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Mrs. Mike (Mrs. Mike #1)

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  11,902 ratings  ·  1,531 reviews
A moving love story set in the Canadian wilderness, Mrs. Mike is a classic tale that has enchanted millions of readers worldwide. It brings the fierce, stunning landscape of the Great North to life-and tenderly evokes the love that blossoms between Sergeant Mike Flannigan and beautiful young Katherine Mary O'Fallon.
Paperback, 320 pages
Published January 8th 2002 by Berkley (first published 1947)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jan 27, 2008 Lucy rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone
Shelves: favorites
This wasn't on my list of scheduled reads but while I was in a bookstore last month to purchase a book for a Christmas exchange, I saw Mrs. Mike on the shelves and felt compelled to buy this much beloved book.

I'm often asked what my favorite book is. I always answer that I don't have one; there are many books I love but they are too different to say one is superior to another.

I have changed my mind. Mrs. Mike is my favorite book.

A coming of age story set in the Canadian North in the year 1907, K
Tadiana ✩ Night Owl☽
Mrs. Mike has been a lifelong favorite book. I've got a battered paperback that's been in my personal library for years, and I've been curious to see how well the novel holds now that I'm older and a little more critical of my reading material. The answer is: very well, especially considering that this book was written in 1947.

This semi-fictional (reportedly mostly fictional) autobiographical novel follows the life, loves, adventures, sorrows and joys of the real-life Katherine Mary O'Fallon Fl
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
I first read this when I was about 13 or 14 years old and remembered it fondly. After all these years I was afraid it might be too sanitized for my grown-up self. I needn't have worried. Pollyanna Sunshine is nowhere to be found, and my years of life experience only made the book more meaningful for me. This is a realistic account of the joys and hardships of life in northern Alberta in the early 1900s. I grew so attached to Mike and Katherine that I wanted the story to keep going. It's not surp ...more

4.5 Stars! Just a good old fashioned sweet romance!

An oldie but goodie. It was charming, heartbreaking, full of sacrifice and struggles, and a couple devoted to each other through it all!

Who wouldn't fall in love with this?!
 photo Mountedpolice_zpsd07b40c2.jpg
3.5 stars, rounded down for veering from the facts given to them by the real Katherine O'Flannagan, and with my sympathies to her: Some story-spoilers in here, so beware: (view spoiler) ...more
Did you know that mosquitoes are SO bad in the far north that people can DIE from them? Me neither.
Did you know that if you're trapped in a forest fire you should find the widest part of a river and stay there, but don't ever hide in a well or basement? I know. Who would've thought?
And ...hypothetically saying, of course...if you needed to keep your dead away from animals and had no time (or ground is too frozen) to bury them, the best place is on the roof or hung in a thin tree that bears can't
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This book is well-written. it's interesting, and it has very high reviews. I think I might be the only female in the world to not like this book. Here is my summary:

The book starts off with a 16-year old Boston girl in the 1900's taking the train to the Canadian "Wild West" to live with her uncle. The girl is the narrator and she is clever, and funny.

Kate gets to Canada and is told there aren't a lot of women up there because they are "too soft for this land". Kate meets Mike, a Canadian Mount
Apr 16, 2010 Werner rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Historical fiction fans
Recommended to Werner by: My wife
Benedict and Nancy Freedman, the two partners in the husband-wife writing team who co-wrote this and several other novels, were born, respectively, in 1919 and 1920; so when writing historical fiction, like Dickens and Stephen Crane, they chose to set it in the generation immediately before their own, where the world they were writing about was still a living memory, and could be researched through living voices. As the Goodreads description above indicates, the primary setting here is northern ...more
Mar 20, 2015 Tweety rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: All who like a good yarn
Recommended to Tweety by: Dorcas
This is the best book I have ever read about life in Canada. Every thing came alive, jumped out of the pages and enveloped me into their world. I half wish I could go and see where they all lived. But, there is a darkness that is not entirely visible in the first half.
Mrs. Mike was such a lovable character. And you could see her grow throughout the book and become a better person. A few times I found things so funny I nearly died laughing. Having humor helped lighten the darkness. The only part
Lady Heather
Mar 07, 2013 Lady Heather rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: historical fiction, romance
I read this story in *humph-humph..clears throat* 1984, in Grade 9 English.

