Neko is back in the game and going strong! Today I am bringing you another Review Request this time by D. J. Swykert about growing up, learning to control your life, furry animals, and death. Lots of death. But don’t let that stop you from checking it out! And as always SPOILERS ahead amigos!
Title: Maggie Elizabeth Harrington: I Live in Two Worlds
Author: D. J. Swykert
Amazon.com Synopsis: Maggie Elizabeth Harrington is the story of a young woman in the 1890s, whose world is a remote northern Michigan mining town, where she tries to save a pack of young wolves from a bounty hunter. A terse historical love story of a young woman’s struggle with environmental and moral issues concerning the slaughter of wolves, and the church’s condemnation of her love for a young man, are as real in today’s global world as they were for young Maggie more than a century ago.
My Thoughts: I am so torn! I liked this book, I did. It was a cute coming of age story, sad at times (yup I was bawling when grandma died…), heartwarming at others, but man death was such a prevalent theme! This theme makes sense, considering the area and time frame, death would be a constant companion to everyone. But it is still sad ;_;
I’m glad that Tommy and Maggie are still in love even though their families are against there relationship by the end of the book. I hate reading about how people will love each other forever then boom college comes around and suddenly “we are young and apart and should live our lives”. No! Boo on you! I hate that attitude! Love is forever only when convenient, blargh. But Tommy is a man of his word and Maggie, even at thirteen, understand what her heart is saying. It’s sweet without being over done.
The wolves were also fun. Swykert gave all four pups their own personality, and the characteristics fit! The only boy wolf begins to act like an alpha with his sisters, one sister is dominant to the other two pups but still understands that bro is boss, and the final two are more members of the pack. All four work together within the pack structure but are still ultimately puppies and love to play, cuddle, hunt, and protect their human pack members. Swykert knows wolves and shows it in his writing.
Also kudos on the human characters. Maggie’s grandma and dad are both stern people, you don’t really like them that much to begin with, but slowly throughout the book readers get a better feel for them. We start to understand why her dad is so quiet and religious, working down in a dark, dangerous mine for most of his life has left a lot of room for joy and humanity. And her grandma losing so much of her family, it takes a lot out of a person to keep burying their loves ones, and she does answer Maggie’s questions and take an interest in her life but time has not been kind and Swykert does a stellar job of portraying this. Upper class, middle class, the preacher, head hunter, they are all awesomely done and highly believable. That many fleshed out characters takes work and dedication, something not seen in a lot of authors anymore.
The reason I knocked off one star was for the repetitiveness. As an adult it was annoying, but seeing as this was a young adult book, I’m thinking around middle school, that may just be how authors write for that age. It may have also had something to do with the book being narrated in first person by a thirteen year old girl. I know my thoughts get pretty repetitive… Still I’m glad I got the chance to read it, and am looking forward to the sequel which involves a love triangle between Maggie, Tommy, and one of Tommy’s friends (? I know he was mentioned in this book, I just can’t remember if he was another kid or someone’s friend…)! Who doesn’t adore a good love triangle? They tend to leave me vacillating on who should be together… Man I could make pro and con lists for love triangles!
And if any of you guys are interested in giving the book a go, it is currently $0.99 on amazon for the Kindle edition, just saying…
So have any of you read Maggie Elizabeth Harrington? What did you think?