Friday, May 2, 2008
Blog Tour Stop: Season of Sacrifice by Tristi Pinkston
I love history. But I can’t stand reading a history book. You know, like the ones we all got in high school or college. They were so boring and dry. You learn the facts, but you don’t really know what the people were like or how they felt.
When I was in college, I discovered The Work and The Glory series . . . and fell 100% in love with historical novels. I love a good story based on real historical facts and learning about the people who played a role during that time.
One of my favorite historical novelists is Tristi Pinkston. I devoured her first two novels, Nothing to Regret and Strength to Endure. I knew very little about the World War II era. The characters in both of these novels brought the setting and story to life, to the point that I felt like I was right there with them.
When Tristi told me about her newest novel, Season of Sacrifice, my first thought was, “Wow, she has this theme going with the titles of her books.” On a side note: I wonder if she got to pick out each book’s title? My very next thought was, “I wonder how she’s going to handle the whole pioneer and polygamy thing?”
Polygamy? Did I just say that? Yep, I did. Keep reading, my friend.
Season of Sacrifice is the story of Tristi’s ancestors, Benjamin Perkins, Mary Ann Williams, and Sarah Williams. The story begins in Trebeoth, Wales, where you learn about Ben and his love love for Miss Mary Ann Williams as he courts her, proposes, then leaves for America. The story of being a pioneer on the trail comes to life as we follow Ben during his voyage to America and his journey to Zion. Eventually, he saves enough money to send for the rest of his family and Mary Ann. After their happy reunion, life goes pretty well for the happy couple.
At this point, the story changes to Sarah’s perspective. We learn of her family’s hardships and Sarah’s strength as she helps care for her younger siblings. Eventually, Sarah’s family makes the journey to Utah, where they are once again together with Mary Ann and Ben. Soon after their arrival, Mary Ann and Ben are asked to relocate to the San Juan valley. The only complication is that Mary Ann is expecting another child and will need help on the trail, so she asks her sister Sarah to accompany them. Sarah is thrilled and excited about the adventure.
And what an adventure it is! The journey is filled with complication after complication, which are met with faith, prayer, and a determination to fulfill their assignment of settling the San Juan valley. After arriving and settling, Ben approaches Sarah to ask her to become his second wife.
Up to this point, I had found myself devouring the chapters, flipping back and forth between the chapter notes at the end of the book to see which parts were fact from journals and which were fictionalized. I was astounded by how closely the story followed the main characters’ journals and life history. But I got to this part and was afraid to move on.
Polygamy has always been a touchy subject for me. As a convert, it’s one of the things I get teased about the most from other friends and family. This is usually done in a nice way, but occasionally I run into someone who just doesn’t believe me when I say I’m an only wife and polygamy doesn’t exist in the LDS Church anymore. Because that person believes he knows the “real truth” about my church and I’m just a naïve innocent who had the blanket pulled over my head. Apparently, he doesn’t know me well enough if he really thinks that . . . but I digress. Polygamy is kind of a touchy subject for me.
I was very impressed with the way Tristi’s writing pulled out the emotions of not only Ben, Mary Ann, and Sarah—but also their parents and siblings. Ben didn't say, “I think you should be my second wife,” and Sarah just agreed. No. There was so much turmoil and soul searching involved. Tristi’s portrayal made me rethink how difficult this decision was for everyone. And honestly, as I read, I felt like Sarah’s family’s reactions were much like how my family would react if I would have been in her place. I found it fascinating and very well written.
But that’s all I can say, cause I can’t give away the ending—Tristi would hop the next plane to Kansas City and give me a good talking to!
Overall, I found this to be another incredible book by Tristi Pinkston. If you enjoy historical novels, this is one you shouldn't pass up. You can purchase Season of Sacrifice by clicking here.
Be sure to check out the next post for my interview with Tristi and a gift give-away!
Review Disclaimer: Sometimes a book I review has been sent to me for free by a publisher or an author. This in no way effects my review, which is my own opinion about whether the book was a good read for me, fit my tastes, and if I would recommend it to others. Other than possibly a free book, I am not compensated in any way for posting a review.