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Sunday, December 23, 2012

Bride of New France by Suzanne Desrochers


Bride of New France


Summary:
In 1669, Laure Beausejour, an orphan imprisoned with prostitutes, the insane and other forgotten women in Paris’ infamous Salpetriere, is sent across the Atlantic to New France as a Fille du roi. Laure once dreamed with her best friend Madeleine of using her needlework stills to become a seamstress on the Rue Saint-Honoré and to one day marry a gentleman. The King, however, needs French women in his new colony and he finds a fresh supply in the city’s largest orphanage. Laure and Madeleine know little of the place called New France, except for stories of ferocious winters and men who eat the hearts of French priests. To be banished to Canada is a punishment worse than death.
Bride of New France explores the challenges of coming into womanhood in a brutal time and place. From the moment she arrives in Ville-Marie (Montreal), Laure is expected to marry and produce children with a French soldier who can himself barely survive the harsh conditions of his forest cabin. But Laure finds, through her clandestine relationship with Deskaheh, an allied Iroquois, a sense of the possibilities in this New World.
What happens to a woman who attempts to make her own life choices in such authoritative times?
Bride of New France is a beautiful debut novel that explores a fascinating chapter in Canadian history.
Summary & Photo taken from Goodreads.com
Length: 294 pages (Softcover)
Publication Date: January 18th 2011 by Penguin Canada

Does it make me a bad Canadian if I say that I don't read very many novels written by Canadian authors? I hope not but it's the truth. I don't read many novels written by Canadian authors and I think it's a real shame so I'm hoping to make up for that in the new year. I think the main reason I have an issue with Canadian authors is because the books written by them tend to be literature which while I love the genre I can't read to many books like that or else I start feeling a bit pretentious.

Anyways last month I was browsing the shelves of my local library branch and I came across Bride of New Frances and after looking at the cover which I find to be gorgeous. Seriously, look at it. Isn't it a beaut? So once again you can see I was taken in by yet another pretty cover and we all know that can lead to the book being a hit or miss for me and this one was a miss.

The story starts off in France where we are introduced to Laure and her best friend Madeleine who are both living in Salpetriere hospital before they are whisked away to New France to be brides to the men who live in the rough, and often deadly New World in order to give the men a reason to stay and build the population of New France up thus lessening the burden of them on France if the settlers were to move back. While on the journey though Madeleine falls ill and ultimately passes away when the two girls reach their destination leaving Laure alone and unsure in the unwelcoming wilderness that is now her home.

While this book sounds like there is an air of adventure, and promise between the pages due to the fact that it's about a young woman who is now forced to start her life anew. Unfortunately this one wasn't particularly rich with historical detail, or an air of adventure even when she breaks a cultural taboo and has to do something that will break her heart. There was no emotional depth to Laure and I thought that was very unfortunate.

I had several problems with the novel. First off was the way it was told. I just couldn't get into it. Yes I read the book in it's entirety, but it wasn't at all what I expected. For me the whole novel lacked the ability to draw me in there was nothing engrossing about it at all. It lacked depth and read more as though the author were writing a summer of events that took place in a novel rather than writing the novel itself. I also had trouble connecting with Laure because very little about her character as well as the other characters and I found them to be very one dimensional.

The plot though was the biggest disappointment because of the way it was written like a summary of a novel. There was a lot of promise in the plot and I kept hoping that it would get better and become more engrossing as I went on but sadly it didn't. A lot more detail could have been paid towards the characters and the history of Canada then there was so for me this book just didn't live up to my expectations. It turned out to be more of a filler novel to me where I just read it to read it. I may have enjoyed bits and pieces of it here and there but ultimately the book jut wasn't for me and was mediocre at best.

If I were to recommend this novel it would probably be towards people that enjoy historical fiction set in Canada and historical fiction in general. While the book wasn't up to my standards for a good work of historical fiction that doesn't mean that you shouldn't give it a try yourself. If the author does write another novel I'm still more than willing to give her another try to see if I like her other works better.

It was okay
★ ★
To become a "Fan" of Suzanne Desrochers on Goodreads CLICK HERE
To visit Suzanne Desrochers' Website CLICK HERE


To purchase the book via Chapters Indigo CLICK HERE
To purchase the book via Kobo CLICK HERE
To purchase the book via Amazon CLICK HERE
To purchase the book via The Book Depository CLICK HERE
To purchase the book via Barnes & Noble CLICK HERE





6 comments:

  1. Sucks your quest has to continue for a good Canadian novel. At least that catches your interest

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Babe. Maybe you can find me a good Canadian book :)

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  2. Aww, that totally sucks. But I agree with you about this genre--it's totally not for me either. I just really don't care for it, but hey. To each his own, LOL. But I see that it isn't your own. Sorry that you didn't like it. :(

    Loves,
    Megan@The Book Babe

    ReplyDelete
  3. Bah. I too was taken in by this gorgeous cover and thought I might give it a try. (Alas, I have not as of yet.) I am also low on "literary reads" and like them sparingly, but I suppose I will be passing on this one.

    - Jessica @ Book Sake

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  4. Uh oh, I was looking forward to this book and hoping you would like it. I think I'll still keep it on my TBR to try for myself but it surely is not going to be on the priority list.

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  5. This is a fantastic website and I can not recommend you guys enough. Full of useful resource and great layout very easy on the eyes. Liga Spanyol

    ReplyDelete

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