Tuesday, November 19, 2013

These is my Words The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine 1881-1901 Arizona Territories, Nancy E. Turner

I really enjoyed this book! It has been recommended to me by several people and I finally got it. It was also one of the books that inspired "Relic" which is when I decided I absolutely HAD to read it. While riveting and exciting, it is not a page turning quick read like other novels. I think that's because it's all in first person, because all of the text is as if reading a diary. A very extremely detailed diary complete with recaps of conversations. I don't usually write that way in my journal, but I have read other journals from early settlers and sometimes they did recount things in a similar way. Plus, you wouldn't have a very good novel if you only had internal reflections and no conversation :-)

I found that I could relate quite a bit with Sarah, her dislike of having her husband away. I get cross too, if my husband volunteers to go away. It's one thing if he HAS to, and quite another if he just WANTS to, you know? I felt like this story captured a lot of what went on in the day, the wrongs of settlers that caused brutal retaliation from the natives to equal that of the settlers, train robbers, literacy, sickness and illness, child bearing, a tiny nod to birth control of the day. The one thing I thought was kind of funny is that things that seem so incredibly obvious to the reader, Sarah is completely oblivious to them. But maybe that's the kind of innocence they held back then.

There are some very shocking things that occur in this book to make it for a more mature audience. My 8 year old asked if she could read it after me......I told her she needed to wait until around high school.

Some discussion points could be the role of religion, the various degrees of love, how women want to be loved, the value of hard work, the value of women being able to be independent as well as part of a team in a relationship, the shift in perspective going from child to parent, depression and how un-treatable it was in the day and how far we've come, and dealing with grief.

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