Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Spymistress by Jennifer Chiaverini (audio)

"Hope is never false.  One's hope may not be fulfilled, but that doesn't mean it was wrong to hope."

Set in the confederate civil war, this novel tells the story of Elizabeth Van Lew - known in the story of Lizzie.  Educated by Quakers in the north, Lizzie and her family are local to the union.  When the civil war breaks out they secretly work to aid the north by tending to prisoners.  At a great cost to their reputation, they eventually becoming involved in the Richmond Underground and in transferring information to the northern army.

I have been meaning to read something of Jennifer Chiaverini's for awhile.  It seemed interesting and I was excited to read this book, but it didn't live up to my expectations.  I enjoyed some parts, but it took me awhile to read and generally annoyed me.  Lizzie seemed super naive and whinny.  I must have missed her earlier connections to the north as a child, but it just didn't seem to add up that her and her family were so pro-union amongst so many southerners.  I have a feeling that this was true to historical fact, but the author was not able to convince me.  There also didn't seem to be much of a plot line.  I was bored by the climax (if you can even call it that) and I found myself not really caring what happened to the characters by the end of the book.

Chiaverini's books get checked out all the time at the library and a lot of people really seem to enjoy them so I'm not going to give up on her quite yet.  Maybe it was just the wrong book. Or the narrator.  I'd like to read Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker at some point or maybe one of her Elm Creek Quilt novels.

No comments:

Post a Comment