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review 2017-02-06 17:45
One Thousand White Women by Jim Fergus

 

One Thousand White Women is the story of May Dodd, a Chicago socialite from the 1800s, who signs on to the Federal government plan of Brides for Indians as a means to escape an insane asylum where her family has placed her because she had fallen in love with a man below her station. Through her journals May describes her life in the asylum and later her new life as a prairie bride of Chief Little Wolf of the Cheyennes. Along her journey she tells of her fellow brides who come from all walks of life. In return for their marriage to a Cheyenne and subsequent bearing of a mixed race baby or two, the government hopes to assimilate the Cheyennes into the white man’s culture. Along the way May meets an Army Captain and they fall in love but part, knowing that their love could never be. May continues on her journey, assimilating into the life of the Cheyennes as the third wife of Chief Little Wolf, all the while keeping a set of notebooks that become her journals.

 

The descriptions of life on the prairie are both breathtaking and brutal. But through it all May begins to question which side is the real savage – Native American or white Christian. A detailed and fast booking book, it will appear to the reader that the journals they are reading are true although the author states up front that everything contained in the book is fiction based on the true fact that such a Brides for Indians program was proposed but never acted upon.

 

I loved the different ‘brides’ who, although stereotypical, give much needed diversity to the story. And although we see Chief Little Wolf as a proud and courageous warrior we soon learn that he is so much more. Finely researched, cleverly written, and engrossing the reader will find this story difficult to put down.

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review 2015-08-21 17:08
Murder on the Rue Cassette by Susan Russo Anderson
Murder On The Rue Cassette - Susan Russo Anderson

From the description on Amazon:

 

The story begins in Paris at the famous First Impressionist Exhibit on April 15, 1874. But later that night, when the body of a countess is found in the Rue Cassette, Serafina is sent by the slain woman's wealthy father to investigate the brutal murder. Her budget bountiful, Serafina and her entourage stay at the plush Hôtel du Louvre, dine at Véfour and La Maison Dorée, interview friends of the deceased, have a midnight snack at Les Halles, visit with Berthe Morisot, Cézanne, Les Mardistes and other artists, and lock horns with the French police. As the plot twists, Serafina and her friends find themselves in the savage grip of a mind gone feral.

 

This is the third book in the series (or fourth, counting a novella, that only existed in e book form).

 

As I have mentioned before, I really like this series of mysteries, set in 1860's Italy (Sicily). One thing I really like is that the main characters are so nice and interesting.

Just like the other books in the series, this is a well written mystery, in a fascinating setting, with a number of well developed characters.

Source: crimsoncorundum.dreamwidth.org/132459.html
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review 2013-05-06 00:00
Review - The Dark Lady
The Dark Lady - Maire Claremont

I gave this a C- at All About Romance, so 2.5 stars.The Dark Lady is one of those books that intrigued me from the moment I saw the synopsis - drug-addicted heroine, dark and gothic-sounding plot - I really looked forward to this debut. And then I read it. It caught my attention at first, but ultimately ended up a major disappointment.

 

As the book opens, Lord Ian Blake has returned from India, obviously in pain and deeply burdened. The opening of the book has an almost gothic tinge to it as Ian approaches Carridan Hall in search of his beloved Eva, Lady Carin. With just a few short paragraphs, the author has shown us that Ian is miserable and guilty over the fact that his friend Hamilton was killed in India, that he seeks to make amends somehow to Hamilton's widow, and that he loves her. The mood is set, and in the beginning, the writing in this book is strong and compelling.

 

Upon reaching Carridan, Ian learns that not only has Eva lost her husband, but that her son has died as well, and Eva herself is an inmate in an asylum. Ian goes to see her, and finds himself horrified at the conditions in which she is kept. Unkempt and heavily sedated with laudanum, Eva is far from the vivacious creature of Ian's memory. Ian immediately decides to rescue her from the asylum, and manages to spirit her away. And it is around this time that things start to fall apart.

 

This is a partial review. You can find the complete text at All About Romance.

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