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4.29  ·  Rating details ·  209 Ratings  ·  93 Reviews
A single mother. An abandoned farmhouse. An epic battle with the northern wilderness.

Broke and desperate, Molly Bannister accepts the ironclad condition laid down in her great-aunt’s will: to receive her inheritance, Molly must spend one year in an abandoned, off-the-grid farmhouse in the remote backwoods of northern Alberta. If she does, she will be able to sell the farm
ebook, 328 pages
Published February 24th 2018 by Dundurn
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Angela M
Feb 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Every once in a while I read a book where the sense of place is so strong, so much a part of the story that you see it and feel it on every page. Elinor Florence has done a fabulous job of taking the reader to this remote place in Northern Canada. It’s cold and the landscape is utterly beautiful and the environment equally brutal at times. We see it through the eyes of Molly Bannister, a single mother who has lost her job and is struggling to insure that her 4 year old daughter Bridget who has s ...more
Diane S ☔
Jan 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-read
It is such a joy to find a story that includes so many of the things I love. Cold weather climates, I am fascinated with novels that are set in these climates, how people live and survive. This is set in Juniper, Canada a made up name but meant to represent early colonies such as Peace River, Manning, or Beaver lodge all located in Northern Alberta in Canada.

Early homesteaders, Molly inherits from her great aunt an original house and many farming acres in the above location. The stipulation requ
Feb 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Molly Bannister's life is unraveling. She has lost her job with an accounting firm in AZ, and her savings is dwindling fast. As a single parent, she is almost in panic mode when she receives word from a lawyer that her great-aunt left her a farm and house in northern Alberta, Canada. The will stipulates that she has to live on the old homestead for a full year before gaining ownership. With money dwindling and no other options, Molly and her 4-year old daughter Bridget move to Canada. The old fa ...more
Wildwood is one of those books that grabbed me as I began reading and pulled me in with the charm and natural feeling of the story. It’s a story about a young mother with a 4 year old daughter, obviously struggling with her life, who decides to uproot their Arizona existence for a never-seen farm in northern Canada. Why is the important factor. Well, apparently her great aunt, who carried the same name, has left her the property if she stays on the land, in the house for one year.

Of course nothi
Cathrine ☯️
3.5 🥧 🥧 🥧
Molly inherits an old farmhouse and its land. In order to gain title she has to live in it for a year. Being currently unemployed and facing eviction leaves little choice but to accept the challenge. Can she make it through the winter without electricity and plumbing with a five year old with issues?
From the book description “A single mother. An abandoned farmhouse. An epic battle with the northern wilderness” I was anticipating more grit and harsh living but this was more sentimental,
If you are looking for a whizz bang, thrill a minute story then WILDWOOD is not going to be for you. However, if you are looking for a story that draws you in from the very first page and gradually immerses you in a struggle for survival – then Bingo! You’ve found your book.

The main character is single mum Molly Bannister and she is at the end of her tether, as she has lost her job and unable to pay her rent so facing eviction. Out of the blue she gets a letter from a lawyer informing her she h
Dec 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
AUTHOR REVIEW -- I just sat down and read my Advance Reading Copy of Wildwood, seeing it in book form for the first time after not looking at the manuscript for several months. Reading the novel with fresh eyes, I was pleasantly surprised that there were no glaring errors or hideous plot inconsistencies! I still love my characters Molly and her little daughter Bridget, although I don't feel that any novel could really do justice to the brutal hardships experienced by our early Canadian homestead ...more
I enjoyed the unfamiliar world that Molly and Bridget walked into. Molly assumed that she had walked into prosperity while Bridget knew that she had tottered into agony when the two of them arrived in Alberta, their new home for the next 365 days. The isolated farmhouse cast off a terrifying chill as they took in their surroundings. It would be tough to live without some of life’s modern conveniences but in the end, the title to this valuable piece of property was worth a fortune and Bridget’s d ...more
Penny (Literary Hoarders)
This was great! Look for it to come out in February 2018. It was like a modern day Susanna Moodie. Good story, satisfying ending.
Most Americans are familiar with the Little House in the Prairie books, which was an idealized version of Laura Engles Wilder's life. Most Canadians, I would hope, are familiar with Susanna Moodie and her books such as Roughing it in the Bush, where she tells what life is really like as a pioneer.

