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Hannah Fowler (The Kentuckians #2)

4.33  ·  Rating Details  ·  350 Ratings  ·  58 Reviews
Samuel Moore and his daughter Hannah set out for the border country with a party led by George Rogers Clark but left to follow the Kentucky River to Boones' Fort. As the story opens, Hannah is nursing her father, injured when an axe slips and cuts his leg. By the time Tice Fowler, on his way to Logan's Fort, stumbles upon them alone in the wilderness, Samuel is dying from ...more
Hardcover, 219 pages
Published 1956 by Houghton Mifflin Company
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 755)
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Jun 10, 2014 Susan rated it really liked it
Hannah Fowler! Somebody needs to turn this book into a movie.

Hannah and her father are moving from the Pennsylvania/Virginia border to Kentucky, to a place where a man can get clear title to his land, with no arguments as to which country or territory he belongs to. Land title. Yes, all it took was discrepancies about land title to make people move west.

Along the way, there are mentions of Daniel Boone, George Rogers Clark, and many names that I recognize as place names in Kentucky near where
Feb 27, 2015 Heather rated it it was amazing
I really liked this book. It came up on my Goodreads recommendation list. The summary interested me but the fact it was written in the 1950 also intrigued me. The copy I checked out at the library was an original 1956 printing. It had that good smell that reminds me of books I would check out as a kid. The language was more difficult than a lot of the historical romances written today and it took me a while to get use to the pattern but worth the effort. I think part of the reason I liked it was ...more
Jun 02, 2010 Rene rated it liked it
Shelves: novels
3+. Published in 1956, it is a story of Hannah Fowler, a frontier woman and her family, their dealings with the land and the Shawnee and Cherokee Indians before Kentucky became a state (circa 1770). I enjoyed the descriptions of them living and moving around the land in West Virginia (a favorite backpacking location for me). I also enjoyed the simple, sweet relationships she had with her husband and neighbors. I appreciated many little pearls of wisdom she had in her no-nonsense life and her lov ...more
May 20, 2016 Mitzi rated it it was amazing
Re-read Sept 2014 - This is actually the 3rd time I've read this since I first read it in 2012. I loved it just as much this time as the first. I can't say enough good things about it, really - if you haven't read it, you are missing out! :)

It's a shame that Janice Holt Giles isn't a more well known author. I enjoyed her novel The Kentuckians very much, but Hannah Fowler is a step above. I am amazed at her ability to write in dialect and have it come off not as annoying, but endearing. The relat
Oct 07, 2008 Art rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone wanting to know about Kentucky around the time of Daniel Boone
Shelves: kentucky
I had read this book before however I forgot most of it.
Janice Holt Giles is just like Lois Lowry, Ann Ridnaldi and Pearl S. Buck.
I enjoyed this book about Hannah Fowler who like myself came from Pennsylvania.
Her Father and Her travelled the Ohio River and they got off on the Kentucky River while the rest went to the Falls of the Ohio. The cities there today are Jeffersonville, IN and Louisville, KY.
The Winter of 1779-1780 reminds me of "The Long Winter" w/Laura Ingells Wilder and "The Forgotten
Karen Case
Jun 27, 2014 Karen Case rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book, it was the perfect mix between romance and adventure that everyone seems to be looking for. The way that Giles wrote her characters was pretty amazing, you get to see and understand and change along with them. You can think along with their reasoning and understand why they do what they do.
She also did an amazing job at writing what I believe to be one of the most difficult character types to write and get away with, the strong woman who can do everything on her ow
Sep 06, 2010 Lauri rated it liked it
My mother read and re-read this book throughout out my childhood - when she was sad or ill. I sit by her bedside in her last days, watching her sleep, and pick up the large print version I tracked down for her a few years ago. I may have read it in high school. I don't remember. I read it now to try to see what gave her such comfort so long ago.
part time librarian
Nov 19, 2013 part time librarian rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Very true that this is a book you can read several times. Our Library has several of Janice Holt Giles books and I hope they never decide to discard them because they are priceless@@ Highly Recommend to anyone who wants to know how it was to struggle during the first settlements. This was my favorite of her books but they were all great!!
Jan 15, 2012 Kelley rated it really liked it
Great book. The story of a woman in the wilderness of Kentucky in the days of Daniel Boone (1778ish). Took me a few chapters to really get into her speaking dialect, but a great story. In many ways it reminded me of "These Is My Words." Both are about strong women doing amazing things and thinking that they're perfectly normal.
Rebecca Lentz
Apr 16, 2014 Rebecca Lentz rated it it was amazing
Read as a teenager, it was on my grandmother's shelf...found the sequel to this years later by chance at the Canterbury Shaker Village, The Believers. What a find, this is a great story.
Aug 16, 2014 Taryn rated it really liked it
One of my favorite blogs recommended this book (, and I'm so glad I read it. Leila (on the blog) says "But what I love is Hannah’s independent spiritedness that she puts at the service of a strong and tender love. She is a paragon of what it means to submit to a manly man without losing one iota of your essential spark — in fact, finding fulfillment that you otherwise would know nothing about!"

Yup. Exactly. What she said.

