Mercer Girls

Mercer Girls It S In Downtrodden Lowell, Massachusetts The Civil War Has Taken Its Toll On The Town Leaving The Economy In Ruin And Its Women In Dire Straits That Is, Until Asa Mercer Arrives On A Peculiar, But Providential, Errand He Seeks High Minded Women Who Can Exert An Elevating Influence In Seattle, Where There Are Ten Men For Every Woman Mail Order Brides, Yes, But Of A Certain CaliberSchoolmarmish Josephine, Tough As Nails Dovey, And Pious Perfectionist Sophronia See Their Chance To Exchange Their Bleak Prospects For New Lives But The Very Troubles That Sent Them Running From Lowell Follow Them To The Muddy Streets Of Seattle, And The Friendships Forged On The Cross Country Trek Are Tested At Every TurnJust When The Journey Seems To Lead Only To Ruin, An Encounter With A Famous Suffragist Could Be Their Salvation But To Survive Both An Untamed New Landscape And Their Pasts, They Ll Need All Their Strength And One Another This was an excellent historical fiction novel that I just couldn t put down Mercer Girls refers to the groups of women that left their New England homes and went to live in Washington territory in the 1860 s Although they were primarily enticed for their education and refinement, it was actually their role as potential brides that was the real intention But this isn t your typical mail order bride scenario Libbie Hawker takes readers through this journey by giving us three very memorabl This was an excellent historical fiction novel that I just couldn t put down Mercer Girls refers to the groups of women that left their New England homes and went to live in Washington territory in the 1860 s Although they were primarily enticed for their education and refinement, it was actually their role as potential brides that was the real intention But this isn t your typical mail order bride scenario Libbie Hawker takes readers through this journey by giving us three very memorable female protagonists that thrive to live life on their own terms In fact, all three characters are instrumental in showing readers just how confined a woman s sphere really was.Many matters including finances, marital status, and domestic violence against women were completely ignored in this time period I loved the unconventional ways in which each woman Jo, Dovey, and Sophorina tackle the daily ins and outs of living in a new territory The search of each woman in discovering what they wanted to really be, made this such an authentic book Each woman has a very unique voice in the story and I can honestly say that there wasn t a character I preferredthan the others However,I did find a few things about each one exasperating, but luckily, not all at the same time Of course, adding onto the story is the growth of the suffrage movement under Susan B Anthony and the fight for justice and equality I always have found this to be a really important piece of history and Hawker weaves this important part of history expertly into the narrative Oh sure, the three women also do have matters of the heart, but it s presented with careful attention to the personalities and desires of each individual woman Put this on your to read list for 2016 I know you will not be disappointedI received an advanced e book copy of this book in exchange for an honest review Thanks NetGalley This book might rate 4 stars to a different reader, but for my own enjoyment I m giving it 3 It just wasn t quite meaty enough for me.Although it s titled Mercer Girls, that history isn t too important to this story, it s just a reason to bring these three women together The East Coast s male population was ravaged by the Civil War, but the West Coast was suffering from a lack of females for the men to marry So Asa Mercer traveled East to bring women back as possible brides in Seattle The fi This book might rate 4 stars to a different reader, but for my own enjoyment I m giving it 3 It just wasn t quite meaty enough for me.Although it s titled Mercer Girls, that history isn t too important to this story, it s just a reason to bring these three women together The East Coast s male population was ravaged by the Civil War, but the West Coast was suffering from a lack of females for the men to marry So Asa Mercer traveled East to bring women back as possible brides in Seattle The first 40% of the book is an introduction to three of these women devout and pure Sophronia, young and wild Dovey, and the elder 35 years Jo, who is content to be a spinster teacher as long as she escapes her life in the East.Each of these women have their own reasons for leaving Massachusetts, and after the long and horrifying trip by boat all the way down to Panama and back up these three are not exactly Mercer success stories The past catches up to each of them, and they all have their own issues that prevent them from getting married The story isabout women s rights and Suffrage from 1864 1870, and Susan B Anthony Abigail Duniway are featured prominently in the story I was a little disappointed that we don t find out much about how the lives of actual Mercer Girls went unless the Mercer experiment was a complete failure all around, but I doubt it All three of these girls have their own adventures when they arrive in Seattle, but none of them are according to Mercer s plan So that history is missing, other than the horrific journey to the West.The Women s Suffrage storyline was very interesting though, and also depressing when you realize how far we ve come and also how far we still have to go If you read this story and wonder how women could have possibly left their entire life choices and finances in the hands of their fathers and husbands, you should also be wondering why our physical bodies and medical needs are still in the hands of others Having read several books recently about the time before Suffrage, I just find the whole thing a bit depressing.The story focuses on the life in Seattle for wild child Dovey, devout