Sunday, March 23, 2014

Savage Girl by Jean Zimmerman Book Review

I love historical fiction.  I always have and always will.  What I most adore is being dropped into a time and place and living through believable eyes.  The ultimate imaginative experience, in my opinion, when done well.

Jean Zimmerman does her time travel well in Savage Girl.  She does add a modern twist in that her main female character, the savage girl later named Bronwyn, is a 21st century heroine.  The novel is more accessible with a modern character in a past time but some won't be comfortable with the contrast.

The story is narrated through the eyes of a medical student and perhaps murderer.  Our narrator is the son of a wealthy family who adopts Bronwyn on a trip out to Virginia City.  Was she raised by wolves?  By indians?  We have no idea at the beginning of the book.  Swept up by this rich but eccentric family, Bronwyn is deposited smack in the middle of New York high society in the late 19th century.

Such a decision was made by both kings and the rich many times over and the resulting true stories very often resulted in tragedy.  Why do some "civilized" people feel such an urge to tame "savages"?  Bronwyn, as could be expected, has a mind of her own.  And men are being murdered seemingly after she smiles at them.

Is Bronwyn the murderer or is her adopted brother taking the fall for her?  That twist I won't give away.

I really loved the historical detail and interesting characters.  Parts of the story are forced but they do support the story line (so suspend disbelief).  A lovely book and I enjoyed walking through the twists of this mystery as executed by a skilled author.

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