917. Nineteen year old Martha Lessen is a tall big-boned woman, with a pleasant wide mouthed smile. She travels to eastern Oregon with three of her horses looking for work. What with the war going on many men are missing from their farms women have taken over the job of “breaking” horses to saddle. Martha doesn’t “break” a horse as we usually think, as in a bucking bronco style, she “gentles” them into the saddle. As the townspeople get to know Martha they learn to appreciate her company and her way with their horses. I’m only on page 62 and I’m really enjoying this book so far. I look forward to reading more books by this authoress.
NARCISSA by Julie Penny, 1985. This 20 year old paperback has such tiny type that I put off reading it for months! But I do enjoy a good pioneer story every now and then so I am going to finish the book anyway! It’s 1836 and nineteen year old Narcissa Peterson agrees to marry Marcus Pittman who is a medical doctor with missionary interests who is traveling out to the Northwest Territory to heal and minister to the Indians along with a Presbyterian minister named Henry Fielding and his wife Elizabeth who becomes a good friend to the artistic Narcissa. Now they areal journeying west with a group of fur trappers and many of the men they work with and meet disapprove of bringing women out west, as the trip is too hard on them. As you may know it’s a very hard life traveling out west-a mere 20 or so miles a day and takes several months to accomplish it.
THE WOMEN OF PRIMROSE CREEK by Linda Lael Miller, (2000). This is the 4 part book with a story for each character. About four cousins who inherit a vast tract of land in Nevada Territory. To be split between two sisters; Bridget, a widow with a 3 year old son named Noah and her younger sister Skye and their cousins Christy and Megan. The four cousins were raised on their grandfather’s farm in Virginia, but unfortunately the girls lost that after he died. Their only thing to do was go on a wagon train to the land they inherited in Nevada. Christy and Megan were living a miserable life in England with their mother until she died leaving them penniless. Now they have traveled to Nevada to join their cousins and take up residence on their inherited land.
Considering the is a Linda Lael Miller book the sex was toned down some, which makes me happy. So consider it 4 short stories each about 140 pages long and they are all interwoven with the story line. I’m half way done with it, and it’s not a bad book at that!
JOELLE’S SECRET by Gilbert Morris, 2008. Remember Gilbert Morris? The former pastor now an English professor and very prolific Christian writer? I really do enjoy his writing, except when he comes out preaching. But I manage to push it into the background and read the story anyway. This one is about an orphaned 17 year old Joelle Lynn Mitchell who runs away from her evil stepfather soon after her mother dies. It seems that Burl Harper wants her in his bed with or without a marriage certificate. He has a warrant out for her arrest claiming she stole from him. Of course she didn’t. She meets up with Owen Majors, a recently released Ex-Con who really wasn’t guilty of the crime. Anyway, Owen think Joelle is a young man because that’s how she hid her identity while on the run from her stepfather. He eventually finds out of course, and I suppose they fall in love. Morris’s books usually have a happy ending and the hero and or heroine usually get “saved”.
THE HOUSE OF WINSLOW SERIES, the RELUCTANT BRIDEGROOM 1838 by Gilbert Morris (1990). The House of Winslow Series seems to be pleasing to the reader’s eye, if he or she can overlook the Bible thumping you find occasionally. I’m really enjoying this story about SKY WINSLOW, who’s one-quarter Sioux, the widower and father of a 12-year-old boy named Joe. Sky has the job of transporting a number of single women over the Oregon trail in order to become the wives of men they’ve never even met before. From reading a few of the other books in the series I already know he and Rebekah Jackson, she’s a single, beautiful and pregnant 22-year-old with an orphan baby boy she is raising. They fall in love and get married at some point. It is proving to be a good read.
HALF BROKE HORSES- A True Life Novel by Jeannette Walls (2010). This was a New York Times Bestseller! I was drawn to the photo of poor country kids on the cover, plus the first few sentences drew me in even more: “Those old cows knew trouble was coming before we did. It was late on an August afternoon, the air was hot and heavy like it usually was in the rainy season.”
Why am I reading another true life story? Well this type suits me better I hope. This is the story of Lily Casey Smith the grandmother of Jeannette Walls. Lily was quite a character, who was helping her father break horses at age six! (Can you imagine?). At age fifteen she left home to become a teacher in a frontier town , riding 500 miles alone to get there! Now that sure does sound interesting. Lily survived all sorts of ordeals, such as tornadoes, floods, fires, droughts, the Great Depression, and a most heartbreaking tragedy. (I won’t tell you as I don’t know it yet anyway!). She also experienced prejudice as a woman even though she was a tough and strong and smart as any man. The book is “destined to become a classic.”, so it says on the back cover.. so maybe your own kids and grand-kids will read it for a book report someday!
I LOVED this book! And highly recommend it!