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Mrs. Mike (Mrs. Mike, #1)
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Group Reads > Mrs. Mike June 2018 - Spoilerville

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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 1231 comments Mod
For general post-read discussion of Mrs. Mike. No spoiler tags needed in this thread, but if you’re discussing a spoiler in your comment, please uncheck “Add to my Update Feed” as a courtesy to your GR friends.


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 1231 comments Mod
I found this excellent article, which you should read after you finish the book. It talks about some of differences between Kathy's real life and the fictionalized story told by the Freedmans: http://www.oprah.com/omagazine/Mrs-Mi...


Elinor | 209 comments @Tadiana I read the article, and it is a wonderful example of how books can inspire young people. I, too, read that book when I was a young woman and admired Kathy's courage.


Barb in Maryland | 502 comments Great article. Thanks for the link. I can easily see how this book could inspire any number of young readers.


message 5: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 1964 comments It kind of cracked me up that to the author of the article, pleurisy was a wasting disease no ever heard of anymore, since I had it while pregnant! It really is incredibly painful, by the way. But curable, as Kathy found out. I loved that parallel between Kathy's and Nancy's lives, reminding us that life is uncertain at best and needs to be lived as fully as we can.


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 1231 comments Mod
I just finished the book last night. It was great to read it again, like visiting an old friend that you haven't seen in years. I'd forgotten many of the details, but not this:

Oh be joyful, Mamanowatum.


message 7: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 1964 comments My copy has the 2002 sequel, "The Search for Joyful", which I presume has to involve Mamanowatum's descendants? I'm debating reading it now or waiting for Mrs. Mike to digest so I don't contrast it too harshly with it.


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 1231 comments Mod
I’ve heard the sequels aren’t nearly as good, so set your expectations to low.


message 9: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 1964 comments Well, it's there, so I'll have to read it, but I think I'll read something in between!


message 10: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 1964 comments So, Mrs. Mike. I find it hard to believe that having been born within about 75 miles of the Canadian border and living most of my life in the Northwest, that I haven't read this before. I mean, I went through entire libraries as a kid, but I'm 99.9% sure that this one never crossed my sticky palms. Which is a shame because I'm sure it would have become a bosom friend. It's amazing the amount of action that's packed into the book, but it never loses its theme, that as Kathy says, "It hurts a little...Happiness."


Barb in Maryland | 502 comments Finished this yesterday and I'm still mulling over my review. My 13 year old self would have adored it! Like Karlyne above, I don't understand how I missed it, as I was gobbling up Jack London along with a few James Oliver Curwood books at about that age.


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 1231 comments Mod
Considering this was written in 1947, about 70 years ago, I'm fairly impressed with the book's sensitivity to the native tribes and people in Canada. It's definitely not PC, but there's also quite a bit of respect for the Indians and their way of life.

Some GR reviewers have dinged this book for taking so much freedom with the original true story of Kathy O'Fallon Flannigan, but given that it's classified as a novel, their fictionalization of the story doesn't really perturb me.


message 13: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 1964 comments In the article you cited above, Tadiana, the author was shocked that it was fiction, which is a testimony, I think, to the truth of the book, its spirit. I wonder if that's what bugged so many people: that they wanted it to be all "true"?

By the way, for someone who had read the book so many times, I was surprised at some of the author's (of the article) mistakes - British Columbia instead of Alberta and Kathy being barely 19 when the book concludes (at least 17 years have actually gone by, so she's 33 or 34), Constance and her daughter having died in the same epidemic (Madeleine died in childbirth). Do you suppose that she just remembered it from her first reading and never noticed the discrepancies between her memories and the actual story?


Elinor | 209 comments I believe the Freedmans tried to write another novel, but without the rich resource of Mrs. Mike's memories, it fell flat. Her stories were so authentic and unique that they could not have been made up.


message 15: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 1964 comments Elinor wrote: "I believe the Freedmans tried to write another novel, but without the rich resource of Mrs. Mike's memories, it fell flat. Her stories were so authentic and unique that they could not have been mad..."

I have the sequel; it's a 2-in-1 special edition published in 2002. I haven't read it yet, since I've heard it lacks the richness of Mrs. Mike. But I will read it before it goes back to the library, because, of course, I have to.


message 16: by Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽, Moderator (last edited Jun 11, 2018 05:06PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 1231 comments Mod
Karlyne, I wasn't tracking the timeline too closely, and I'm not surprised if there are continuity errors in it, but I did get the distinct impression that the total years from beginning to end was about 11-12 years. I'm curious, how did you get to 17?

Chapter 1: It's 1907, and Kathy is 16 years old.
Chapter 26 says that she's 20 years old during her Boston visit.
Chapter 27 says that it's 1914 at the beginning of that chapter, so we've jumped forward 3 years (now 7 years since the story began). A few more years quickly pass in this chapter (there's a reference to 1918). We also see Jonathan again after 8 years. Hmm. It could be 1919 or 20 when the novel ends? I don't think any later.

In any case Kathy is DEFINITELY not 19 when the novel ends. :)


message 17: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 1964 comments Because being a mathematical genius with poor eyesight, I started at 1901...


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 1231 comments Mod
Karlyne wrote: "Because being a mathematical genius with poor eyesight, I started at 1901..."

LOL!


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