Jessica's books

The One and Only Ivan
Revolutionary War on Wednesday
Leprechaun in Late Winter
Ella Enchanted
The Courage of Sarah Noble
Plain Murder
Gone-Away Lake
Circling the Sun
Maggie and Max
The Haunting of Sunshine Girl
The Night Sister
Tuck Everlasting
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Bedknob and Broomstick
Mister Monday
Alice Through the Looking Glass
The Birchbark House
The Hobbit
The Witch's Daughter

Jessica's favorite books »

Monday, September 20, 2010

Book Review: The Personal History of Rachel DuPree by Ann Weisgarber

Synopsis (taken from Goodreads)
In exchange for a wedding ring, Rachel, hired help in an early-twentieth-century Chicago boardinghouse, agrees to give Isaac, the boardinghouse owner's son, her share of 160 acres from the Homestead Act, and together they stake a claim in the forebodingly beautiful South Dakota Badlands.

But after fourteen years and an especially brutal summer in this unforgiving land, the cattle bellow with thirst, and supplies are dwindling. Pregnant, and struggling to feed her family, Rachel is isolated by more than just geography. She is determined to give her surviving children the life they deserve, but she knows that her husband will never leave his ranch: land means a measure of equality with the white man, and Isaac DuPree is not about to give it up just because times are hard. Somehow Rachel must find the strength to stake another, altogether different claim-for herself, and for her children.

My Thoughts:

This is a story that pulls you in from the first page with the trials and heartache of not only a pioneer woman, but an African-American woman.  From page one you feel as if Rachel DuPree is sitting in your living room telling you her life story.  You feel her pain and her worry all through the book.  I can't say the book was happy or uplifting because it's not.  In fact, it's very bleak but it's about life in the Badlands in the early 1900's.  I'm not sure there was anything uplifting during those times. 

The characters were very real and the details are amazing.  This book is at the top of my list of favorites for 2010.  I highly recommend this book to anyone!

1 comment:

  1. Hmm...interesting. I haven't heard of this book! Have you heard of 1,000 White Women? It's not similar but it came to mind because of the trading thing.

    Thanks for the blog award! I have to get it posted...I'm on a delay it feels like with everything lately!