“Many Sparrows” by Lori Benton

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In 1774, the Ohio-Kentucky frontier pulses with rising tension and brutal conflicts as Colonists push westward and encroach upon Native American territories. The young Inglesby family is making the perilous journey west when an accident sends Philip back to Redstone Fort for help, forcing him to leave his pregnant wife Clare and their four-year old son Jacob on a remote mountain trail.

When Philip does not return and Jacob disappears from the wagon under the cover of darkness, Clare awakens the next morning to find herself utterly alone, in labor and wondering how she can to recover her son…especially when her second child is moments away from being born.

Clare will face the greatest fight of her life, as she struggles to reclaim her son from the Shawnee Indians now holding him captive. But with the battle lines sharply drawn, Jacob’s life might not be the only one at stake. When frontiersman Jeremiah Ring comes to her aid, can the stranger convince Clare that recovering her son will require the very thing her anguished heart is unwilling to do: be still, wait and let God fight this battle for them?

Lori Benton
 
Lori Benton had me hooked from the very first page of Many Sparrows!  The suspense and action in this story is bar none, and it’s incredibly dramatic, too.  Normally, it would be the very kind of book that I can’t put down, except …
 
Lori Benton wrote this story in an incredibly realistic way.  I typically sail through stories, my nose firmly engrossed at the edge of the page, while I fly through it to find out what happens next.  I couldn’t do that with this story, however; it was too realistic.  Benton brings Clare’s feelings and problems and pain to aching reality, and I found that I needed a break periodically to separate myself from it.  Not that I wanted to stop reading, because I couldn’t wait to find out what would happen next, but because I could feel Clare’s pain all-too strongly.  The breaks helped provide some needed distance and helped me to absorb the story fully.
 
The intense drama doesn’t detract from the story, however, as evidenced from the way I bounced on my seat through the beginning of the story – for an unusual reason, I suppose.  The Chief Logan of the story settled at one point in my home county back in Pennsylvania – and many local things are named for him.  I’d not heard his whole story before, however, and encountering it in this book was fascinating.  Being face-to-face with Mingoes and Logans, the original ones, was quite fascinating, and I found myself wishing I could mail the book off to my great-grandmother for another one of our by-mail book clubs.  She would’ve loved meeting local history in the pages of such a famous book, and I would have loved sharing it with her.
 
My local connection aside, Benton knew her setting and brought that to life, too.  Between land descriptions, drama, and Jem’s story slowly coming to light, there were many things to keep the pages turning, and one didn’t always know what might be coming in the next chapter.  Despite what you might want to happen, Benton kept surprising me.  I love when authors can do that.
 
Benton definitely created a new fan with Many Sparrows.  I can’t wait to read more!
 
I received a free book from LitFuse Publicity.  All opinions are my own.

What are your thoughts?

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