Monday, October 01, 2018

Everything She Didn't Say

Everything She Didn't Say

I have always enjoyed Jane Kirkpatrick's books. They are 'true' historical novels, often based on real people who left amazing legacies. She does intense research to find as many events as possible in their lives and then fills in the blanks with imaginative yet realistic thoughts, words, and actions. In Everything She Didn't Say, Kirkpatrick transports the reader right back into the dusty or mud-filled streets of the early west. There is no glorifying the difficult lives our early pioneers had, and no 'everything will turn out ok' romance that isn't consistent with their lives.

I really appreciated the difficulties Carrie Strahorn went through and I enjoyed learning a lot of new things about those early days of the railroad. Carrie was the first woman (non-native) to visit Yellowstone Park, and perhaps the first woman to ride a real 'rollercoaster' (you'll have to read the book to learn more about that). 

Jane Kirkpatrick really brought life to a somewhat dry and limited report of the days when railroads were trying to establish effective routes. She brought heart to the struggles of the west and made me really appreciate our current amenities! It is hard to imagine a love strong enough to overcome hard stagecoach seats, years of not having a place to call home, and the rough and tumble environment of mining camps!


In 1911, Carrie Strahorn wrote a memoir entitled Fifteen Thousand Miles by Stage, which shared some of the most exciting events of 25 years of traveling and shaping the American West with her husband, Robert Strahorn, a railroad promoter, investor, and writer. That is all fact. Everything She Didn't Say imagines Carrie nearly ten years later as she decides to write down what was really on her mind during those adventurous nomadic years.
Certain that her husband will not read it, and in fact that it will only be found after her death, Carrie is finally willing to explore the lessons she learned along the way, including the danger a woman faces of losing herself within a relationship with a strong-willed man and the courage it takes to accept her own God-given worth apart from him. Carrie discovers that wealth doesn't insulate a soul from pain and disappointment, family is essential, pioneering is a challenge, and western landscapes are both demanding and nourishing. Most of all, she discovers that home can be found, even in a rootless life.
With a deft hand, New York Times bestselling author Jane Kirkpatrick draws out the emotions of living--the laughter and pain, the love and loss--to give readers a window not only into the past, but into their own conflicted hearts. Based on a true story.
Jane is internationally recognized for her lively presentations and well-researched stories that encourage and inspire.

A New York Times Bestselling author, her works have appeared in more than 50 national publications including The Oregonian, Private Pilot and Daily Guideposts. With more than 1.5 million books in print, her 30 novels and non-fiction titles draw readers from all ages and genders. Most are historical novels based on the lives of actual historical women often about ordinary women who lived extraordinary lives. Her works have won numerous national awards including the WILLA Literary Award, the Carol Award,, Will Roger's Medallion Award and in 1996, her first novel, A Sweetness to the Soul, won the prestigious Wrangler Award from the Western Heritage and National Cowboy Museum. Her novels have also been finalists for the Spur Award, the Oregon Book Award, the Christy, Reader's Choice and the WILLA in both fiction and non-fiction. Several titles have been Literary Guild and Book of the Month choices and been on the bestsellers list for independent bookstores across the country, in the Pacific Northwest and the Christian Booksellers Association. Her books have been translated into German, Dutch, Finnish and Chinese.