Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Wonderland Creek by Lynn Austin

Alice Grace Ripley is a bookworm. She works in a library in the year 1936 during the Great Depression. Could anything be more boring than Alice's life? But, wait, she is also a do-gooder, and she collects books for the library in the underprivileged town of Acorn, Kentucky, in the heart of coal country. When she decides to deliver the books herself, Alice's life becomes an adventure with mystery and romance mixed in.

Alice, the city girl used to all the modern conveniences, finds herself in a mountain town with no indoor plumbing, no washing machines, or electricity. She's supposed to stay two weeks, but she ends up staying much longer. She learns to ride a horse so that she can deliver library materials to patrons in the backwoods as part of a Depression-era government program. She gets very involved in the lives of the locals---their peculiarities, their secrets, and an on-going feud.

I have been a fan of Lynn Austin's writing for a long time. She has the gift of taking you back to the historical period she's writing about. Wonderland Creek is written in the first person. I found myself smiling as Alice familiarized herself with the rustic facilities like outhouses and wringer washing machines. Her experience in Acorn makes her realize how spoiled she had been back home, and she discovers that she can make a difference. The story has everything---a great setting, romance, humor, suspense, mystery.

Read a sample and/or buy Wonderland Creek on Amazon.

Check out my other reviews of Austin's books here.

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