Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Review: The Wives of Henry Oades

From Amazon:
When Henry Oades accepts an accountancy post in New Zealand, his wife, Margaret, and their children follow him to exotic Wellington. But while Henry is an adventurer, Margaret is not. Their new home is rougher and more rustic than they expected—and a single night of tragedy shatters the family when the native Maori stage an uprising, kidnapping Margaret and her children.

For months, Henry scours the surrounding wilderness, until all hope is lost and his wife and children are presumed dead. Grief-stricken, he books passage to California. There he marries Nancy Foreland, a young widow with a new baby, and it seems they’ve both found happiness in the midst of their mourning—until Henry’s first wife and children show up, alive and having finally escaped captivity.

Narrated primarily by the two wives, and based on a real-life legal case, The Wives of Henry Oades is the riveting story of what happens when Henry, Margaret, and Nancy face persecution for bigamy. Exploring the intricacies of marriage, the construction of family, the changing world of the late 1800s, and the strength of two remarkable women, Johanna Moran turns this unusual family’s story into an unforgettable page-turning drama.

My Review:
I cannot begin to express how much this book pulled me in. I was so caught up in the drama! The first wife and children get captured and are presumed dead, and then the heart break! OMG! I was riveted! This book reads like a soap opera, almost. I loved that the two main women in this book learned to interact. I don't think I would be able to cope if something like this were to happen to me and my husband! There were spots where it got a wee bit slow, but those weren't enough to take away from the story or make it boring. I really did enjoy reading this book and highly recommend it.

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books (February 23, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 034551095X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345510952

**I was given a free copy in return for an honest review!**


  1. Thanks for the review...I can see from your description how the book could pull you in so easily.

  2. I'm reading this one, too! I agree-- it's pulling me in as well. A pleasant surprise, for sure.

  3. I've been watching the full season of New Zealand's Next Top Model lately, and wanting to learn more about the country's history--this sounds like the perfect way to do that and still be entertained. Thanks!

  4. This sounds really, really good. Thanks for the review!

    Diary of an Eccentric

  5. Thanks so much, Melissa. You really know how to make a writer's day.
    Happy holidays,
    Johanna Moran

  6. Johanna (if you come back and see this!) Thank YOU for such a great book! I loved it! I'll keep my eye out for more of your work! :) Happy Holidays! Thanks for stopping by!


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