Have you ever had the privilege of listening to a story where the characters are brought to life with their own voice and mannerisms? Where you sat enthralled as you listened to the story come alive for you in your imagination? If so, then you know you were in the presence of a true storyteller. Jean Stubbs is such a person.
Kit’s Hill was brought to life as the characters “spoke” in their different speech patterns. It was difficult for me at first to read these patterns but without them the story would have lost a significant part of itself. Ms. Stubbs does have an amazing gift to write with such ease between her characters with these patterns.
Ms. Stubbs’ story is set in Lancashire, England and begins in the year of 1760. Dorcas Wilde is a spinster of remarkable intelligence in an age where women do not normally possess such an education. She is also independent, logical and strong of character. Having been raised by her reverend father, she is trained to serve others and how to behave as is her station. Having found herself living with her aunt who is not the friendliest person to get along with, Dorcas is unsure how her life will unfold.
Ned Howarth is a farmer who owns Kit’s Hill. The farm has been in his family for generations and he is proud of it as well as the family that has given it is heritage. For three years Ned has wanted to be with Dorcas and upon his Mother’s death he begins his courtship of her. Although he loves Dorcas, he is aware that she doesn’t share the same feelings but believes she will in time. Dorcas makes her decision to marry Ned knowing she will be shunned by her family and friends as he is not among her “peers”.
This difference in Dorcas and Ned sets the storyline for the problems that Dorcas encounters from not only her own people but from Ned’s. Ned is a good man and deals with people as they are but he is aware that Dorcas will have to find her own place in their lives. He is unaware of all that Dorcas does endure. Eventually, Dorcas and Ned through tragedy, love, and faith build a life together.
Another reason I enjoyed this book, besides the depth of the characters and the various personalities employed, is the historical background used to aid the storyline. Ms. Stubbs wrote of the medical and agriculture reforms; the English and French aggressions and the English dissenters; and of course political corruption. Wrapping all of this together with the existing social differences between the characters of Dorcas and Ned, Ms. Stubbs has created a heartwarming tale of love and triumph.
Amazon Link: http://amzn.to/1NHxBLs