This is a well written book with a great story. Actually it almost has three story lines. The first story is of course about Tamsen Littlejohn. She is a young woman living with her mother and stepfather. Her stepfather is trying to get her to marry someone she does not want to marry. At a certain point Tamsen tries to run away and she meets Jesse Bird.and he helps her to get away from her stepfather . They travel together and pretend to be married until they can really get married or get somewhere where Tamsen can be safe. There is also the underlying story of the state of North Carolina and the state of Franklin fighting each other. I really liked the way all of these story lines worked together. I had a hard time putting it down.
This was a really good book. I got an advance copy. I honestly couldn't put it down. I felt as if I was right along with the characters. seeing what they saw, feeling what they felt. Lori Benton did an excellent job with the details. I was immediately drawn to the character Tamsen. It was such an enjoyable read. But also an emotional one as well. Not in a bad way though. I don't find myself wanting to read many books more than once. Honestly I rarely do. But this book was so good, I find myself wanting to read it again. Once you get to the end you will know why. I don't want to give details about the book itself. You can read the synopsis for that. This book is a definite read for those who enjoy historical fiction.
I LOVED this book! I could hardly put it down and when I was forced to I spent the entire time either thinking about the story or imagining what might happen next.
I am a fan of historical fiction and have been for as long as I can remember, Laura Ingalls Wilder managed to hook me when I was about 5, and I also love history. Too often historical fiction differs so far from what the history books teach that I get a little frustrated. That did NOT happen with The Pursuit Of Tamsen Littlejohn at all, the story is well-written and catches the reader's attention without sacrificing any of the historical details. Lori Benton has done an amazing job weaving history and story in such a way that the reader does not see where one ends and the other begins. It is readily apparent that the author put in a lot of research and that she is a very talented writer.
I really can't say enough about this book. I loved the characters, the story, the history, and definitely the writing style.
Tamsen and Jesse are well developed, as are the secondary characters. I cared about them, what happened to them, and my emotions ran the gamut alongside theirs.
When I finished the book it was hard to say goodbye to them and I found myself wishing this would be a series and I would "see" them again. I will just have to console myself with reading Lori Benton's previous book, Burning Sky, and if it's anything like The Pursuit Of Tamsen Littlejohn I know I will enjoy it.
Lori Benton definitely has a new fan in me and I will be anxiously awaiting each future release.
(I received an ARC influencer copy of this book from the author in exchange for my review. All opinions are entirely my own)
Simply put, I adored this story! Having not read Lori Benton's first book, I had no idea what to expect - would the plot be unrealistic, the romance cheesy, the historical details overlooked? No, no and no! We meet Tamsen at a moment that she feels trapped by her future, in a bleak moment when her step-father holds all the control in regards to not only her future, but also the well-being of her mother. When she is forced to escape, a harrowing journey ensues, a journey that brings the help of Jesse Bird, an Overmountain man.
The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn had everything that I look for in romantic historical fiction - the setting and time-period were described so well, the dialogue was genuine and rang true to the characters and setting and the romance was near perfect. It's not often that I compare a male lead to one of the caliber of a Laura Frantz novel, but Jesse Bird is definitely in that ranking. Thus far, he is my favorite of the year.
I loved Tamsen and Jesse, and especially had a soft spot for Cade, the man that adopted Jesse after his family was killed in during a raid on their farm. There were many layers to the story that added to its depth. Constant was the fear of being caught by Tamsen's stepfather and her almost-betrothed, but the mystery of Jesse Bird's heritage and at times, Tamsen's, provided a puzzle that begged for solving.
I couldn't put this book down. It touches on a time period that is often overlooked in historical fiction - a time when America was a wilder, perhaps more majestic place - and to be crafted so well in word and character just solidified my love of the story.
I'm so happy that I already own Burning Sky - you can bet that it is at the top of my summer reading pile!
Lori Benton's "The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn" is a vividly portrayed historical saga. Colonial America is the backdrop for an epic love story of adventure and gentle romance. Benton's sketches of the East Coast's untamed wilderness and rustic towns fill with color and detail as the story builds, and her descriptions reveal scenes that bring the characters and setting to life. The novel begins with high emotion and ever-present danger. Tamsen Littlejohn's plight is gripping from the beginning as she breaks free of her stepfather's unyielding grasp. What occurs thereafter is a story of escape and pursuit as Tamsen and her rescuer, Jesse, attempt to outrun their trackers. Their journey reveals scenes of early America, from Indian villages to the conflict between the State of Franklin and North Carolina.
"The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn" is an undeniably rich novel, and I completely enjoyed the first and last quarters of the novel. The middle lagged in spots for me, though there were moments of action and tension interspersed throughout the entire plot. I was surprised by some of the revelations uncovered in the conclusion. Some unlikely turns of events left me fully satisfied; especially when details from the novel's beginning play unexpected roles in the outcome.
Benton gives readers a meaningful love story of restraint and sacrifice. Despite Jesse's almost immediate attraction to Tamsen, their feelings are not entirely mutual. Their relationship grows slowly and with restraint as Tamsen's feelings unfold from survival dependence to encompassing love. I am always glad when romance develops at an unrushed pace that allows characters to develop deeper emotional attraction. I also appreciated Benton's portrayal of the father-son relationship between Jesse and his adoptive father, Cade. The story of love and sacrifice that unfolds is just as beautiful as the romantic love that blossoms between Tamsen and Jesse.
"The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn" is a historical romance that will draw readers in with its resplendent detail and beautiful writing. Click Here to Read Chapter 1.
I received a complimentary e-copy of this book from Waterbrook Multnomah. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above 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.