I liked this book. I wouldn’t say that I loved it, but it fills a certain niche. I downloaded the audiobook from the public library and listened to it off and on whenever I had to drive more than 30 minutes. It took a while to get through the whole thing and I had to re-download it many many times. The library probably thinks I’m obsessed with it.
I just checked and apparently it’s only 12 hours long. For reference, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is over 20 hours.
I think I’m giving the impression that it was painful to get through, but it really was a well-crafted book with lots of detail, characters… and story lines. I think I was disappointed because I was expecting a run-of-the-mill historical romance novel and what I got was an inside look at a dozen Norwegian turn-of-the-century immigrants. It was interesting and easy to create this piece of history in your mind, but it wasn’t exactly action-packed.
Another thing that came as a surprise to me was all the praying. I mean, this is probably historically accurate (if I crossed the Atlantic under those conditions, I’d pray too!) but I’ve never seen any other authors put the actual words in. It gave it sort of a Hallmark Special kind of feel.
What really bugged me was how the book just suddenly stops! There isn’t a clear end to any of the 4 completely separate story lines. In fact, 2 of them could be considered cliff-hangers! I got to the end and double-checked that I hadn’t missed some chapters. It was then I realized that this was the first book in a series. Ugh. I don’t think I’ll be picking up the next one anytime soon. Although, the OC Public Library has a somewhat limited selection of downloadable audiobooks… so I guess there’s a chance (that is, if they even have it!)