Sary had a hard life and found that situations in life can change a person completely.
So much happened to this beautiful and rather naive woman. She was so very young when she married but soon became a young widow. Her husband had been shot and she was then forced to be under her brother, Seb's household. That’s how things back in the 1880's worked for women. Most women had no say so when it came to their direction in live. The man was in charge of his woman, his family and his word was taken without any question.
Once Sary was in her brother's care, both of them weren't happy about the situation. She found out that being under his orders was going to be a real threat to her. He was taking her to unsafe locations and forced her to go along with his rather unrealistic dreams. The gold rush was on and so is Seb's wild dream of striking it rich. Along the way Sary’s life is put in danger and she lives in a mining town with a tarp over her head. She ends up panning for gold in the Big Bear California gold mining town. The men give her "those looks" and she soon is raped and her brother dies in a mine shaft. Life is not good anywhere.
She ends up on her own and having to survive. Survival is the name of the game. The winters are hard and vicious. The mining town or outpost as they are called, doesn’t hold anything good for her. The beautiful, young naive woman is now a thing of the past.
She is now a gold miner seeking revenge against the wrongs dealt her. The town and its gold miners are soon to know a new Sary. A Sary who becomes an outlaw.
What happened to Sary's gold mining? Did she perhaps hit that once in a lifetime strike? Was there anyone, just one person, who would help Sary and just possibly become an attraction for romance?
She does love a man, but will that man stand up alongside her and exact the revenge that is due?
The author gives us a young woman, who had promise, even back when women were to be seen and not heard. But life stepped in as it always does and situations changed her. You feel such emotion for Sary at first. You want her flesh and blood brother to take good care of her, but he had ideas of his own. You want just someone to take her under their wing and help her. But the author gave us a woman, when under hard, cruel circumstances, stood up, took control and wasn't going for the "woman is seen and not heard" stereotype. Perhaps the author was giving us a look into the future, where women were heard along with being seen.
I loved that the author included many pictures to go along with the story. It gave a real look into the time and what Sary was facing. You are taken back to the time and place where the Gold Rush was on and people were wild with the fever of striking it rich. You could picture Sary alongside a river panning for gold. You hope she strikes it rich so she can get herself out of the horrible place.
The author keeps you in suspense at times wondering what will happen to Sary next. The author makes you wonder why Sary stayed with her mean brother. But as you read you realize that it's similar to today. Abuse has a way of enslaving you. But when Sary finally had had enough, she went out in a fury.
The story went along at a steady pace, not so fast that you couldn't take it all in. The development of Sary was amazing. I loved that she didn't stay the quiet, reserved woman she started out as. She stood up, tall and filled with revenge.
So if you like reads that are western filled, suspenseful at times, have a heroine who deserves praise for what she stands for, then this book will give you that.
While battling a brutal town and one obsessed man, Sary must change into a ruthless, determined gold miner/outlaw in 1890s California. Upon the untimely death of her husband, Sary is forced into her brother’s charge. Neither is pleased with this arrangement. He's an impotent, sadistic dreamer with ideas of striking gold, using his sister as his mule.
Sary finds herself in a surreal nightmare living under a tarp, panning for gold, and looked on lustfully by the debauched in the closest town. A brutal attack by Delacorte’s son, her brother’s accidental death, the discovery of a gold vein as big as Texas, and surviving winter all come together to make Sary a thing of legend and witchery. She is now hunted as fair game, barely escaping with her life.
Ultimately, Sary returns exacting revenge in an ultimate showdown with a little help from the man she loves.