Sophronia and the victimized Jo, but it wasn t fleshed out enough for me I d love to read MORE about Dovey in this book we barely see any of her plans come to fruition Sophronia has only a small character development, and there s not enough of Jo either.And the end is wrapped up just a little too tidily I don t buy Dovey s final reconciliation, that comes out of the blue with no explanation I don t understand Jo s final decision whatsoever And Sophronia ended up with the life you expect of her from the beginning.It just wasn t enough for ME But it wasn t a bad book at all, and I think readers who want a lighter story taking place in this time period might very well love it I needed something a bit meatier, and I would have loved to hearabout the other Mercer Girls.Thanks so much to NetGalley for allowing me an advance copy in exchange for an honest review This novel is an interesting piece of historical fiction I find the settling of Seattle to be a very unique story and the tale of the Mercer girls is a part of it.The story, as the blurb explains, is that of Asa Mercer, a Seattle businessman of influence and the founder of the University of Washington, who travels to the east coast to recruit women to come to Seattle He is counting on the fact that the East has lost many men to the Civil War and there are many women looking for a man to settle This novel is an interesting piece of historical fiction I find the settling of Seattle to be a very unique story and the tale of the Mercer girls is a part of it.The story, as the blurb explains, is that of Asa Mercer, a Seattle businessman of influence and the founder of the University of Washington, who travels to the east coast to recruit women to come to Seattle He is counting on the fact that the East has lost many men to the Civil War and there are many women looking for a man to settle down and start families What he didn t count on was the scrutiny that he has to overcome to convince women, of better families to agree to the long voyage and to believe that his intentions are for them to help build families in the West and not to abduct them for other reasons The women also had to come up with quite a bit of money for the travel via train and ship, down to Panama and then up again to Seattle.I found the initial part of the book to be quite interesting, the look at life in Massachusetts and the reasons why these women are leaving their old lives behind.There are three main characters who all have their own reasons for leaving Dovey is the last daughter of a great mill baron who has gone bankrupt due to the inability to obtain cotton from the South It s sort of an age old story, girl flees from an arranged marriage to seek out her own life and make her own way in the world.Josephine is the oldest of the three and is running from a secret past which is revealed about of the way through the book.Sophronia is intent on doing God s work in the West by finding a good Christian man, marrying and starting a family She has thrown away many suitors because they weren t pure enough in their intentions, so she throws in her lot with the other Mercer girls.Rather than recount the gist of the story I d rather give you my thoughts I think the premise of the book was very good and obviously much research was done However much I wanted to like this book it just fell flat for me The characters were stereotypical and their stories just went on and on Maybe some better editing would have helped shrink the middle part of the story down, for me I began to lose interest.The Women s Suffrage storyline was well written but I don t think I found anything really new here that I haven t read before I think that this author has a lot of talent and many will enjoy this story of the Mercer Girls I did end up searching the internet for this history and enjoyed looking at actual pictures of the real Mercer Girls and some of the articles written in the newspapers on the East coast covering the story Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review Hawker has done her research, bringing three women together from the East who travel to Seattle where there are 10 men for every woman during the Civil War The three women were extremely stereotypical, almost cartoonish in their overdrawn characters Chalk this one up to a good premise but poorly executed. I usually love historical fiction but this one felt a bit flat to me I thought the beginning had potential but then it fizzled out and I found myself getting bored Also the ending felt like the author just slapped a bright pink bow on everything and said done Wait what I m not sure if the Mercer Girls is considered Christian Fiction or not but it definitely felt that way to me I had no idea there was going to be so much God talk and moral righteousness from the characters After a while it I usually love historical fiction but this one felt a bit flat to me I thought the beginning had potential but then it fizzled out and I found myself getting bored Also the ending felt like the author just slapped a bright pink bow on everything and said done Wait what I m not sure if the Mercer Girls is considered Christian Fiction or not but it definitely felt that way to me I had no idea there was going to be so much God talk and moral righteousness from the characters After a while it became too much for me I will finish this quick review on the plus side and say, it did make me want to do some research on the real Mercer girls though So Mercer Girls I have a lot to say about this book and it s a real mixed bag of feelings This book came extraordinarily close to being a second DNF this year, but with this one after setting it aside for months I came back and finished reading through it And I think that was absolutely necessary as it divided the book into virtually two books in my brain which is what I felt needed to be done here anyway.Let s start with what I loved about the book the cover I don t