I later found it in our local libraries 'give-away' bin. My copy is the original 1947 publication, and has been re-bound and taped up too many times.

My youngest daughter has since read it, and she too has fallen in love with it as well.

This book is such a wonderful treasure that I hold dear to my heart.
This is my favorite book of all times. I wish I could find it in ebook form. I would never take it off my kindle, iPad or iphine
I was going to give this a 3.5 but will leave it at 4 as the ending brought it up for me. This is a fantastic reading experience in terms of understanding the challenges of living in the remote Canadian wilderness at the turn of the century. I really enjoyed learning about the Indians and their culture and their relationships with the "white" settlers/trappers etc. I thought it was portrayed as mostly a positive and respectful one. For this era, the women were exceptionally strong. The story is ...more
A sweet read that struck me as simple and perhaps even simplistic, at first. As the love story of Mike, a Canadian Mountie, and his young Irish bride unfolds, the story gains momentum and depth. "Mrs. Mike" is a city girl, Boston bred. The stark wilderness of northern Canada is at first a great adventure, but the monumental challenges accumulate. Katherine, full of vivacity, jumps right in to the community life of the remote outpost in which they serve. Serve she must; the settlers are constantl ...more
It was wonderful--I had tears in my eyes for most of the last half of the book. Such a hard and beautiful place, the North, with such tough, caring and dignified people.

Kathy's trip back to Boston was brilliant; that scene where she knocks on a mansion door in Beacon Hill and is refused a glass of water--and then she remembers all the empty trappers cabins up North stocked with wood and provisions and never locked so that any stranger can come in, take shelter and be warm and fed. Kathy matures
I read about this book in the Oprah magazine and got to it before there were a million holds on it at the library. It was great! A lot of times when I read books written pre 1960, I have to work to keep my attention on the page. It’s amazing how writing styles have changed in 50+ years. But this was a gripping book that kept me reading and reading.

It’s based on the true story of Katherine who, in 1907 at the age of 16 moved from Boston to Alberta to live with her uncle. She moves because the wea
Rashmirekha Basu
In my infinite wisdom,I chose to read this "heart warming" romantic saga of Boston girl who married a "rugged Canadian Mountie " as a light read to take my mind off another ghastly round of semester exams. If you are in need of further proof of my imbecilic notions I was reading this in tandem with Carson Mc Culler's The Heart is a Lonely Hunter .My cup runneth over.

Before I start ranting and frothing at the mouth let me just ask the wise folk here who apparently read this book when they were 10
Apr 29, 2008 JSou rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to JSou by: My mom
I have read this book about ten times since I was a little girl, it was the first book my mom ever recommended to me, so maybe that's a big part of why I love it so much. This is one story that just gets better and better every time I read it. It's one of those that affect you SO much more after you have your own kids.

This is probably the only book I have read as an adult that made me WEEP uncontrollably as I read (but still couldn't put it down). I'm sure everyone around me thought I was a nutc
I really enjoyed this book. It was one that I really wanted to finish and did so quickly despite the fact that I have a 2 year old and that I am going to school full time. It was neat to learn that it is based on the actual experiences of a woman and her family so it made it so much more real to me. I felt like it helped me to appreciate all the blessings that I have and appreciate family more. Sometimes the small little irritations of daily life seem like such a big deal, but when you step back ...more
Dec 03, 2009 Beth rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Beth by: Britt
Usually when I read I have a pretty good idea from the first hundred or so pages whether I’ll like a book or not. Sometimes my opinion changes just from a bad ending, but that's atypical.

This book, though, took me on a bit of a roller coaster ride. It started out on a high. From the first paragraph, I was hooked; just listen to the fun, engaging narrative style:

“The worst winder in fifty years, the old Scotsman had told me. I’d only been around for sixteen, but it was the worst I’d seen, and I
I remember my Mom handing me this book when I was a teenager and telling me I would thank her later. A second read was just as good, maybe better. I loved how the Indians and the Americans got along so well. I thought their relationships made the book worth reading.

There is some tough material in here, especially if you have a fondness for kids. But, I think it is worth reading and an enjoyable book, to be sure.

