Friday, January 25
Book Review: The Purchase
Author: Linda Spalding
Summary: In 1798, Daniel Dickinson, a young Quaker father and widower, leaves his home in Pennsylvania to establish a new life. He sets out with two horses, a wagon full of belongings, his five children, a 15-year-old orphan wife, and a few land warrants for his future homestead. When Daniel suddenly trades a horse for a young slave, Onesimus, it sets in motion a struggle in his conscience that will taint his life forever, and sets in motion a chain of events that lead to two murders and the family's strange relationship with a runaway slave named Bett.
My Rating: 6/10
What I liked/disliked about the book: I can definitely see why it was on some of the award lists for 2012, as the writing was fantastic and at times I was drawn into the story. But, I did begin to lose interest in the end which made the difference from a good read to just an okay read.
Considering, I don't usually like books with plots who focus on Quakers, so I was surprised on how hard it was to put it down at times when I first started reading the book. The writing was superb and I didn't want to have to stop reading it because of how the writing flowed throughout the book. Unfortunately, the book began to drag and by the last third of the book, I was bored with the story and its characters. Nothing seemed to move forward and the characters development began to stand still. The last few pages things started to pick up, but for me, it was pretty much too late. It just became tedious to read by the end. I still enjoyed the authors writing style and narrative, but the plot didn't work out for me.
The characters were another issue I had with the book. Mary was hard to even like for the first half of the book, although I did like her more in the end. I also enjoyed her development throughout the course of the book, but she seemed to be the only one who had any kind of development. Some characters all but disappeared during the second half of the book, like Ruth. As for Daniel, he just seemed to be at a standstill throughout the entire book and I was never able to warm up to him as a character. I think others would enjoy the characters, but for me. I was fairly bored with them all throughout the book.
Overall, it was an okay read. The writing alone kept me reading and the book is worth reading on that merit alone.
Would I recommend it to read: I would. I didn't love the book, but the writing was excellent, and I think a lot of readers would enjoy the plot a lot more than I did. I know for sure this book is right up a lot of my fellow readers alley - so it is worth recommending to others.
What to read next: A Complicated Kindness, The Imposter Bride
Challenges: 100 Book Challenge, 2013 Category Challenge, Alphabet Challenge, Canadian Book Challenge VI, New Author Challenge, Read-a-latte Challenge