I read the three-book series over the weekend and found it very lack-luster. The story was well-penned and presented solid historical research; but continually missed the mark. At every crisis where a real story could be told; it wasn't. Brady, Mara, Asa, JT, Malinda, Eli, Elizabeth, Gertie, even Tumbleweed Tillie, all gave the potential of a real story to grab the reader - but none delivered.
After all those months on the Oregon Trail Elizabeth has finally reached her new home. The end of book two finds Eli has returned and asks Elizabeth to marry him. Elizabeth starts to plan her wedding as well as help her family and friends settle into their new way of life.
What I liked: This book was a good wrap up for the series. It was interesting to see how people would adjust and settle into a new home. There was also okay plot about a Indian lady being accepted by the whites. It was nice to see a happy ending for all the characters after the long trip out west.
What I did not like: The one complaint I had with the first two books remains with this one as well. I would have loved to have Eli be a first person voice in this book not just Elizabeth. It would have made this a much better book over all. As much as I liked this story it just is missing a little more depth and adding another first person character telling their story would have helped a lot.
Overall I liked this book and it was well written and closed out the series well.
Melody Carlson in her new book, "A Home At Trail's End" Book Three in the Homeward on the Oregon Trail series published by Harvest House Publishers concludes the journey of Elizabeth Martin.
From the back cover: The end of a journey-the beginning of a new life
After overcoming the challenges of the Oregon Trail, Eli Kincaid, the handsome scout for the wagon train, has realized that his love for Elizabeth Martin is stronger that his affinity for life on the trail. While Elizabeth and her children stay with Malinda, also a widow with children, Eli builds a cabin and Elizabeth plans their wedding.
But how will the area's residents feel when they find out that Elizabeth is also secretly sheltering a lone Indian woman and her young child on her property? Or that her hired hand-a freed slave-is building his own cabin, despite laws against blacks becoming permanent residents? And when Malinda's fiance decides frontier life is not right for him, Elizabeth must help pick up the pieces of her dear friend's heart.
Can Elizabeth and Eli carve out a new life and share God's love in spite of the turmoil? The heartwarming conclusion to the Homeward on the Oregon Trail series depicts the transforming power of love and faith on the rugged Oregon coast.
This is it, we have made it to the end of the journey and now begins the process of settling down in a new community. Eli finally comes to his senses and proposes, then sets out to build their new home. Elizabeth has never been on this journey for herself and now that she is settling down she continues her tradition. She shelters an Indian woman and her child on her property and helps her freed slave build his own cabin even though that is against the law. The people don't like the preacher and want Elizabeth's father to hold church for them and Malinda has problems of her own. It wouldn't be a Melody Carlson book without the romance though and Elizabeth has her hands full planning for her wedding. "A home At Trail's End" is great fun to read. Ms. Carlson has a great way of telling the story and moving it along at a nice pace. Her characters are wonderful and she gives them life and unique voices. All this and in a Western. What more can anyone desire? A really enjoyable read.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Harvest House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."