This book is more like Susanna, then Laura, but they both share the love of the beauty of the wilderness. You get to look at this quiet, isolated farmland and all its beauty, through a year of basically
Sarah Sundin
Mar 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a glorious novel! With flawed and relatable characters, gorgeous description, and a loving but realistic look at a difficult lifestyle, Wildwood satisfies on every level. Through Molly’s modern eyes, we see the fortitude of pioneers in a refreshing way—and see our comfortable and rushed lives in a new way as well. Uplifting and thought-provoking, this is a novel to savor.
Cathy Geha
Mar 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wildwood by Elinore Florence

Molly is down on her luck with time running out when a fortuitous inheritance finds its way to her. The only glitch is that she has to live on the land for a year. Where is the land? Way up north in Canada where it gets very very cold indeed! Living in a home built in the early 1920’s might not sound horrible BUT the house has not been lived in for decades, has no indoor plumbing, is without electricity and relies on wood for heating and cooking. Molly has four year o
Jan 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a fascinating and entertaining read!

If you really want to experience the early days of Canadian homesteads then this is a great book to start. You get to live and breathe each and every experience with the characters and it was a really interesting way to discover early Canadian history and to see just what difficulties people in those times had

Full review to follow
Sep 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
As a child I read all the stories I could get my hands on about pioneering. I wished that I had been born earlier so I could ride on the wagon trains heading out West. Time and maturity have since cured me of that desire. For example, I like having a dentists and doctors that use modern methods of treatment and pain relief.

This story took me back to those memories of what pioneering life would be like, and superimposed that experience in the modern day. Molly's life is unraveling. She has one ch
Chelsea Hagen
Oct 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. The writing was so descriptive and flowed nicely. It made me realize how lucky I am to live on my beautiful acreage.
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc-net-galley
Wildwood, Elinor Florence's second novel, tells the tale of Molly Bannister, a single mother in a serious bind after losing her job. Molly is unexpectedly the recipient of a bequest of her Great Aunt Mary Margaret's farm in a remote area of Alberta, near the town of Juniper. The only catch is that in order to have the land titled in her name, she must live on the property for a full calendar year. With her young daughter Bridget tow, Molly pulls up stakes in Arizona and moves to Wildwood. The st ...more
Breakaway Reviewers
A must-read magnificent novel inspired by her own life and ancestry in Canada

I did not want this book to come to an end as it is so incredibly beautifully written. Her passionate inspiration to write the book oozes through each page abundantly full of history, hardship, sadness, joy, relationships and courage.

From the modern day urban United States to Canada’s northernmost agricultural area and the last area to be settled by homesteaders, Elinor Florence takes her readers through history from 19
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Wildwood by Elinor Florence is now in my top 10 all time favorite novels.  I loved everything about this book. The writing style is smooth and flows so well. I enjoyed the diary sections as much as the current time sections. The comparisons worked well. The characters were fully devoloped and grew emotionally and physically during the time spent in Juniper at Wildwood.  I enjoyed the knowledge gained about the pioneers and the indigenous people, the landscape, the surrounding nature of the land, ...more
Apr 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Since I read more thrillers these days, Wildwood was a little detour from my “who-dunnit” page-turners. I picked this one up because I liked the premise of the novel; living off the grid is something that appeals to me very much (for like a weekend maybe). Wildwood was a much needed escape into the quiet, haunting Canadian north – a year long journey into the harsh northern landscape and one single mother’s determination to survive.

