Thursday, July 1, 2010

Book Review: Sixteen Brides by Stephanie Grace Whitson

A friend of mine read Sixteen Brides and recommended it to me. Since I had it on my shelf to read for review, I decided to take her advice and read it now.  

Sixteen BridesSixteen Brides is the story of a group of widowed women who want to make a new start by moving west and buying land for homesteads. They agree to go with a man named Hamilton Drake, who promises to help them. They soon find out, however, that Drake has actually been paid to bring these ladies to a particular town in order for them to marry. The women, of course, are angry to be so duped, and five of them refuse to travel further with him and instead they begin making plans to buy land and build a house together. The rest of the book is about these five women (and one boy, the son of one of the widows) and their experiences in learning to cope with pioneer life in the frontier of Nebraska. Some eventually get married, and some surprises are revealed along the way.

When I first began reading this book, I was a little confused about the characters. There were too many to keep up with. After a while, though, the number dwindled and it was easier to follow. I still felt that the writing was somewhat disjointed, however, and a lot of the phrasing seemed awkward. I had trouble many times understanding what was happening. The book just did not flow well for me.

I did like the stories of the women and how they interacted with each other. The male characters were equally enjoyable and I like how the author showed the Christians as not so perfect and in need of forgiveness. That was refreshing. I have read others by this author, and although I don't think it was her best work, I will not hesitate to read another book written by her. If I rated this one on a scale of one to five, I would give it a three.

(I received this book from Bethany House for review purposes. I received no monetary compensation for this review. All opinions expressed are completely my own.)

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