Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Journey of Josephine Cain

Book Review

The Journey of Josephine Cain is a book in the series An American Tapestry by Nancy Moser. This book is set in America, post-Civil War. Josephine is an ingénue socialite who lives in Washington DC. Her father was a famed Civil War general who has an important role in laying the track, building the transcontinental railroad. The story chronicled Josephine’s life from the assassination of President Lincoln to the completion of the railroad.

In the beginning of the book, Josephine was a spoiled, whiney, uninteresting, shallow young woman – a girl who insisted on having her own way. The book ended with Josephine marrying. She became a strong, intelligent young woman who confidently made her way in the Wild West. I liked the mature version of Josephine. The difficulty for me was the story was not long enough for Moser to develop Josephine’s growth as a character. The change from shallow Josephine to the interesting person she became was abrupt. I think I would enjoy reading more about Josephine as she was at the end of the book.

For history buffs, the story is an interesting chronicle of the period as the tracks are laid through Nebraska, Wyoming and finally on to Promontory Point in Utah. Moser painted a picture of the ruggedness and the depravity of the temporary towns that followed the railroad workers. There were multiple saloons, gangs of outlaws and a house of prostitution, all transportable from town to town. Moser is from Nebraska and she described the prairie well – from the tall grass as high as a man’s head to the gorgeous sunsets.

I enjoyed the character of Josephine’s Aunt Bernice. Frieda Schultz, Josephine’s ladies’ maid was also interesting and appealing. General Cain, Josephine’s father was difficult to figure out. He was a man with strong leadership talents. He made his daughter’s wishes come true, yet was absent from his marriage. Josephine’s mother was the mother you can be thankful you never had.

Over all, this book is a good story and I do recommend it. It portrays an interesting period in the history of the United States. Also, Moser fleshes out her characters well – especially the secondary characters – the ones who play a supporting role. It is also a book that showed the strength of women. Women who played an important role in settling the West.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

About the book

When a socialite from the nation's capital embarks on a journey to the Wild West, her life is changed forever.

A setting populated by hundreds of laborers, outlaws, and Indians is hardly the place for a wealthy general's daughter. But Josephine Cain is determined to visit her father, who supervises the day-to-day work involved in the grandest ambition of post-Civil War America: the building of the Transcontinental Railroad. Life with the railroad is far from the proper life Josephine is used to, and she faces deadly gunfights, harsh weather, and vigilante uprisings. She is torn between the West and the East; between her privileged upbringing and the challenges of a new frontier; between the pull of the suitable beau her parents approve of and an attraction to a rough but charming Irish railroad worker. But if Josephine is willing, she just might find a new life, a unique purpose . . . and true love.

About the Author

Nancy Moser is the best-selling author of more than twenty novels. She is a winner and two-time nominee of the Christy Award, and her latest novel was named to Booklist's "Top 10 Romance Novels of 2011." Nancy and her husband have three grown children and three grandchildren, and they live in the Midwest.

Learn more at Nancy at:

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