Name of Book
The Drifter by Susan Wiggs
Fiction or non fiction?
Type of book
Historical romance but set in the 19th century with modern themes, such as females surviving on their own and taking jobs such as Doctors, rather than midwives; lust; pregnancy out of wedlock; and addiction.
An outlaw, arrives in the dead of night, and tries to find a doctor in a small town in America. He intends to kidnap the doctor in order to treat his sick wife who is on a leaky ship bound for Canada. The story revolves around what the outlaw and his wife did and where they originally met, together with the story of the kidnap and its ultimate consequences for the two female doctors in the practice. The story often has flashback sequences mixed into the various chapters but rather than being annoying, these are well organised and fit well with the remainder of the story, giving the reader an insight into why the characters react in particular ways. This is set in 1894 and the author note at the back states that although it is fiction many of the events are based on true events of the period.
Jackson Underhill (AKA Jack Tower) is the outlaw running for the hills of Canada with his sick wife, Carrie. He is well described in the book and you yearn to discover more about him and why he is running, as this is not fully explained in the first chapter.
Carrie Underhill (AKA Caroline Willis) is the sick wife that Jackson wants treating and has kidnapped the doctor for this purpose.
Leah Mundy the Doctor who is kidnapped by Jackson Underhill and is a very strong willed female who is misunderstood by the townspeople she assists.
Penelope another female doctor who is mainly discussed by the other characters and engages in a correspondence with Leah Mundy but joins the practice in the last few chapters.
Joel Santana the US Marshall searching for Jack Tower and Caroline Willis. His quest is described with varying degrees of humour.
Would you read anything else by this author?
Yes, I already have, The Firebrand. I found that both books are extremely good and found it very hard to put either down and consequently had many late nights until I had completed them both.
In my humble opinion, I believe that The Firebrand is better but this is a good book nevertheless.
Paper back or hard back?
I have only got a paper back version, but may be available in hard back.
Mira Books, which is a registered trade mark of Harlequin Enterprises. First published in 1999. Printed and bound in Spain by Litografia Roses, SA, Barcelona.
Mira Books, Eton House, 18-24 Paradise Road, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 1SR.
Other books by this author
The Firebrand, The Mistress, The Hostage, The Charm School, The Lightkeeper and The Horse Masters Daughter.
Susan Wiggs was educated at Harvard and became a mathematics professor before turning to writing full time. She has a website www.susanwiggs.com
£5.99 on the back of book, 9.35 euros, IR £7.45, although Amazon.com are offering it at £3.48, although this may be a used copy. I bought mine from work, we have a shelf for used books where we give a donation to charity.
What book/magazines are you currently reading? Take a Break magazine, Practical Family History magazine, Mirror newspaper, Derbyshire Times, and a book about Georgina Spencer, Duchess of Devonshire, which I keep in the car to read when I am waiting for people to get ready. I can read several books at once and still remember my place in each of them without confusing the storylines. Looking out for other books by this author my mother has got 2 other books, which I will endeavour to read as soon as practical.
It isn't easy to be a female physician in 1894, but Leah Mundy is fiercely committed to healing her fellow humans. Being awakened in the dark of night to heal the sick is a common occurrence, but never before has she woke to a threatening gun barrel and a dangerous stranger demanding her services. Outlaw Jackson Underhill is grimly determined that the doctor will save his childhood friend, but nothing about his difficult and dark past has prepared him for the changes the beautiful doctor will bring to his life. When Leah manages to disable his sailboat and force him to bring his wife to her boarding home to be cared for, Jackson has no option but to comply, setting forces in motion that will change both of their lives forever. Dr. Leah Mundy is a strong but emotionally vulnerable woman who has struggled her entire life to win the approval of her difficult, indifferent father. Now that he is dead, she is determined to build a life on Puget Sound's beautiful Whidbey Island. Accused of committing a murder he can't deny, outlaw Jackson Underhill is a man on the run, committed to saving his childhood friend while eluding the law. Leah is a woman who cannot leave the island that has become her sanctuary and Jackson Underhill is a man who cannot stay. Reason and logic tell them that they should never have fallen in love, but their hearts ignore all warnings. Inexorably drawn together by circumstance and fate, what possible resolution can bring them happiness and not disaster? Thrown together by chance, they find a love that neither of them had ever dared hope for - but darker forces and old alliances threaten their chance at happiness. With crisp, clean writing, Ms. Wiggs deftly weaves a seamless tale set against the background of the sea and sky of the Pacific Northwest. The beauty of Puget Sound pulses from every page, elevating the land and elements of nature to the level of a living character that is essential to the healing of Jackson and Leah's inner scars. Emotionally intense and well-plotted, The Drifter has all the components of a great summer read and is a jewel of a novel.