A Sudden Country

A Sudden Country

A Novel

Book - 2005
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A vivid and revelatory novel based on actual events of the 1847 Oregon migration, A Sudden Country follows two characters of remarkable complexity and strength in a journey of survival and redemption. James MacLaren, once a resourceful and ambitious Hudson's Bay Company trader, has renounced his aspirations for a quiet family life in the Bitterroot wilderness. Yet his life is overturned in the winter of 1846, when his Nez Perce wife deserts him and his children die of smallpox. In the grip of a profound sorrow, MacLaren, whose home once spanned a continent, sets out to find his wife. But an act of secret vengeance changes his course, introducing him to a different wife and mother: Lucy Mitchell, journeying westward with her family. Lucy, a remarried widow, careful mother, and reluctant emigrant, is drawn at once to the self-possessed MacLaren. Convinced that he is the key to her family's safe passage, she persuades her husband to employ him. As their hidden stories and obsessions unfold, and pasts and cultures collide, both Lucy and MacLaren must confront the people they have truly been, are, and may become. Alive with incident and insight, presenting with rare scope and intimacy the complex relations among nineteenth-century traders, immigrants, and Native Americans, A Sudden Country is, above all, a heroic and unforgettable story of love and loss, sacrifice and understanding.
Publisher: New York : Random House, 2005.
ISBN: 9781400063222
1400063221
Characteristics: 366 p. :,ill., maps ;,24 cm.

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AmelieLyle
Jun 23, 2015

This marvelous & memorable first novel is at first glance a story of the Oregon migrations of the 1840's. The reader will quickly realize that it is more about the journey that each heart must make through the wilderness of the life we are given. If you are looking for the typical western, this book is not for you, the characters and story will haunt you long after the last page.

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