Bess by Charles Cranston Jett
Posted by brriske
Bess Parker is only 21 years old when she sets out by herself in 1908, leaving the safety of her childhood home for southwestern North Dakota to establish a homestead. And it takes all the strength she can muster to succeed–facing the perils of the vast prairie, making her homestead productive, conquering the dangers of the frontier, flirting with romance, struggling with the emotional needs of her heart and body, and meeting the challenges of life on the prairie. But this unique young woman has a steely determination, and her story is the epitome of courage and grit in a difficult and sometimes cruel time in the history of the west.
Bess is a standalone historical novel that will grab your attention from the very first page. I must confess I don’t usually read historical novels unless they have a pretty good share of romance, nevertheless, the story of Bess was so vivid and touching that I couldn’t put it down. Bess is pretty much what any woman would like to be. She is strong, independent, hardworking and good at almost everything she does. She can play the piano, has great grades, helps her father on his farm and her mother in the kitchen. However, her talents aren’t the only thing that makes her different from the other women in Dakota. She isn’t interested in being courted or dreaming about being kissed and pampered by a man like all the other girls her age. Truth being told, I admire her determination in standing on her own feet instead of depending on a man, like many women did in the 1900s. There is nothing with wanting a family, but it is very wrong that people try to make a woman feel she is wrong for wanting to be strong and independent.
I love how the author painted Bess as a true heroine, someone to be admired and whose steps must be followed. I was truly amazed that the author tried to make Bess an unconventional lady to the point of tangling her with a very well-known taboo of that period. I thought it was quite strange that she was so strong and fierce while hiding her feelings for her best friend. She was no coward, but I wonder if she didn’t want her secret out in the open because of fear or simple because she knew people will never understand and she didn’t want to go through the trouble they will cause. This book was very realistic. I really wish to congratulate the author for the amazing research that he did in order to pain not only the places, but also the mentality of the 1900s. I truly wish to recommend this books to those who love historical novels, unconventional heroines and stories that push towards some self growth and a wonderful adventure.
Reviewer of Romance Authors That Rock