Monday, October 10, 2011
The Measure of Katie Calloway
Title: THE MEASURE OF KATIE CALLOWAY
Author: Serena Miller
The Civil War has ended—but Harlan Calloway has returned to his southern mansion to find it leveled, his slaves gone, and his wife living in a hut. Katie has suffered enough at her husband’s hands, and he seems to blame her for the war—at least for allowing Sherman to burn his home—and now he’s trying to kill Katie.
Desperate to live, Katie and her young brother flee to the last place Harlan would look. Michigan. She lands a job as a cook for a logging company, changes her name, and prepares to live in the deep woods. Katie isn’t afraid of hard work, but she’s not about to let a man bully her, so when the old camp cook develops a dislike to her and tries to get her fired, she fights back.
But it’s far from over. Katie is falling for the camp owner, a kind man, but she’s not free to marry, still being wed to Harlan. And Harlan is still blaming Katie for his losses…and he’s determined to find her and kill her so he can marry a rich widow woman in Georgia and use her money to rebuild his plantation. Is Katie so well hidden that Harlan won’t find her? Or could she have reached the end of the line?
Okay, I’ll admit when I picked up the next book in my review pile, THE MEASURE OF KATIE CALLOWAY, my first thoughts were ‘it’s just another historical.’ But then I noticed the pile of timber at the bottom and it piqued my interest. And I read that the book is set in Michigan (my home state!). I remember seeing the museum that Serena mentioned in her story, the one that started her story wheels turning. So that was an instant bond.
I absolutely loved this story! It is so fresh and well-written that I had to keep reading. I enjoyed all the historical accounts of the logging industry (and I researched all that myself to teach Michigan history to my children when we still lived there). The characters were so well developed that I felt that even the crusty old cook and the crew of loggers were my friends. They all had distinctive personalities.
I highly recommend THE MEASURE OF KATIE CALLOWAY. If I could give more than five stars, I would. This is a really great book. $14.99. 316 pages.