Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Historical Drama and Romance in the Dakota Territory

Humiliated by the man she thought would offer her marriage, Sophia decides to become a missionary. She was totally surprised when Congressman Rexford Montgomery proposed marriage to Annabelle, her roommate. Instead of remaining at the woman's college in New York where she was the French instructor, Sophia decides to take advantage of her Russian heritage and become a missionary to China. Instead of China, she finds herself in the Dakota Territory at a Ponca village as the schoolteacher, and, of course, there is a handsome Agency carpenter, Will, helping her make the school livable.

If you like historical fiction, I highly recommend this book. Sophia is an engaging character. She comes from the Russian nobility and is constantly making small mistakes because of her background. She never expected to become a missionary and instead of a traditional Protestant background, she grew up in the Russian Orthodox Church. 

The portrayal of the Ponca Indians is delightful. It's historically accurate and gives a very clear picture of what the Indians suffered after being deprived of their lands and placed in Agencies by the white men. If for no other reason, learning about the Poncas is a good reason to read this book.

I reviewed this book for the Thomas Nelson Booksneeze Program.