Sarah N. (Corte Madera, CA)
Captivating from the first page...
"So Mary pulled on her boots, pinned up her hair, changed her sleeping robe for a jersey skirt, and became what she'd never wanted to be: someone who got involved" (p. ix) Sometimes we all just want to be on the sidelines not getting involved. Rachel's problem all along was the right people not being involved. Rachel Lockyer, the main character, was someone I cared about and someone I hoped would have the right person stand up for her. Her love story is beautiful and sad at the some time. Although Rachel Lockyer is not a real person, my gut tells me her story is probably close to someone's real story.
Marsha S. (Nags Head, NC)
Accidents of Providence
I found Accidents of Providence very compelling because of the topic and the way it is written. The author's style of writing puts you right into the place with vivid descriptions of the sights, sounds, and smells of the period. The topic was extremely interesting to me because it is based on the historical facts of infanticide and the Levelers movement in 17th century England, both of which I was unaware until reading this book. The intense affair between Rachel and William Walwyn brings the characters to life in a very human way.
This would be a good book for a group discussion, and the topic should be carefully considered by those in our society today who are seeking to curtail women's rights.
Shirin M. (Beverly Hills, CA)
Accidents of Providence
A page turner that transports you back to England in the seventeenth century. Set amidst Puritanical rule, the author creates a very real place filled with the sights, sounds, and smells of the time. A fast paced plot and vividly drawn characters make this an engrossing read. Historical fiction fans will certainly love this book. It would also appeal to those interested in individualism and the evolving role of women in a society where the rules are stacked against them. A great choice for book clubs; much to discuss and even more to ponder over.
Jane C. (Brighton, MI)
Accident of Providence
The year, 1649, the place, England. The rules of life in that century were very difficult for unwed mothers. This story tells of the life of one mother who gives birth and is charged with murder. Very well written, seemed like real life rather than fiction. Very difficult life in these early times.
Lorraine R. (southampton, NY)
Acts of Providence
An intelligently written, carefully researched first novel, ACTS OF PROVIDENCE was both interesting and thought provoking to read. Stacia Brown brought the 1700's in London to life with her detailed description of how common people lived. She exposed the inequalities of the courts of law, in particular the complete denial of rights of women. She showed how vulnerable women were to their circumstances. both personal and public. This was an extremely well-written historical novel that blended political, religious and social beliefs of a revolutionary period of Britain's history.
Diane S. (Batavia, IL)
Accidents of Providence by Stacia Brown
It is the middle of the 1600's, and in Cromwell's Puritan England a law has been passed to prevent the Destroying and murdering of the children of unmarried woman. I have long been fascinated with the Puritans, their strange relationship with God, where everything pleasurable is a considered a sin, and woman on the fringes are looked on with suspicion. The character of Rachel, is one that will stay with me for a long time, she is so multifaceted and yet so human. It is not until the very end that we find out what happened to her child, among many twists and turns, an investigation and a trial. This book is very well researched, the writing very emotional and the politics of the day, the movement of the Levelers, adding much to the story line. Rachel's plight will touch the other characters in the book, changing many, in good and bad ways. As the investigator Bartwain comments while observing Rachel's trial, "We have decapitated our king and disbanded our House of Lords, and now there is no one left to restore reason and line and order." Life was extremely hard for all, but woman were so harshly judged and often had no recourse.
Shirley S. (Batavia, IL)
Accidents of Providence
A great 17th century history lesson of both customs and religion feed by a wonderful, descriptive writing style. The protagonist a strange but endearing character. One might guess the ending from the beginning but the journey is worth the taking. Never overly written, the narrative introduces a myriad of hamlet dwellers that become as endearing as the story.