A beautifully written novel.
WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT
1890’s Colorado. Desperate following her mother’s sudden death, thirteen-year-old Hannah Owens apprentices as domestic help with a wealthy doctor’s family in Colorado Springs. When the doctor declares bankruptcy and abandons his family to finance his mistress Pearl DeVere’s brothel, however, Hannah is thrown into a vortex of gold mining bonanzas and busts, rampant prostitution, and the economic, political and cultural upheavals of the era. Two of Cripple Creek’s most colorful historic characters, Winfield Scott Stratton, eccentric owner of the richest gold mine in Cripple Creek, and Pearl DeVere, the beautiful madam of The Old Homestead, come to life as this old-fashioned, coming-of-age saga unfolds, the first of two historical fiction novels by debut author Mim Eichmann — a tribute to the women who set the stage for women’s rights.
WHY YOU SHOULD READ THIS BOOK
A Sparrow Alone by Mim Eichmann is a somber tale of a girl finding her feet in the world.
Eichmann’s lucid prose brings the characters and the mining town of Cripple Creek to life vividly. She realistically portrays the harsh living conditions of the miners and equally harsh conditions for women in the 19th century. She also poignantly portrays the hatred and apathy of society towards the prostitutes. Her writing has a unique quality of evoking emotions from the reader. Consequently, I was gutted by a pivotal character’s death in the book.
A Sparrow Alone has an incredibly strong female cast who look out for each other in times of adversity. However, it was frustrating and sad to see them being belittled by society for situations over which they had no control. But, I guess, that was how the nineteenth-century society was.
I found all the characters to be three-dimensional. I could empathize with Hannah and rooted for her as she tumbled from one misfortune to another. Hannah’s naivete endears her to Winfield Stratton, the eccentric millionaire of Cripple Creek, but also makes her vulnerable to the onslaughts of selfish people including sexual abuse. However, she never sacrifices her good nature despite the hardships she endures.
Despite being slow-paced, I found this coming-of-age story of Hannah set in 1890s Colorado to be highly readable. I am looking forward to reading more about Hannah’s story in the sequel Muskrat Ramble.
Genre: Historical Fiction || Pages: 312 || Published on 15th April 2020
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Many thanks to Dave @ TheWriteReads for organizing this blog tour. Many thanks to the publisher for my copy of the book. This does not affect my opinion on the book. I opted to provide an honest review on my blog.
Mim Eichmann has found that her creative journey has taken her down many exciting, interwoven pathways. For well over two decades she was known primarily in the Chicago area as the artistic director and choreographer of Midwest Ballet Theatre and director of its home, Midwest Ballet Academy, bringing full-length professional ballet performances to thousands of dance lovers every year and was the recipient of many arts’ programming grants.
A desire to become involved again in the folk music world brought about the creation of her acoustic quartet Trillium, now in its 15th year, a folk band well known for its eclectic repertoire performing throughout the Midwest that has also released four cds. She’s also written the lyrics and music for two award-winning original children’s cds, “Why Do Ducks Have Webby Toes?” and “Wander Down Beyond the Rainbow” and occasionally schedules concerts of her children’s music and movement programs.
Always captivated by the writings, diaries and journals of late 19th century women, as well as that era’s economic, social and political upheavals, Ms. Eichmann has now put pen to paper and the historical fiction novel she has been passionately researching, its rich synopsis gradually evolving over many years, has finally become a reality. We hope you’ll enjoy “A Sparrow Alone” and its sequel, “Muskrat Ramble.”
Author’s Link(s): Website