Monday, June 30, 2014

"Standing Stones"

I love to read good historical fiction because I love to travel to other places and other times, but in so many books, if the setting is accurate the story falls flat or vice versa. 

In “Standing Stones”, author Beth Camp got every just right. She actually takes the reader to that time and place, where you feel the cold and the ache that the characters feel, where you smell the things they smell and taste the things they taste. For the price of a book, I feel as if I got to not only travel around the world, but I did it in a time machine! Not only that, Beth tells the moving story of the McDonnell family with such skill that I feel as if I have met each and every one of them.

Caring as much about the main characters as I did meant this saga was sometimes painful to read. Yet I couldn't put it down. Set in Scotland during the mid-1800’s, Moira and her brothers are only one family affected by the new Lord, whose mission is pretty much to run off all of the locals so that he can raise sheep on the land where they have lived for hundreds of years. It's hard to imagine that other human beings could inflict such physical and emotional pain on others. I conjured up pictures of how hard life had been for my own father living in Germany in the early 1900s before his family moved to America.

And finally, believe it or not, 30 years ago I went to college with a girl of Scottish heritage who had siblings named Moira and Colin, just like two of the McDonnells. Beth certainly did her research! I cannot wait to read the next in her series, “Years of Stone”. 

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