|Size||4 x 7|
|Published||Cedar Fort 2016|
(3.5 Stars) My favorite way to learn some new facts about history is to pick up a great historical fiction and Carla Kelly really knows her stuff. This book is a collection of short stories that all revolve around soldiers and life in the army. Although the characters, situations, and details are realistic and sordid, each story is told in a way that is gentle and certainly warms the heart.
As I previously mentioned, details were brought to my attention through each story that I hadn't thought of before. Specifically, the roles that women played during different wars. Am I ever grateful to live when and where I do!
Some of the stories were quite short and just ended. I wanted more--more details, more development...just more. Others were a little longer and fulfilled some of that desire for more. While I was left wanting, I still enjoyed each story and loved getting to see a snippet into the lives of these characters during their times in history.
Content: very mild war violence; very mild romance. Clean!
*I received a copy through the publisher, which in no way affected my review. All thoughts and opinions are solely my own and I wasn't compensated for them.*
This book is WONDERFUL! War stories like you have never read before-- These tales are not of the battlefield, but are behind the scenes of the war, and yet they are oh. so. powerful. You will read of officers' wives, hospital personnel, children being left with a charge to watch over their families, soldiers helping soldiers, and much more. And even as each are living in the most difficult of circumstances-- the heart is still a tender thing and life has a way of just going on. ABSOLUTELY LOVED THIS COLLECTION OF STORIES!
This is a collection of short stories about life as a soldier, or a woman working with soldiers on the frontier. The first story about a wife learning how to make do in Fort Laramie while her husband is away for several months drew me in. I marveled at her sense of humor in a tough situation. Later on in the book, the story about Mary Murphy broke my heart and had me wanting much more from that story. That's the thing with collections of short stories - there's just not enough room for much detail. Some of these stories I would have liked to delve in to more, to come to know the characters and their circumstances better.
I'm a huge fan of Carla Kelly's writing style. She has a way of including the gritty and sometimes grim facts of life from the historical eras her stories are set in that only adds to the intensity and realism of the plot and romance while allowing the subtle humor of her characters to bring a lighter and hopeful tone. I love that her characters are regular, everyday working people. She is a great researcher and I can trust that her stories are historically accurate. This collection of stories is a nod to the women who sacrificed a great deal during their lives serving with the army in the wilderness of the western frontier. Some are short stories that provide a vignette, while others are longer novellas with a fuller story arc. My favorite was "Take a Memo" with the shy Corporal Ted Sheppard and his opportunity to get closer to sweet Millie while following orders to get to the bottom of who is responsible for wandering cows and missing milk. This is a collection not to miss for fans of western historical fiction and sweet romance.
(Thank you to Cedar Fort Publishing for a copy of the book; this is my honest review)