Cori's Reviews > Daughter of Fortune

Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende
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's review
Aug 31, 2011

really liked it

My SIL has been encouraging me to read Allende for years — she’s one of her favorite authors. I can see why! Allende’s grasp of historical events, her ability to bring those events to life, and the depth in her descriptive writing combine to create a very beautiful novel. While the plot was perhaps so-so, I thought her characters were fascinating, and I didn’t feel like I’d read them before (which is always nice). She also killed setting. It was like I was there.

And I kind of was. Growing up in gold country (gold was discovered just up the hill from me) meant that I already had a lot of background for a novel set during the Gold Rush (students in the Sacramento area go gold panning in school…or at least we did…not sure what kids do these days during budget cuts). I loved that so much of this book took place under my feet, and as I drove through Sacramento, I found myself wondering what it looked like 150 years ago, when it was full of prospectors and prostitutes. My city of a million people started out a very different place.

As much as I enjoyed it, Daughter of Fortune wasn’t perfect. It had one of the most abrupt endings that I can ever remember in a book — I thought the CD skipped or I missed something. I was brushing loose ends out of my way for the rest of the day. Not that I need everything wrap up neatly into a nice little package, but I thought there was far too much left undone. Or maybe there is a sequel I’m unaware of? I also wished the main character spent more time finding herself than her love.

Read my full review here:

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