Tyler R. Tichelaar, Ph.D. and seventh generation Marquette resident, was raised on tales of his hometown's past. His books celebrating Upper Michigan history include The Marquette Trilogy, Narrow Lives, and My Marquette. "I went upstairs, too tired to fear leaving my sister alone with a strange man. He could not possibly hurt her in his condition, and he was so handsome I felt almost certain he was kind. Perhaps when he became well, he could teach us how to live here--at least show me how to chop down a tree or shoot ...
Tyler R. Tichelaar, Ph.D. and seventh generation Marquette resident, was raised on tales of his hometown's past. His books celebrating Upper Michigan history include The Marquette Trilogy, Narrow Lives, and My Marquette. "I went upstairs, too tired to fear leaving my sister alone with a strange man. He could not possibly hurt her in his condition, and he was so handsome I felt almost certain he was kind. Perhaps when he became well, he could teach us how to live here--at least show me how to chop down a tree or shoot Uncle's rifle. I told myself his presence was a good thing. Little could I foresee how much he would hurt us both." In 1873, orphaned sisters Barbara and Adele Traugott travel to Upper Michigan to live with their uncle, only to find he is deceased. Penniless, they are forced to spend the long, fierce winter alone in their uncle's remote wilderness cabin. Frightened yet determined, the sisters face blizzards and near starvation to survive. Amid their difficulties, they find love and heartache-and then, a ghostly encounter and the coming of spring lead them to discovering the true miracle of their being. PRAISE FOR TYLER R. TICHELAAR'S BOOKS "I am now and forever a huge Tyler Tichelaar fan. He's a man with a wonderful gift for storytelling, and a knack for presenting historical facts in a way that can rival any great historical fiction author." - Bethany Andrews, Book.of.the.Moment "Never predictable, sometimes heartbreaking, always hopeful, this author's work is a pleasure to read." - Laura Fabiani, author of Daughter of Mine From Marquette Fiction - Learn more at www.MarquetteFiction.com
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It?s time for bed and I?ve been reading a bit of this story every night. I just reached for the book and realized I finished it. What a letdown. The characters were part of my bedtime routine, but they are all busy in their own world now. I wonder how Barbara and Adele are doing now.
This is the second book I?ve read by Tyler Tichelaar. I have to say, that it was as equally charming and quaint a tale, of days gone by, as ?The Only Thing That Lasts,? which was the first book I read. What really caught me up in the story was the daring and tenacity that these two girls showed by trying to live in their uncle?s abandoned Michigan cabin for a winter. There?s something that touches my heart about women who brave the odds and stick out the hardships of surviving against nature as if it were no more difficult than missing a bus and walking to work. However, for Barbara and Adele, it was not very easy?yet, they did survive. Of course, they had a bit of help from time to time from some local loggers who turned out to be a bit more intriguing than the first blush of fascination young girls have for young men when they meet.
Somehow this story reminded me most of ?A Girl of the Limberlost? by Gene Stratton Porter, and I?m trying to figure out why. The two stories had nothing to do with each other except perhaps the years the stories were set in. I think, that maybe it was the comparison of Elnora in ?Limberlost? with Barbara in ?Spirit of the North.? They were both fighting battles, and in a slim way, both were fighting to stay alive and succeed with nothing more than their wits and good common sense. Elnora had to survive her mother?s mental illness and the two girls, Barbara and Adele had to survive their dead uncle?s mental illness and how it affected their survival and happiness. The women had grit and spunk and determination?so much so?that nothing was going to stop them, not illness, not love, not isolation/fear/money. These are all the traits women had to have to survive around the turn of the last century. And, I think, this is why I?m so drawn to that time period.
Overall, the story was a fun read and I really enjoyed it.
My thanks to the author for this lovely copy of ?The Spirit of the North? and to Review the Book.com for this opportunity to review the book.
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