276: I remembered what she had said about the little things being the important thin
Full of adventure and hardship at the beginning of the 20th century in Canada. I'm a bit disappointed that this is a work of ficiton. If you are looking for a non-fiction book along the same theme, read Tisha: The Wonderful True Love Story of a Young Teacher in the Alaskan Wilderness
Denise Gianelli
Mrs. Mike is the true story of Katherine Mary Flannigan. She weds Mountie Mike Flannigan and travels to the extreme Canadian wilderness in the early 1900s. This is a beautiful read about love, Joy, loss, grief, devotion and survival. This touching story could be read numerous times.
" Only once in a long while does the lover of books come across a novel like this one. Mrs. Mike is an unforgettable story. " Boston Herald
This is so true!
This is a beautiful novel based on a true story of life, love, devotion and courage in the extreme Canadian wilderness 40+ years ago. This is one of my favorite books and I will keep it on my bookshelf to re-read down the road. A romance, an adventure, tragic at times, It gives an honest depiction of what people had to deal with while 'blazing the trails' in the rugged terrain of the open frontier. It makes me realize how fortunate I am for the many comforts that I have!
Tammy  King Carlton
This was a book club read, and was familiar in a comforting way because of the years I spent in Alaska. The Canadian Frontier was not for wimps. My heart ached for Mrs. Mike and the challenges that she faced trying to keep her marriage alive, and raise small children among one of the world's harshest climates. From personal experience, you just don't realize how hard it is in the arctic circle until you've tried to live there.
Oct 22, 2015 Emmy marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 20th-century, canada
I got about half way through, but I was just so bored. I literally stopped listening to this during Kathy's labor. Which was the most action that had occurred all book. There was just no plot. Someone said to me this was a book about Canada. I'd say that would be a more accurate synopsis than the one given. Canada was the largest character, but it just wasn't enough to drive this book forward for me.
Sep 23, 2007 Linda rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone.
My mom read this book when she was growing up and she passed it on to me. What a fabulous telling of one girl's true-life adventures of marrying a Royal Canadian Mounted Policeman and following him into the wilds of the Northern Territory at the beginning of the 20th century. This book gets a frequent re-read and I always cry. And it contains perhaps the best character name ever - Oh-Be-Joyful.
This is my favorite book I've read this year and I laugh because it was written in 1947. It was wonderful, full of everything that makes a story touch my heart. Love in the wilderness, weather, loss, joy. It was all there and more. Truly a classic and one that will remain with me for a very long time.
Jan 21, 2014 Ian rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans-of-these-is-my-words, readers of historical fisction
When I first decided to read this book I was a little nervous it would turn out much more Romance than Historical Fiction and that I wouldn't enjoy it. Partly because of the description given about the book. However I decided to give it a go and I am so glad I did!

Whilst Romance or Love is one of the themes in this book (but it is in most books if i'm honest) - its not the kind of love that you see in blockbuster romantic comedy films, but real love, which is hard work. The theme isn't so much l
Feb 18, 2009 Nicole rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Nicole by: Lucy
I bought this a few weeks ago because it was Lucy's favorite. Finally, I got around to reading it (My mini vacation after my vacation--hooray for Presidents Day)

I have to agree with Lucy--this is one of those unforgettable books! I did my daily stuff in a grateful daze yesterday--so contented with my lot in life. I am more blessed than I have ever realized!

I don't want to risk telling too much of the story.... Katherine Mary is a girl from Boston who goes into the 'North' to visit her uncle. The
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historical accuracy? 5 66 Jan 21, 2015 05:26AM  
Fiction Addiction: Mrs. Mike by Benedict Freedman 5 24 Oct 26, 2013 12:47AM  
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Benedict Freedman, the son and grandson of writers, was born in New York City in 1919. While in high school he studied accelerated courses for gifted boys and graduated with a medal for mathematics. At fourteen he entered Columbia University as a premed student, but had to drop out at sixteen because of his father's sudden death. For a time Benedict continued private study of higher mathematics. F ...more
More about Benedict Freedman...

Other Books in the Series

Mrs. Mike (3 books)
  • The Search for Joyful (Mrs. Mike, #2)
  • Kathy Little Bird (Mrs. Mike, #3)

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“You'll see, you'll come to understand. These big things, these terrible things, are not the important ones. If they were, how could one go on living? No, it is the small, little things that make up a day, that bring fullness and happiness to a life.” 23 likes
“When little things are so important, it's because there aren't any big ones.” 14 likes
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