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Wanderers Eastward, Wanderers West by Kathleen Winsor

>> Thursday, March 22, 2007

Kathleen Winsor is best known for writing Forever Amber which was published in 1944 and despite being banned in many places as pornographic, became one of the bestselling novels of the 40’s. You don’t hear much about her other books, but when I ran across a used copy of Wanderers Eastward, Wanderers West at Powells a year or so ago, I bought it.

This is my 3rd Chunkster Challenge book and at 918 pages it’s a big old rambling historical fiction saga. The book takes place in post Civil War New York and Montana and revolves around the many members of an extended family and their acquaintances. There are lots of characters to keep track of and some pop in and out throughout the book. The book was interesting enough and I’m glad I finally got around to reading it. Unfortunately, I felt that even the primary characters were a bit less than complete. There were a lot of storylines that progressed and intersected in the 20+ years in the story so it was difficult to identify a clear hero or heroine. Their lives, loves, traumas and triumphs were more of a background to the historical setting of the book than the other way around. I enjoyed parts of the book, but I didn’t love the whole of it.


Booklogged 3/22/2007 9:03 PM  

That last statement, "I enjoyed parts of the book, but didn't love the whole or it." That's exactly how I felt about The Time Traveler's Wife. I'll bet you are grateful to have that big chunkster behind you.

Joy 3/23/2007 5:21 AM  

Good for you, Suzi! I have discovered that I do not like to read anything over 450 pages (or so) that has small print. It's just too overwhelming and frankly just too drawn out. I would love it if the authors of these mega books would break them up into that I could handle. :)

SuziQoregon 3/23/2007 7:15 PM  

Booklogged: Lately it seems like I've felt that way about several books - I'm following up the Chunkster with fast and light reading for at least a couple of books.

Joy: Some of the Chunksters are overly drawn out, but I really like the Big Ol' Books.

nessie 3/23/2007 8:06 PM  

there are certain chunksters where that has happened to me. it frustrates me because the reason I love to read thick books is because I fall in love with them and remember them forever.

i would recommend the book the proud breed. you'll adore it and see what i mean.

Bookfool 3/24/2007 4:59 PM  

So, it's a skipster, eh? ;)

SuziQoregon 3/26/2007 7:00 PM  

Nessie: thanks for the recommendation.

Bookfool: yes :-)

Amelia 3/30/2007 5:41 PM  

I loved Forever Amber and wanted to find another book by this author - so I had put this one on my wishlist. Thanks for your honest review. I'm not going to rush to pick it up anytime soon. It's too bad it wasn't as enjoyable as Forever Amber!

SuziQoregon 4/01/2007 9:08 AM  

Amelia: She's really only known for Forever Amber - none of her other books got much attention at all. This one was OK, but not good.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to leave a comment. I read and respond them here although not always right away. If you would prefer an email response let me know.

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