Let's have some fun! I am about to share with you one of my most fascinating finds of 2013. This is not historical fiction, per se, but more like a visit with the author's great-grandmother. In fact, these books were based on Nancy Turner's great-grandmother's diaries. The diaries form a framework for the stories, but Turner is adept in creating wonderful, exciting fiction, and developing her characters with amazing skill. What a "can't put down" read these were! And, they are the first two in a trilogy, all about Sarah Agnes Prine who came to Arizona Territories with her family in 1881. I haven't read the third in the series yet, because I deviated and read Turner's book The Water and the Blood instead (but I will review that one later!)
After reading These is my Words, I felt I had found a kindred spirit, because it is about my own grandmother that I am writing also. To have my grandmother's diaries would be such a treasure...a real gift on which to base my book. But alas, I have her life as known by her family, and myself as a child (and a LOT of research done by her own daughter, my Mom, Latane, gives me much to work with!) But, not her own voice, however faint. Because, as with any family history, there is always a great deal you have to "fill in" yourself. And Turner is a very talented writer, so I was impressed. Note the awards listed on the cover of the book shown below! I moved to Sarah's Quilt very soon after finishing These Is My Words, because I couldn't get enough of Sarah Agnes Prine...I worried the second book wouldn't be as good as the first, but soon discovered it was the first book's equal in every way.
Then there is the added delight of reading about the area in which I am living, and getting a real insight into the early years of Tucson's history. Jump into these books (and the third, which I do still plan to read) and let me know if you have the same reaction. There would be no better way to ride out the snowstorms many of you are facing (as Mom said in a recent post). Let me know what you think!