Monday, February 1, 2010

Roses ~ A Breathtaking Saga! ~Book Review and Giveaway

The most enjoyable epic novel I have read in years Leila Meacham’s volume Roses is sure to become a modern classic! Roses is a saga as breath taking and sweeping as Gone with the Wind; A generational epic approaching the drama and tragedy of The Thorn Birds! I was drawn immediately to the depth of characters and the dramatic, wistful, and charming southern setting.

The story of the three founding families of a Texas town, Howbutker, bound together by the messages of the roses they nurture and torn apart by loyalty to heritage and love misguided. It is a brilliantly and beautifully rendered tale spanning the gamete of human emotion and tendering the archetypal theme of the lure and desire of land, a desire so great that it destroys love and conscience. Reminiscent of Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind --Scarlett’s undying fight for Tara--and Mordecai Richler’s The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz--in which land is all that matters--Meacham takes the theme to new heights, her matriarch Mary Toliver an even more admirable and formidable character than Scarlett O’Hara ever was. I felt the depths of Meacham’s characters, delved into their private thoughts and ambitions and gained a peak into their souls.

Three generations are nearly destroyed by the curse of Somerset--the Tolivers‘ cotton plantation-- the story told through the experiences of characters embroiled in decisions which will change the course of life for so many. Mary Toliver, a young woman who inherits her family’s cotton plantation under ill-thought circumstances, Percy Warwick, the son of the Warwick lumber barons whom Mary was meant to marry, and Rachel ,Mary’s grand-niece and perhaps the future Toliver heir!

Bewildered by Mary’s decision to end the Toliver’s generational rein over Somerset, lawyer and friend Amos strives to understand a family he thought he had understood for years:

“”What story don’t I know, Mary? I’ve read everything ever printed about the Tolivers and Warwicks and DuMonts, not to mention having lived among you for forty years. I’ve been privy to everything affecting each of you since I came to Howbutker. Whatever secrets you may have harbored would have come out. I know you.”
She lowered her lids briefly, fatigue clearly evident in their sepia-tinged folds. When she raised them again, her gaze was soft with affection. “Amos, dear, you came into our lives when our stories were done. You have known us at our best, when all our sad and tragic deeds were behind us and we were living with their consequences...”” (Meacham 2010: 7)


Consequences and sacrifice haunt the lives of all who remain! When love does not always win out over land, pride, and loyalty to legacy, readers question whether they cross into the territory of selfish ambition and disloyalty to loved ones. When twists of fate cause harboured false assumptions, passion, and love turn to rage, jealousy, and vengeance in this drama spanning the twentieth century!

Category:FICTION
Format:HARDCOVER BOOK
Publish Date:1/6/2010
Price:$24.99/$29.99
ISBN:9780446550000
Pages:624

Northern Mama readers will be as engrossed as I! Hachette is offering five copies of the Roses by Leila Meacham!
To Enter:
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Giveaway open to US and Canadian residents. Giveaway closes February 14th, 2010 10:00pm CT. Read Giveaway Rules for details.

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