Monday, September 24, 2012

May B. by Caroline Starr Rose

I've always been fascinated by prairie life -- the Laura Ingalls Wilder books gave me a glimpse into the past and since then I've wondered what it would have been like to settle part of a wild, young country.  

What were the real problems they faced, once settlers actually settled?  What was the internal drama as opposed to the external drama of survival?

May B. opens up an entirely new look at prairie life from this angle.

It focuses on May (Mavis Elizabeth Betterly), a young girl who wants to earn a teaching certificate but unfortunately has a difficult time reading.  Instead of going back to school, she's sent to help a new prairie bride adjust to this wild and tough environment.  What happens next is shocking and scary.  How will May B. survive?

I love this book -- the story is told in poetry, which is perfect for May.  The economy of words allows you to concentrate on her character instead of getting bogged down by descriptions of the prairie, farming, etc.  Instead, May shines and shows us that guts, determination, and the sheer will to live (and learn) are more powerful than what is outside us.

The cover is lovely, too:

If you enjoy reading historical fiction, poetry, young America, or tough heroines, give May B. a try.

See you Wednesday, and good news!  I have about a dozen books from the library to read, so more reviews are on the way!

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