Sarah, getting tired of just eking out an existence on found potatoes for every meal, tries to convince Henry to allow her and the two oldest sons to get jobs in a factory. Henry refuses - at least until he is evicted from his rental and is forced to move into the city life that Henry so despises.
This down-on-their luck family moves to the city, into living conditions that Sarah considers worse than the rental cottage they had to leave. Added to the pressures is the fact that Sarah is pregnant with their sixth child.
Henry is a man who is desperate, and desperate people either make their situations better or succumb to the pressures. Henry is forced to play life's last card that is dealt to him - but will that card get him a winning hand this last time?
This book is a perfect example of what is great about Indie Authors that don't let publishing companies telling them "no" stop them. Pearce mentions that several literary agents passed on the book. I think those agents might look back and think "why did I pass up that book" and kick themselves!
Pearce has obviously done his research about the period of time that the book is written in. Not only will you grow to love the characters (or hate them), you will be taken back into a time machine and actually experience the period from many different perspectives.
When I saw the length of this book, I almost hesitated to review it as it would take some time. At the end, I was wishing that it kept going.
The authors command of his characters is amazing. I found myself alternating between hoping Henry Wakefield could just catch a break and wondering how anyone could be such a jerk. This is a redemption story, but redemption sometimes comes with a great price.
One of the customer reviews says "this book needs to be made into a movie." I have to agree. I can't recommend this book enough if you like historical fiction (or even fiction in general). You will be one of the readers that can say "I read Chris Pearce before he was famous."
To those literary agents who passed on this book, I have only this to say - the days of you being a gatekeeper deciding what should and shouldn't be read are soon going to come to an end. To Chris Pearce I have this to say - you might be better off one day that an agent didn't take you up on it - because that cut will go to you when it catches everyone's attention.
- The author creates characters that almost anyone can relate to. I found myself identifying with some of them to the point where I was really feeling sorry for some of them. I can totally relate to the pressures that many husbands feel when everything is riding on your ability to make enough money. The characters will feel like close friends that you could call upon by the time you finish the book.
- The setting and descriptions are awesome! I probably learned more about the Industrial Revolution from this book than I could have from a college course devoted to it. When you can learn something new and be entertained at the same time - well, that's just magical!
- There was not one issue in this book that I found with grammar or misused words - and it isn't a short story we are talking about.
- The one thing that bothers me is Pearce's writing style - it is so smooth and perfectly paced that I am sick with jealousy!
- None what-so-ever. I would have to stretch to come up with anything and it would be so petty that I would be embarrassed to write it on here
- As of now - this isn't a series. How are we going to get more! LOL.
(I was given a free electronic copy of this book in exchange for a review - the review is my honest assessment of this work.)