Sunday, 6 May 2012

The Bride Price by Tracey Jane Jackson - a US Civil War Novel

I have to admit that I am a time travel junkie.  It doesn't seem to matter the genre, location, nor the time period, I love time travel.  Must be that escapist in me.  When I saw this book at OmniLit, I figured it would be an interesting read, and as a bonus, I might learn something about the American Civil War. 

The story starts in modern day Portland, Oregon and moves swiftly to January 31, 1863 Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  Sophie Ford is bed ridden with serious heart failure and awaiting a transplant.  Somehow, despite her illness, she manages to disappear from her house without a trace, leaving her husband Jamie despondent.

Several lifetimes earlier, Sophie awakens in a snow covered field in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  Fortunate for her, she is quickly discovered by Richard Madden and is carried to the house of Doctor Michael Wade.  While she is cared for she comes to realize that she is no longer in  her house and thinks that at first she is at one of the Civil War reenactments that she so enjoys.  It doesn't take her very long to realize that it's not a reenactment, but the real thing.  She has traveled back almost one hundred and fifty years to a time she has studied in minute detail.

I didn't learn a lot about this war but I did learn that no matter how much you think you know about a specific time period, it's the small details that will give you away.  Sophie continued to use phrases and wording that wasn't in use during this point in history.  She knew too much about the goings on of the war effort.  Information was slow to travel during the 1800's, and even slower to the women, yet she was fully informed.  President Lincoln was her favourite person of that time period and she studied him every chance she could.  She realized that she was going to have to work harder to keep her secret.

I was fascinated by the clothing worn by the women of this time period.  I can't imagine needing someone to help me dress each day.  eeks.  All those layers of clothing for modesties sake even on the hottest of summer days.

This is the first part in a series that now includes seven novels.  I found it very interesting that author Tracey Jane Jackson is not American born, she is from New Zealand, though her father was American born.

Thanks to the author for the use of the cover image.


Karen Greenberg said...

They did heart transplants as early as the Civil War? I think that caught my attention more than anything else.

I just did a lesson with my students about the clothing women wore in that time period. I was amazed to find out sometimes the clothing could be upwards of 20 pounds. Wow!

Martha @ Hey, I want to read that said...

I couldn't imagine wearing all those layers in the summer, blech. And how odd would it be having someone dress you. I'm not much of a time travel fan but this sounds interesting.

Roslyn said...

I love time travel and history , combine them & I am hooked! have you read any of Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series? Fabulous, detail & incredible research ! I have them all on audiobook.
I will check out the Civil War Brides

Felicity Grace Terry said...

Time Travel is a concept I just can't get my head around but this does sound like a good read.

Unknown said...

I read the entire series a few years ago and cannot wait to see it in film
Lee Anne, Kitchener