Molly’s resourcefulness and determination are what hooked me, it
Oct 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.9 What a pleasurable book to read! The story was a personal journey into Northern Alberta, Canada and life for Molly and her daughter living in a remote old dwelling . In order to get her Great-Aunt’s inheritance, Molly must live in this remote old house and land for 1 year. The house has no electricity or indoor plumbing. Molly is from Arizona and the weather and modern conveniences are a real culture shock here in Canada. Molly and her 4 yr old daughter have issues from the past to deal with ...more
Hannelore Cheney
Jan 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you Netgalley and Dundurn Press for the eARC.
What a wonderful book this is! It evoked many emotions; tears, panic (the extreme, deadly cold and the bear had my heart racing) empathy and genuine caring for the characters.
Having lived there for 20 years, I have a special place in my heart for Canada and I relived the experience of moving from Manhattan to a ramshackle farmhouse in Upstate NY while reading Molly and Bridget's accomplishments and failures.
Molly, in dire straights and unable to
Sep 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful story about a single mother from Arizona living in a remote, abandoned homestead in Northern Canada with her developmentally-challenged young daughter. Realistic portrayal of life in the harsh wilderness and engaging cast of characters. Simplistic but lovely writing. I really enjoyed this book.
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars since I really loved this novel. Highly recommended story -
Sandy Wettle
Mar 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a book about a woman who ends up "pioneering" in Northern Canada because she has lost her job and has no other way to survive with her daughter. Molly orphaned at age 13, is to inherit her great aunt's farm if she can live there for 1 year. there is no electricity or indoor plumbing. Molly finds out how strong she really is. I love books that have strong female protagonists.
Elaine Thomas
Dec 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Courage, Perseverance, Endurance: This is Wildwood
A single mother. An abandoned farmhouse. An epic battle with the northern wildness.

When a surprising inheritance with strings attached comes her way, Molly Bannister grudgingly accepts a challenge that only a few weeks before she would have laughingly dismissed as ridiculous. She has been laid off from her accounting job in Phoenix, Arizona, and is quickly running out of savings with sees no promising employment opportunities on the horizon. She
Feb 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
So for one thing, I'm from Saskatchewan - only a province over from Alberta and near the setting of the fictional abandoned farmhouse(Wildwood) by the fictional town of Juniper, Alberta that is meant to represent early colonies such as Peace River, Manning and Beaver Lodge in northern Alberta. I don't personally live in the middle of nowhere like the farmhouse is intended to be but if you're from the prairies chances are you've been on a farm in the middle of nowhere at some point in your life. ...more
Feb 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lovely story about young single mother who moves to an isolated house in order to claim her inheritance. She plans to spend a year there to meet the terms of her aunts will even though her daughter is quite young and the House has no modern conveniences. The author does a lovely job of describing the beauty of the countryside and even had me thinking for a moment or two that I myself might enjoy living this way.
Shannon (Mrsreadsbooks)
Full review to come.
Nov 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A contemporary pioneer story/"Roughing it in the Bush" about a single mom who must spend a year in a remote Alberta farm to receive her great-aunt's inheritance. A fun, easy read, great for a chilly weekend in, and I love the relationships between the central girl/women characters (Molly, her 4 y/o daughter Bridget, their friend 12 y/o Wynona, and the fun lawyer's assistant Lottie).

Intriguing side pieces about untrustworthy authority figures (like the child psychologist -- WTF on a green circle
Oct 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
In order to inherit a house and land in the wilds of Alberta, Canada, Molly must live on the homestead for 1 year. Broke and in need of money for medical treatment for her daughter she agrees. This book follows her year of living, learning and surviving with no electric, plumbing and little money. A wonderful book that I couldn't stop reading. Finding her aunt's diary the book runs parallel lines from 1920's and present day. Sweet and wholesome.
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My first historical novel Bird's Eye View is about a young woman who joins the air force in World War Two and becomes an aerial photographic interpreter. Published by Dundurn Press in Toronto, the novel became a Canadian bestseller in 2016.
My new novel Wildwood is about a single mother from the big city who must fulfill the conditions of her inheritance by living for one year in an abandoned, off-
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