You might remember back in August that I had a blog reader, Jill, write and say:
“I always love your book reviews, and now it’s time for me to promote one I think you would enjoy, written by my daughter, no less! It’s about a young woman and her father leaving Philadelphia in the late 1890s to homestead in Western Canada, in what is now Alberta and British Columbia. (I live in Alberta, as does Kate, the author) . She writes with a dedication to describing the land and its strengths, and how the main character, Dahlia (Dolly) develops her own strengths and learns who she is and what she wants in life. Her historical references and descriptions make you feel like you are in that time and era. The love of place is evident throughout the book, and the story develops with respect and love for the land and its people. She was especially respectful of the Haida Gwaii on Vancouver Island, checking her details with the local tribal historian. It is an easy read, everyone in my book club (retired Librarians and Language Arts teachers) gave it rave reviews. It is available on Amazon, or as an e-book.
The book is: And So I Roam, by Kate Bothner. I could send you a copy if you don’t want to order it.
Thanks! Jill in Calgary/Phoenix”
I checked and the book is available on Amazon.
You can find it HERE.
And then asked all of you if you would like to read along. This is a big stretch for me as I never read actual books anymore. Everything I take in is via audiobook form while I am going something else, sewing, walking, house cleaning, watering plants…most anything. I really don’t read books anymore at all. So, this was a BIG commitment for me. I’m happy to say it went well.
The book came out in July of this year so there aren’t a lot of reviews. The ones it does have are glowing.
Here is the full synopsis:
“In 1895, shunned by Philadelphian society and reeling from loss, Dahlia Day and her Papa start their lives anew as homesteaders on the Canadian Prairies. Woefully unprepared, they struggle to survive when faced with the harsh realities of scarcity and bitter winters. Their reversal of fortune reveals the joys to be found in a simple life, free from both stifling social rules and those who impose them.
When the demanding work of farm life no longer calms the anxiety that Dahlia has borne her whole life, she flees as she has always done. Joined by her childhood friend Fiona, Dahlia ventures further west in hopes of calming the restlessness within her. Set against the breathtaking landscape of Western Canada, And So I Roam follows Dahlia as she discovers that the hardest battle will always be the one she fights within herself.”
So did you read along? Did you like it?
I ended up very much enjoying the book. Most of the time we all read rags to riches stories and this one was actually a riches to rags story….but not really. In the end, Dahlia had what money couldn’t buy, true happiness.
Please leave comments in the comment section to let me know what you thought. Here are some general questions you can answer if you don’t think of something unprompted.
What did you think of Fiona and her reactions after she was reunited with Dahlia?
Do you think Dahlia would have been as successful as she was on the farm without the help of her neighbor and friend?
Could you have made it through an orchestrated marriage? Could you have chosen the unknown over the security of a rich but loveless marriage?
Have you ever set out into the unknown to find a life better than you dreamed?
I encouraged those of you who do read it to leave a review on Amazon. You can do that HERE. Scroll to the bottom and there will be a place to do that. Those reviews really help an author’s book to be seen and it helps readers select books. Please make honest reviews as that is the only way an author can improve…and readers to know what they are getting into.
You can find the book HERE. If you are a Kindle Unlimited user, the book was available for free at the writing of this blog post.
I invite any other readers who might have a writer in their family to let me know and maybe we can try another book.