Mary's Reviews > The Wives of Henry Oades

The Wives of Henry Oades by Johanna Moran
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's review
Jan 10, 12

bookshelves: book-club, historical-fiction, drama
Read in January, 2012

More like 3.5 stars.
In the late 19th century, Henry and his wife Meg along with their two children are transferred to New Zealand from London. Meg has her doubts about the whole adventure, but figures that two years will pass quickly and then they can return to England. Unfortunately, she and the children are kidnapped by the Maori. Circumstances cause Henry to believe that they are all dead and he sails away to America to start a new life. There he marries a young widow and becomes a successful farmer. Years later, Meg and the children show up on the doorstep of the now happily married couple.
This was a fairly intense book - from Meg's homesickness and forced march through the New Zealand jungle to her anticipation during the voyage to America and her subsequent shock, it's a roller coaster of emotions. Gritty historical details really made me cringe, but the engaging characters and compelling storyline kept me reading.
This should be a great book for discussion.

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