Thursday, 29 May 2014

Book Review ~ Burning Sky, Lori Benton


By Dorothy Adamek

"I remember the borders of our land, though I have been gone from them nearly half the moons of my life. But who there will remember me? What I have seen, what I have done, it has changed me... I am the place where two rivers meet, silted with upheaval and loss...Yet memory of our land is a clear stream. I shall know it as a mother knows the faces of her children. It may be I will find me there."

Abducted by Mohawk Indians at fourteen and renamed Burning Sky, Willa Obenchain is driven to return to her family's New York frontier homestead after many years building a life with the People. At the boundary of her father's property, Willa discovers a wounded Scotsman lying in her path. Feeling obliged to nurse his injuries, the two quickly find much has changed during her twelve-year absence. Her childhood home is in disrepair, her missing parents are rumored to be Tories, and the young Richard Waring she once admired is now grown into a man twisted by the horrors of war and claiming ownership of the Obenchain land. 
When her Mohawk brother arrives and questions her place in the white world, the cultural divide blurs Willa's vision. Can she follow Tames-His-Horse back to the People now that she is no longer Burning Sky? And what about Neil MacGregor, the kind and loyal botanist who does not fit into in her plan for a solitary life, yet is now helping her revive her farm? 
In the aftermath of the Revolutionary War, strong feelings against "savages" abound in the nearby village of Shiloh, leaving Willa's safety unsure. Willa is a woman caught between two worlds. As tensions rise, challenging her shielded heart, the woman called Burning Sky must find a new courage - the courage to again risk embracing the blessings the Almighty wants to bestow. Is she brave enough to love again?
*****
Lori Benton’s debut novel Burning Sky is a refreshing love story, and so much more. It’s the story of prejudice and long held attitudes well entrenched in the frontier setting of North America in her developing years. Historically rich and accurate, the story is delivered by a diverse cast, complex and thought provoking in their motivations and actions. 

Lori writes a lyrical, deep story. The kind I most prefer. Her characters fight for the strength to flourish when everything they rely on has been taken from them. I don’t normally care too much for the love triangle Willa finds herself in, but I felt duly compensated by the well drawn characters of Joseph the Indian and Neil McGregor the Scotsman. And Willa just shines.

If you’re looking for a tender story, this is your pick. 

Highly recommended. 
*****

For your chance to win a special gift copy of Burning Sky, please leave a comment below. It's my pleasure to personally offer this book and I’ll announce the winner next Monday.   

Dorothy Adamek lives in Melbourne with her Beloved and their three gorgeous kids. She's the winner of the 2013 FHL ~ Touched By Love Competition. Enamoured by all things 19th century, she writes The Heartbeat of Yesteryear, Historical Romance - Aussie style. Come say G'day at her blog, Ink Dots. 

20 comments:

  1. I can't wait to read this one! I've heard so many good things. Thanks for the review Dotti.

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    1. Hi Cat, I know you will love this one. You're also a fan of lyrical writing. :)

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  2. Lori's debut sure has big raps on it. I do hope to get to it one day.

    Good review, Dotti.

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    1. Thanks, Ian. I hope you get to enjoy it soon. :)

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    2. This looks great. I love stories that weave culture through the pages. Well done.

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  3. Hi Dotti,
    Sounds very romantic, but also with quite a bit of tension. A good combination. I'll have to put it on my TBR list. Thanks for the recommendation.

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    1. Hi Paula, yes, this would be a great addition to your book pile. Your daughter might like it, too. :)

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  4. This sounds like a beautiful story, rich with cultural tension and laced with romance. A novel to curl up with. Susanne Timpani

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    1. Hi Susan, oh yes, you're so right about curling up with this one! Get the blanket and mug of coffee ready, too. You won't want to move once you get cosy. :)

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  5. Dotti, great review! The cultural aspect of the story sounds fascinating. I'm also not a big fan of love triangles in romances, and I'm curious to discover how and why it works really well in this story. Thanks for sharing your thoughts :)

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    1. Hi Narelle, Lori did a splendid job working the love triangle out at the end. I won't spoil it for you, but from my chats with Lori I know there's even more coming to address what the reader will want to know about...'what happened next?'

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  6. Hello Dotti, This book has had my attention since I have seen the cover. Then when I read what it was about I knew that I must read it. Thank you for sharing this interview and a chance to win a copy. ~ Blessings ~ lisastifler(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. You're welcome, Lisa. I hope you get the chance to read it soon. Good luck in the draw. :)

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  7. Sounds good. Thanks for telling us Dotti.

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    1. Always a pleasure to share good books around, Dale. Good luck in the draw. :)

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  8. May I suggest we offer an Amazon gift card one day? I'd love to win one because I'm forever downloading recommended books! Great review, Dotti ;)

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    1. What a great idea, Andrea! I'm also picking up lots of books from our Thursday reviews.
      If you've already downloaded Burning Sky, you're in for a treat. :)

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  9. Oh, this sounds so very special, Dottie. And a debut novel! It has echoes of "Dancing With Wolves" and that movie tore at my heartstrings. I'm sure Lori weaves a lot of truth into her story. This must have happened many times over during the clash of cultures in that era.

    ritagal at optusnet dot com dot au

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  10. Hi Rita, yes, Lori's had a wonderful response to her debut novel. Thanks for entering. Good luck in the draw. :)

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  11. This contest is now closed. Congratulations to Paula Vince. You're the winner of Lori's Burning Sky. I'm sure you'll love it, :)

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