Harcourt’s Mountain. Elaine Dodge. Tirgearr Publishing. November 2013. 345 pp. E-Book. ASIN#: B00EK0V2Y4.
Hope Booker has no memories of how she wound up knocked out and thrown into the lower level hold of a so-called “Bride” ship. Not long after waking up with a huge bump on her head, she finds herself about to be auctioned off. It’s really more like a slave auction than “bride” auction and it’s clear from those bidding for the women that they need a worker who clearly won’t live much longer after they are bought, abused, prostituted or enslaved. The reader can feel Hope’s astonishment and fear as the bidding begins for her life’s services.
Luke Harcourt is a most unusual man and one wonders why he’s watching the bride auction as it seems he despises the business. He’s a very tender yet strong guy whose sensitivity and compassion, as well as his quick perception about Hope being unable to survive the typical treatment accorded those who come off the bride ship are most unusual for a man in this 1867 British Columbian world. Anyone who lives here has to be very, very tough to survive. However, the trials and tribulations Hope and Luke are about to undergo leave the reader stunned!
Luke has promised he won’t touch Hope and obviously this is the story of how they fall in love. Hope is cautious initially and has to learn to trust Luke before that will turn to deep caring and love for him. Physical dangers are not the only threat to Hope’s survival; the animal and natural threats to these settler’s lives are present on every page which certainly captures the attention and total immersion into the story as one never stops wanting to flip the pages to find out what happens next!
Luke himself will be kidnapped onto a ship where his life will be in danger and it doesn’t seem like he will be able to escape from the evil, sadistic man who is planning Luke’s demise. To say more about the future of Hope and Luke would be a spoiler for sure!
Elaine Dodge has crafted a romance and a historical thriller novel that is ripe for those who thrive on adventures and evolving romance!!! Very nicely done, Ms. Dodge!