I don't agree with all the conventions of Hannah
Apr 08, 2015 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adult-fiction
I really enjoyed the simplistic pacing of the first part of this book, as it gave me a hands on, earthy feeling of the daily struggle and fortitude and acceptance that is life. I appreciated the characterization of love that starts with a choice and endures because of that continual choice--without romanticizing chemistry or emotional drama--just two people persevering and working hard toward the same goals. It was a refreshing tone, helped by the distinct and unpretentious dialect and demeanors ...more
Miss Lemon
Jun 03, 2016 Miss Lemon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My cup of tea. Settling the frontier - this time it's Kentucky. Any book that is of the 'Little House in the Book Woods' genre I lean towards. This one is well done. Janice writes easily and gives enough description to make it very believable but not too much that you want to skim through paragraphs. I was deep in the wild country with Hannah throughout most of this book. . .2011 was far away.
Recommended by my mother-in-law because we both enjoyed "Jump Off Creek" by Molly Gloss. Loved the cadence and twangy dialect of this story set in early America as settlers move into Indian country. Hannah Fowler is strong and healthy in mind and body, practical, a survivalist through and through. Chop wood, carry water, pro-create, conquer~~a glimpse into why our species WAS successful.
Jun 04, 2014 Ladybassplayer rated it it was amazing
I loved this story. I have read this book twice now and have enjoyed it both times. I recommend this book 100 percent.
Another reviewer said this is "like Laura Ingalls Wilder for grownups". I agree. There's adventure, and a subtle romance. The story is written very well and the characters have been written marvelously. Janice Holt Giles is going on my "Best Authors" list.

The pace is pretty relaxed, but I was never bored. It feels very period-accurate.

Hannah herself was fascinating. I like to think we would be friends, the two of us, but I'm afraid she'd think me a sluggard! There's no holding a candle to Hannah
Jan 25, 2016 Karen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent story; very interesting. Kept my attention.
Sep 07, 2009 Jen rated it really liked it
I wanted to love this one. With all of the reviews I read, I was thinking it would be up there with These Is My Words, but I didn't LOVE it like I thought I would.

I did really enjoy it, though. The characters were great, and the love story of it was more real to me than most love stories I've read. It wasn't very detailed, but she did a great job of making their love comfortable and sweet to read about.

I have a feeling that a lot of people I know would love it, and it would make for a good book
Nancy Zigmund
Jun 24, 2016 Nancy Zigmund rated it it was amazing
Great read.
Jul 29, 2013 Sharon rated it it was amazing
A somewhat unorthodox choice, but I loved ,loved loved it. The story of an early settler in Kentucky during the Revolutionary war. Written in the fifties, extremely well written with a lot more psychological content that you would expect. Well researched and it all rang true. Made me review how much books of this type have meant to me over my life time. I then realized that I am actually a first generation on both sides of my family that didn't actually grow up on the land.
Orrin Grey
Apr 26, 2011 Orrin Grey rated it liked it
My wife is much more likely to read historical fiction that doesn't contain monsters or premature burials or something than I am, and she suggested that I should take a look at this one. It was very enjoyable to read. While the plot is probably pretty standard frontier times stuff, the period details were interesting, and the very placid pacing of it was actually a pleasure (too much alliteration there). I also liked the way the dialogue was rendered.
Jun 05, 2008 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who like excellent character description and development.
Recommended to Mike by: 82 year old Mother
Excellent writing with period language and great of those I cannot put down. A deep insight into the difficulty of surviving backwoods life in the 18th century, and a testimonial to the American spirit of independence during those times. No matter your situation, you cannot read this book and help but say to yourself "I have had it made living in this era."
Stephanie Ricker
Nov 14, 2011 Stephanie Ricker rated it really liked it
I found an old copy of Hannah Fowler by Janice Holt Giles, which has been hanging around my parents’ house for years. I think I may have read a little bit of it when I was young because the beginning felt familiar. I can see why I gave it up, though I enjoyed it tremendously this time around; it’s sort of like a Laura Ingalls Wilder book for grown-ups.

Jan 23, 2009 Diana rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who enjoys a good story about the American pioneer.
Recommended to Diana by: found at library
This is the story of Hannah who starts a journey through the American wilderness with her father. She had been raised in old Virginia and her ideas and speech are what you would expect from someone who was rarely in company. Her strength and inner beauty are incredible. Janice Holt Giles created beautiful characters.
Feb 13, 2010 Peggy rated it really liked it
Recommended to Peggy by: Jen
I have to admit that I had this 2 or 3 times from the library before I actually read it because it's such an ugly book. But I really enjoyed reading about Southern 'pioneers' but the love story is so sweet and gentle. It's not a fast paced book but the slower pace follows the time period.
Tracy Kriese
Jun 20, 2009 Tracy Kriese rated it it was amazing
Recommended by a friend when I was one week overdue with my first baby, just dragging through the hours and days of waiting...and it was wonderful! Couldn't put it down, and suddenly being hugely pregnant with nothing but time on my hands wasn't so bad after all!
Aug 28, 2010 Mary rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, history
In the Kentucky wilderness 1778, Hannah and her father are moving west. The father is badly injured by a slip of his ax. A few days later another man comes upon them. This a tale of survival and starting life in the wilderness. Written in the 1950s.
Mar 15, 2013 Bernadette rated it it was amazing
Shelves: keepers
This book is excellent if you like historical American history. This book is also free on the internet. Just google it, it is on a website from the University of Kentucky.

Find it, readit you' ll be glad you did
Julie Biles
Oct 07, 2012 Julie Biles rated it really liked it
An excellent historical fiction novel draws me in and this one did, so much so that I read the two sequels. I feel like I traveled in time. Giles use of setting, characterization and historical context is remarkable.
Dec 26, 2009 Anna rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Anna by: My mother, she recommended so many of my favorites!
ONe of my favorites from childhood, I grew to love and admire those women that came before me to settle this great land of America. I bet I have read it at least once a year since the first time!
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Other Books in the Series

The Kentuckians (10 books)
  • The Kentuckians (Kentuckians, #1)
  • The Land Beyond the Mountains (Kentuckians, #3)
  • The Believers (Kentuckians, #4)
  • Johnny Osage (Kentuckians, #5)
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