Regan Walker's Reviews > Ashes in the Wind

Ashes in the Wind by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss
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it was amazing
bookshelves: 5-star-reads, favorite-keepers

Captivating Civil War Romance!

When Kathleen Woodiwiss did romance well, there was no one better--and such a novel is ASHES IN THE WIND. To my thinking, it's up there with her best (THE FLAME AND THE FLOWER, THE WOLF AND THE DOVE and SHANNA).

It is a compelling tale of a young Southern woman from Louisiana who loses everything in the Civil War. The Yankees take her family and her home and finally, even her identity. Disguised as a boy for her safety, 17-year old Alaina MacGaren thinks to seek refuge in her uncle's home in New Orleans. But before she can reach him she encounters a group of soldiers who harass her. She is saved from them by a young Yankee surgeon, Captain Cole Latimer from Minnesota, a man of honor and great medical talent who is respectful of Southerners.

Cole takes "Al" the boy (Alaina's new identity) under his wing and gives "him" a job at the Yankee army hospital in New Orleans Al returns the favor and saves the doctor's life one night when he is drunk, set upon by thieves and tossed into the Mississippi River. In the process of caring for Cole in her uncle's home, much happens, and a great mix-up occurs that casts a shadow on the rest of the story.

It is a magnificent love story, well told with great plot twists and accurate history of the era, woven in so that you understand what is going on in the Civil War. Her characters are richly drawn. You will feel you are living it and you will celebrate Alaina's strength and intelligence. She plays many parts and Woodiwiss does them all so well. You won't regret reading this one--it's a keeper!

Here's the backlist should you want to read more. It seems from my own experience and others that the earlier books (look at the dates) are the best.

Birmingham Family Saga Series

The Flame and the Flower, 1972 (her first and one of her best)
Short story, "The Kiss
Short story, "Beyond the Kiss"
A Season Beyond a Kiss, 2000
The Elusive Flame, 1998

Single Novels

The Wolf and the Dove, 1974
Shanna, 1977
Ashes in the Wind, 1979
A Rose in Winter, 1981
Come Love a Stranger, 1984
So Worthy My Love, 1989
Forever in Your Embrace, 1992
Petals on the River, 1997
The Reluctant Suitor, 2002
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
February 24, 2012 – Shelved
June 2, 2012 – Shelved as: 5-star-reads
June 2, 2012 – Shelved as: favorite-keepers

Comments Showing 1-2 of 2 (2 new)

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KatLynne Wonderful review, Regan! Woodiwiss was one of my favorite author's and I'm hoping to do a re-read soon of a few favorites. Love this review and thank you for adding the list with dates.


Regan Walker KatLynne wrote: "Wonderful review, Regan! Woodiwiss was one of my favorite author's and I'm hoping to do a re-read soon of a few favorites. Love this review and thank you for adding the list with dates."

She is worth a re-read, especially her early ones. She had such a gift with words. I often stopped and re-read a passage just to ponder on her ability to express a scene so beautifully.


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