Friday, April 17, 2015

Book review: Historical novella Acres of Dreams by Sharon McGregor

Acres of Dreams book review
Sharon McGregor

Short Historical Inspiration

From the Publisher: 
Katy is a nineteen year old girl sent to Canada by her family in the late 1890s to find a suitable husband. Katy has other plans however--she wants a career, not marriage. 

During the round of social activities arranged by her sister, she is drawn against her will towards her distant cousin, Robert, who loves Katy on sight. She has also attracted the attention of her brother in law's boss, Martin, who doesn't take rejection easily and evens the score by destroying Katy's reputation. 

Facing a return home in disgrace, Katy tries another way out. She accepts the offer of marriage from Robert, who is on his way west to set up a homestead on the prairies. 

Katy is not prepared for the loneliness and hardships she is about to face. She has a difficult journey ahead, learning to become a woman and a wife and discovering how to love. 

Prism Book Group
April, 2015
.99 novella e-book
buy on Amazon

My review:
Author Sharon McGregor packs a lot into this sweet little historical novella. Immigrating to Toronto, Canada from Ireland, Katy has bigger dreams than finding a husband to take care of her. She is invited to live with her expectant sister, Maggie, and husband while she’s introduced to society just before the turn of the twentieth century. An unfortunate incident damages Katy’s reputation beyond repair, and instead of being sent home to Ireland, Katy accepts an offer of marriage to a stranger.
Katy may be considered an adult in her era, but she has a lot of growing up to do. Things didn’t turn out her way—any way she wanted—with either education and career first, followed maybe by a suitable husband. Stuck with a quiet man she admires but isn’t sure she can love, she reluctantly follows him out to the prairie, along with Robert’s partner and his wife, Dan and Ellen, who is used to living without many amenities. Katy meets the neighbors, Ukrainians, and makes friends, such as she can. With her letters to her sister filled with angst, Maggie announces a visit, a cause of even deeper rift between Robert and Katy as Katy wants to offer comfort that simply isn’t available. It takes some deeper sorrow for Katy and Robert to face themselves and their relationship and decide whether they can make their new life work.

Told from Robert and Katy’s sides, this lovely story shows the reader both joy and hardship in a long-gone era, on the great western prairies of Canada. I loved it and recommend it for a sweet afternoon read.

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