Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Book Review for Sixteen Brides by Stephanie Grace Whitson

In 1871, the lives of sixteen women are changed by one desperate decision to leave the security of their homes and board a train for a new future. The Ladies Emigration Society offers the women a free homestead and a way to support themselves and take control of their lives during a time when independence was often limited or impossible. Each of them abandon the lives and lifestyles they know to become homesteaders, only to learn soon before arriving in Plum Grove, NE that they are being sent to the frontier as mail order wives instead of land owners.

The story of this time and place in history becomes even more interesting as each of the womens' situations that brought them to this point develop. Each woman in the story takes charge of their individual future in suprising ways. This leads to different outcomes for each person, and in turn also tells a unique story about how the community of Plum Grove is transformed by these courageous ladies.

The author weaves some history of the early life of settlers and how they relied on their faith in God to guide their decisions. It also highlights an interesting historical situation that women found themselves in as they settled the West. Too often the stories of women like these ladies are forgotten. Although the story is predictable, there are some exciting plot twists. If you enjoy stories like Little House on the Prairie, you will enjoy this book.
*A complimentary copy of this book was provided by Bethany House Publishers as a review copy in exchange for writing this review. I was free to write the article honestly.
**This review was writen in conjunction with my mother, Patricia Walker

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