know that the cover rea So Mercer Girls I have a lot to say about this book and it s a real mixed bag of feelings This book came extraordinarily close to being a second DNF this year, but with this one after setting it aside for months I came back and finished reading through it And I think that was absolutely necessary as it divided the book into virtually two books in my brain which is what I felt needed to be done here anyway.Let s start with what I loved about the book the cover I don t know that the cover really gives any relation at all to the story, mayyyybe she could have been a Mercer girl, who knows But, this cover would have drawn me to it if I saw it sitting on a shelf regardless of what the story was about or what section it was in While the majority of the image is in gray scale, the aqua color pops in the areas where it appears and the red used for the title area added complementing colors Beautiful cover and I m not ashamed to say that it contributed to my desire to grab up the book in combination with the book description I liked the idea and the historical story behind Mercer Girls I had never heard of Asa Mercer s two expeditions to the east coast to round of young women looking to move west to Seattle to marry the men who had went west to build the city This was the portion of the novel that I did enjoy The tribulations that Mercer faces in trying to gatherthan a few women, even from towns and cities that were facing hardships as a result of the Civil War, were striking You would have thought thatwanted to travel for opportunity, but not quite the case Mercer wasn t trusted, people were afraid that these women would end up as prostitutes instead of wives But our three heroines Jo, Sophronia, and Dovey agree to go with Mercer each for their own reasons pasts that they are trying to escape The women s experience getting to the west was harrowing, the trip by sea was dangerous and quite literally gut wrenching I appreciated the bonding of these women over their shared experiences and how they helped each other to survive Upon arriving in Seattle it was an entirely different experience than what the women expected to find they were not welcomed and the world was aspare existence than they anticipated It was about this time that I felt the novel should have wound to an end, but unfortunately this was only about the halfway point, and where I had set down the novel for a while.The second portion of the novel was about their new life in Seattle, which I didn t find nearly half as interesting and felt like a separate story from the earliest part The women sort of went their separate ways and the story became mired down in the fight for women s suffrage, which felt heavy and a little bit preachy Ultimately, the story wound up fairly well, but I struggled to get through this second portion I did not really like any of the women, especially when they had their own storylines Together, they were a united front and they interacted well with each other, but on their own they were just uninteresting Sophronia what kind of name is that was exceptionally preachy, uptight, and small minded Jo had the most interesting of a backstory and that s not saying too much , but as a person she was boring Dovey she was just too much of everything a wreck and a daredevil They each wereof a stereotype than an actual woman I did not feel like their decisions were well thought out and they were all over the place.If this story had ended before the women s suffrage storyline, this probably would have been a 4 star for me as I enjoyed that plotline However, the second half of the story was a real drag for me and brought it lower in my opinion of the book as a whole.A copy of this book was received for review consideration and this review was previously posted at my blog, The Maiden s Court Nothing, pages and pages of nothing interesting historical experience boiled down to flat characters and nothing How could traveling around the country in 1860 s be so yawn inducing The only character of any teeth was 16but then her major rebellion was to own a brothel Seriously The best part of this book was the author s afterword where she wrote of actual history Other reviewers have used the phrase extreme stereotypes very accurately Unfortunately, I listened to the audio edition which only made it worse because not even the voice in my head could tone them down Improbable does not begin to describe the story lines of the three main characters Don t think you are getting historical fiction, it is a romance through and through My apologies to the author, it distr The best part of this book was the author s afterword where she wrote of actual history Other reviewers have used the phrase extreme stereotypes very accurately Unfortunately, I listened to the audio edition which only made it worse because not even the voice in my head could tone them down Improbable does not begin to describe the story lines of the three main characters Don t think you are getting historical fiction, it is a romance through and through My apologies to the author, it distresses me to be this critical of a book NOTE Received as an ARC from Netgalley This was a period in history I thought I knew nothing about, until I realized the Mercer Girls left the Lowell Mills for Seattle That s when the theme song to the old TV show Here Come the Brides started going through my head But there sthan wedding bells in store for three particular Mercer Girls I always look forward to a new historical novel by Libbie Hawker her meticulous research means I always learn something new via a fascinating story. I loved this book This is one of those books that you miss after it ends It makes me want to learnabout the Mercer Girls Seattle history never ceases to amaze me.

[Epub] ❥ Mercer Girls  By Libbie Hawker – Jobs-in-kingston.co.uk
  • Paperback
  • 422 pages
  • Mercer Girls
  • Libbie Hawker
  • 05 August 2017
  • 1503951979