Sunday 19 January 2014

Book Review of The Bachelor Farmers by Brenda Sorrels


Set in northern Minnesota in the winter of 1919, THE BACHELOR FARMERS tells a story of two Norwegian brothers who learn the meaning of love from a most unlikely source.

Hans and Jon, t
he youngest of four immigrant brothers, have just inherited land from their recently deceased father and set out to develop it, thus perpetuating the family dream of success in America. When Jon learns that the husband of Mahal, a beautiful half-breed, Ojibwa woman, has been injured on their property and cannot work, he hires her to be their personal cook.

Under the eye of his disapproving brother, Jon finds himself falling in love, but when a terrible blizzard blows into town without warning, the three of them must deal with the consequences and make decisions that will ultimately reshape their lives in profound and unimaginable ways.

THE BACHELOR FARMERS takes us into a world where true meaning and healing are found in the complexity of human relationships and in the choices that are made in the face of adversity.


The Bachelor FarmersThe Bachelor Farmers by Brenda Sorrels
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

This is a fantastic and compelling story of love and loss set in 1919. I really enjoyed it!

Jon Gustafson is the youngest son of four brothers. He is a wonderful character. He is kind, thoughtful and hardworking. I liked him very much.

Hans Gustafson is the next to youngest son. He too is a wonderful character. He has a very good head on his shoulders. Like his brother, he too is hardworking, but he is more taciturn and reserved. I liked him a lot too.

I do not usually read a lot of historical fiction, but the blurb intrigued me so I decided to give the book a try. This is not necessarily a fast paced tale, but it is most definitely a page turner! There are four Gustafson brothers, who are immigrants from Norway and now living in Duluth, but this story only follows the two youngest, Hans and Jon. They are both intriguing characters in their own way. Jon is a sensitive soul, so when he hears of Mahal's story, he impulsively employs her as their cook. Mahal's story is not a happy one, but she has a strength of character that filled me with awe! The story is told from Jon's, Hans's and Mahal's points of view, which allows the reader to get to know the thoughts and feelings of each of them. The author has brought the past to life with her detailed descriptions of people and places, and made me feel like I had traveled back in time. However, it is the last half of the story that really touched me. My heart broke for all the characters, and I ended up in tears. Therefore, be prepared with some tissues! This story is not a love story nor even a romance, but the story of betrayal, love, loss and forgiveness.

Brenda Sorrel has written a fantastic historical novel that is extremely touching and deeply moving. I love her writing style that, although not as fast paced as the other books I am used to reading, flowed beautifully. I would definitely read more of this author's work in the future.

Although there are scenes of an intimate nature, they are not explicit. I highly recommend this book if you love historical fiction. - Lynn Worton

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