>> 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.