ABOUT THE BOOK
The daughter of a Mohawk mother and French father in 1759 Montreal, Catherine Duval finds it is easier to remain neutral in a world that is tearing itself apart. Content to trade with both the French and the British, Catherine is pulled into the fray against her wishes when her British ex-
fiance, Samuel Crane, is taken prisoner by her father. Samuel asks her to help him escape, claiming he has information that could help end the war.
Peace appeals to Catherine, but helping the man who broke her heart does not. She delays . . . until attempts on Samuel's life convince her he's in mortal danger. Against her better judgment she helps him flee by river, using knowledge of the landscape to creep ever closer to freedom. Their time together rekindles feelings she thought long buried, and danger seems to hound their every mile. She's risked becoming a traitor by choosing a side, but will the decision cost her even more than she anticipated?
MY THOUGHTS ABOUT
Between Two Shores by Jocelyn Green
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This new book by Jocelyn Green is a story steeped in history and rich in both the triumphs and the failings of the human spirit. I was immediately caught up in the story of a young girl who is part Mohawk Indian/part French and the choices that she was forced to make after moving from Quebec to Montreal. It is 1759 and Catherine Duval is involved in several struggles. She struggles constantly to please her alcoholic father but she is often verbally abused when he is intoxicated. It is during these moments that he taunts her about her heritage from her Indian mother. Catherine becomes a fur trader and she trades furs with both the British and the French while working out of a store in Canada. She has every intention of remaining neutral in the war that is raging but, with her decision to help her ex-fiance to deliver secret information to a British soldier, she realizes that neutrality isn't possible. Catherine begins a harrowing journey over the land and the rivers of Canada that could result in her being charged with treason.
Author Jocelyn Green has written a beautiful story of being caught between two cultures, two lands and two loyalties. Catherine Duval is also known as Catherine Stands-Apart and she is scarred emotionally by her father's cruelty. Even as my heart broke for her I questioned why she continued to stay; I rejoiced when she eventually realized that she wasn't responsible for the happiness of her father and she could therefore distance herself from him. Catherine is also torn over her relationship with her Mohawk brother and sister and the sudden reappearance of the man that she had once loved and lost.
There is so much to like about Between Two Shores. It is full of historical information and geographical detail. The French and Indian War that started over control of the Ohio Valley eventually turned into a full-scale war that involved several countries and Green's battle scenes were strinkinly real! I also learned much about the Canadian landscape because of the author's detailed description. I was reminded of the importance of the fur trade during this time and the
immense part that women played during this time. There are other female characters who also play heavily in this story and I greatly admired their independence and bravery but it is Catherine Duval's victory over doubts about her self-worth that makes this story so special! This is never more evident than when she replies to a comment about having two names. "What does it matter what we are called, when God alone can judge the heart?"
Between Two Shores is a wonderful read for anyone who enjoys historical fiction with a strong faith element. It is my first Jocelyn Green book but it certainly won't be my last!
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author and publisher but a positive review was not required.
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