Saturday, February 11, 2017

Bride of Romancing the Klondike by Joan Donaldson-Yarmey

For more about Joan Donaldson-Yarmey's novels and to purchase visit her Books We Love author page

To celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday Books We Love Ltd is publishing twelve historical novels, one for each of the ten provinces, one for the Yukon Territory, and one combining the Northwest Territories and Nunavut. We Canadian authors were asked to pick one of the provinces or territories to write about or to do the research on for a non-Canadian author. I chose the Yukon because I have been there twice and love the beauty and history of the territory. The following is a short description of the bride of my novel.

Bride of Romancing the Klondike

It is 1896 and nineteen-year-old Pearl Owens is a modern young woman. She has given up the long, full skirts that were heavy and cumbersome, the corsets and petticoats that further limited her movement and the high-collared the dresses that forced her to hold her head high or even tilted back. She wears bloomers, styled after Turkish trousers, and ankle-length skirts.

     Pearl's idols are Anna Leonowens and Annie “Londonderry” Choen Kopchovsky. In the 1860s, Anna Leonowens taught the wives, concubines, and children of the King of Siam, while during the years 1894-1895, Annie “Londonderry” Choen Kopchovsky became the first woman to travel around the world on a bicycle. She was testing a woman’s ability to look after herself.

     Pearl wants adventure just like her idols so she and her cousin, Emma, are on their way up the Yukon River to Fortymile. Pearl is on a trip to the north where she will be writing articles about the area for her hometown newspaper. The two women meet up with Sam Owens, Emma’s brother, and his two friends, Donald and Gordon, in Fortymile. The men, who have been searching for gold in the north for five years, have just returned from staking a claim on Rabbit Creek.

     Sam and his friends leave their cabin in Fortymile and move to their claims on what is now known as Bonanza Creek. Against Sam’s instructions Pearl and Emma follow them, setting up a tent on a bench at the mouth of the Klondike River overlooking the Yukon River.

     Pearl meets Joseph Ladue, the first man to ever set her heart aflutter, while Emma’s teenage feelings for Donald are rekindled. Pearl spends her time speaking with the men and women of the north and sketching the scenery for her articles. She writes about what it is like to be in the middle of a gold strike. She also describes the early development and growth of a town eventually known as Dawson.

     During the ten months they live in the north Pearl and Emma make friends, celebrate holidays, and suffer through tragedy. One of them finds love, one does not. Of the three men two get rich, one does not.



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