“All She Left Behind” by Jane Kirkpatrick

Jane Kirkpatrick is a very talented author.  Her books are very true to original stories and about true figures in history.  I read “All She Left Behind” and was anxious to read “Everything She Didn’t Say”.  I found the writing in both novels to be the same quality in describing the pioneers heading west in the late 1800’s.

This particular novel is based on the journal writings of Carrie Strahorn.  She details her journey west with her husband, who worked for the Union Pacific railroad.  His job was to start the beginnings of towns that the railroad would follow on its way west.  From her writings, it is clear that she was not really happy in her marriage and did what she had to do to keep her husband happy.  Her life did not turn out anything as she expected it to, but she persevered.

I felt so sorry for her and for the other pioneer women who traveled west because their husbands sought riches and prosperity both from the gold fields and from the land.  I’m afraid that I would not have made a good pioneer woman.  Traveling and living in the west at this time brought no refinement.  The living conditions were dirty, meager and lonely.  Most women of this day and age would not tolerate the control husbands had over their wives.  For women to have a say in any financial or any other aspect of their marriage was unheard of.  This novel gives a wonderful look into the life of women of that period.

As one of the Revell Reads Blog Tour Reviewer, I received a print copy of this book to read and review.  I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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