America's first historical novelist, James Fenimore Cooper, reportedly drew upon Colonel Joseph Frye's journals to describe the 18th century Battle of Fort William Henry in his Last of the Mohicans. Now 21st-century historical novelist June O'Donal uses her extensive research of Fryeburg, the town Colonel Frye founded, to write her Fryeburg Chronicles. Carrying on the great tradition, she weaves historical figures and her own composite characters so well that readers will easily suspend disbelief and feel themselves living in 18th and 19th century Fryeburg as they consume Book I, Book II, and Book III. Then they'll be glad to know still more are in the pipeline. Hundreds of northern New England towns began just as Fryeburg did at the close of the French and Indian War in 1763, two hundred fifty years ago. Now retired after teaching history in Fryeburg for thirty years, I wish O'Donal's books had been available while I was still in the classroom. They're documented with lists of historical people, places, and events as well as footnotes, a bibliography, and the family tree of her fictional Miller family. The author loves American history and her enthusiasm infects the reader, especially anyone familiar with the Fryeburg locale. Thomas McLaughlin Retired history teacher Local newspaper columnist "For everything there is a season, and a time for everything under heaven." This is what the Miller family learns as they face deaths, births, laughter, mourning and new ventures in this family-friendly, historical novel.
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