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A wonderful novel deserving a lot more attention
After finishing this well-crafted novel, and enjoying it immensely, I went to LibraryThing to enter it into my list of books read. I was shocked to see that NO ONE on LT has read this book. In my opinion, the writing is up there with Cold Mountain: it's that good. The characterization was a bit weak, I suppose, but that's a minor complaint. The writing itself is just gorgeous, so maybe only a writer (or, in my case, a writer-in-training) would find that reason enough to read it. My wife couldn't get into it, thought it was too slow-moving.
This is an excellent historical fiction that tries to recreate a time and place, to give the reader a feel for what life was like then. It isn't the typical historical fiction novel that's really a romance novel in disguise. Because it's not a bodice-ripper or a plot-driven thriller, it seems to have found no readership. I'm guessing, I don't know how publishing works. But I'd recommend it to anyone who likes literate historical novels, even if they are lacking battles, intrigue, and that sort of thing. It's a book to savor, linger over, and read again.