Wednesday, June 5, 2024

SHELTERWOOD by Lisa Wingate, Reviewed by Paula Shreckhise #ReleaseDay June 4

A striking story recounting the unjust and criminal actions of powerful people who took advantage of innocent tribal children in Oklahoma in 1909. Using extensive research and shedding light on the efforts of Kate Barnard, a woman on the forefront of politics even before women won the vote, this was a compelling read.

But the heart-wrenching story is the resilience of the orphans who did everything to survive in the untenable conditions of the times. It can be raw in places as the awful truth is conveyed.
The 1990 part of this dual time dealt with widowed Val, a Park Ranger with a seven year old son and how she tries to fit in with her new position and its prejudice against women rangers. It was interesting how the two timelines converged during a complex case.

I am a fan of dual timelines but this one was a bit jarring when it went back and forth between the two. I would still recommend it for the exceptional historical value.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from Random House via NetGalley. All opinions are mine alone.* 4 stars and a clean read

BackCover Blurb:

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours comes a sweeping novel inspired by the untold history of women pioneers who fought to protect children caught in the storm of land barons hungry for power and oil wealth.

Oklahoma, 1909. Eleven-year-old Olive Augusta Radley knows that her stepfather doesn’t have good intentions toward the two Choctaw girls boarded in their home as wards. When the older girl disappears, Ollie flees to the woods, taking six-year-old Nessa with her. Together they begin a perilous journey to the remote Winding Stair Mountains, the notorious territory of outlaws, treasure hunters, and desperate men. Along the way, Ollie and Nessa form an unlikely band with others like themselves, struggling to stay one step ahead of those who seek to exploit them . . . or worse.

Oklahoma, 1990. Law enforcement ranger Valerie Boren-Odell arrives at newly minted Horsethief Trail National Park seeking a quiet place to balance a career and single parenthood. But no sooner has Valerie reported for duty than she’s faced with local controversy over the park’s opening, a teenage hiker gone missing from one of the trails, and the long-hidden burial site of three children unearthed in a cave. Val’s quest for the truth wins an ally among the neighboring Choctaw Tribal Police but soon collides with old secrets and the tragic and deadly history of the land itself.

In this emotional and enveloping novel, Lisa Wingate traces the story of children abandoned by the law and the battle to see justice done. Amid times of deep conflict over who owns the land and its riches, Ollie and Val traverse the rugged and beautiful terrain, each leaving behind one life in search of another. 

Ballantine Books, June, 2024
Available in digital ebook, paperback, hardcover, and audiobook:

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for the review, Paula!


Share This Post

How Our Giveaways Work: The Official Rules

We, the ladies of Inkwell Inspirations, would love to give free stuff to everybody. Since we can't, we will often have a giveaway in conjunction with a specific post. Unless otherwise stated, one winner will be drawn from comments left on that post between the date it was published and the end of the giveaway as determined in the post. Entries must be accompanied by a valid email address. This address is used only to contact the commenter in the event that he/she is the winner, and will not be sold, distributed, or used in any other fashion. The odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. NO PURCHASE, PLEDGE, OR DONATION NECESSARY TO ENTER OR TO WIN. ALL FEDERAL, STATE, LOCAL AND MUNICIPAL LAWS AND REGULATIONS APPLY. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED.