Crown of Dust
Word spreads quickly wh ...more
In the late 19th century, a young man arrives in Emaline's town of Motherlode, a small mining start-up near the grass valley. Alex, the young man, is running from a past he doesn't want to remember, and hiding a secret that could ruin his life, and take his freedom. For Alex is not a young man, but a young woman. The story is about Emaline and Alex, and all the other inhabitants of Motherlode, with their many desires, ambitions, dreams, cares, a ...more
Crown of Dust is set in the fictional gold rush town of Motherlode, California, which is populated by hopeful miners, a drunk preacher, and Emaline, the proprietess of The Victoria hotel. Emaline prides herself in making the town what it is, and in providing every service the men require.
In walks Alex, a slight, quiet boy who rarely speaks.
The reader soon finds out that Alex is, in fact, a woman who desperately needs to keep her past a secret. Alex’s disguise is quietly accepted—after all, Mot...more
I think this novel is what happens when an actual woman gets to sit down and write a novel about the West, with an eye not towards producing a "western," but to writing a novel about the true lived experience of the West. I think Wallace Stegner would have been quite proud of this novel. Here you ...more
Worth your time! =)
Note: This was a Goodreads Give-Away. Not only did I receive the book in record speed, but Mary Volmer included two ...more
I’m someone who hails from Western Kentucky so tales of Gold Rush days have never been prominent on my list of interesting topics to explore. But this year I live in Central California, so my interest in this story was piqued a bit more, especially when it became apparent "Crown of Dust" was set close to the not-too-distant-fr ...more
The Sisters Brothers takes place around the same time period. I don't normally read Westerns/gold rush books, not because I don't like them but they just aren't my favorite.
The Sisters Brothers
Touch which is about a town that was founded during a gold rush but went on to become a lumber town. Touch
and Blindspot, which takes place in the late 18th century Boston but is about a girl who dresses like a boy to become a painter ...more
I can't really fault the book or the writing but it just lacked.... something! You know? Before you argue that maybe it was the subject or the plot, it wasn't. It was something I wanted to read and I'm interested in but across the board it just didn't have that sparkle.
Alex was of course the most interesting character. After a miscarriage, she ditched her overbearing and religious Grandmother and landed in the small mining town of Motherlode. Except she decides to disguise herself as a man and h ...more