Monday, August 5, 2013

In Golden Splendor by Michael K. Reynolds ~ review

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: B&H Books; Reprint edition (July 15, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1433678209
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433678202

"In Golden Splendor" is also available as an e-book.

July 15, 2013 An Heirs of Ireland Novel

Irish immigrant Seamus Hanley is a lost soul, haunted by his past as a U.S. Army deserter and living alone in the wilderness of the Rocky Mountains in 1849. But after witnessing a deadly stage coach crash, he finds purpose in the scattered wreckage -- a letter with a picture of a beautiful and captivating woman named Ashlyn living in San Francisco at the height of the Gold Rush.
Moved by her written plea for help, he abandons all and sets out on an epic journey across the wild and picturesque American frontier. While being pursued by those who want to hang him, Seamus encounters fascinating characters including a young Pauite Indian who makes the ultimate sacrifice in helping Seamus to cross the snowy Yosemite Valley.
Battered but changed for the better, Seamus reaches San Francisco on Christmas Eve as the city burns in the tragic fire of 1849. But there is little time for rest, as an even greater, more harrowing adventure involving Ashlyn is about to begin.

My take on this book:

I was drawn to "In Golden Splendor" because I am always interested in a good historical read, and I got just what I hoped for with this novel. This story draws the reader back to the mid 1800's during the California Gold Rush. 

Seamus Handley's past was rife with disappointment, and haunted by a past that he just can't seem to overcome. How though did this Irishman wind up living in self exile in the Rocky Mountain Wilderness, where it seems that the lack of food might do him in. It seems though fate has something else in store for Seamus though when he finds a letter from a woman in San Francisco asking for help he has nothing to lose by heading to California. The journey he embarks on will test his mettle. Will Seamus find what he is looking for in California?

Mr. Reynolds weaves together an epic historical tale that comes to life in the pages of this story. I found it easy to envision the journey that Seamus embarked on. Since I didn't read the first book in the story I was really interested in who Seamus was and what his background might have been. The author does a great job of providing enough information to make this a stand alone story. I became totally invested in Seamus' story wanting to know how it would end. Rich details, really brought the story to life for me, and wanting to know how things would work out for Seamus kept me reading. There were so many secondary characters that we meet on the journey that play unique roles in the story that kept it moving along. Overall, a rich historical read, blended with romance, suspense, and an inspirational message that reminds the reader of God's love. I enjoyed this book so much that I plan on going back to read the first book in the series!

A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review.

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