Recently Reread: Into the Wilderness by Sara Donati

Into the Wilderness by Sara Donati

When Elizabeth Middleton, twenty-nine years old and unmarried, leaves her Aunt Merriweather’s comfortable English estate to join her father and brother in the remote mountain village of Paradise on the edge of the New York wilderness, she does so with a strong will and an unwavering purpose: to teach school. It is December of 1792 when she arrives in a cold climate unlike any she has ever experienced. And she meets a man different from any she has ever encountered — a white man dressed like a Native American, tall and lean and unsettling in his blunt honesty. He is Nathaniel Bonner, also know to the Mohawk people as Between-Two-Lives.

Into the Wilderness by Sara Donati

As someone who had a very healthy(!) obsession with The Last of the Mohicans after the movie came out, it felt like Christmas morning when – years ago – my aunt handed me her copy of a book she’d just read: Into the Wilderness.

It was like reading the movie, but the – lengthy – book gave me so many more hours of entertainment. I remember not being able to put it down, to the extent I completely stopped studying for my university exams so that I could finish it!

The good thing about putting a book aside for a few years before picking it up again is that so much of it feels new during a reread. I enjoyed it just as much this time round.

Author Sara Donati has done some incredible research to recreate Georgian-era colonial America, especially when it comes to the Native American characters and cultures. The wild setting means the book is one big adventure from start to finish, an adventure we see through the eyes of the English heroine, for whom the world she now lives in is as new as it is for the reader.

The twenty-fourth anniversary of The Last of the Mohicans

film_lastofthemohicans

I have no idea why, but The Last of the Mohicans premiered in France, not the United States, on the 26th of August, 1992. The US premiere came on the 25th of September.

I credit this film (I’ve never read the book the whole way through) with a lot of my interests now. Of course back then you couldn’t just jump on the internet and learn stuff and find similar stories, but I tried my best!

The Last of the Mohicans 1992

I have a few books I recommend quite often, that are set in the same location and time period as this film.

Into the Wilderness by Sara DonatiSurrender (MacKinnon’s Rangers #1) by Pamela Clare

Untamed by Pamela ClareDefiant by Pamela Clare

Into the Wilderness

Surrender Review and Link

Untamed Review and Link

Defiant Review and Link

And as a bonus: behind the scenes on the film set. What dorks!

Behind the scenes on set The Last of the Mohicans

Fan Longevity

Bared to You by Sylvia DayA Kiss of Midnight by Lara Adrian

Now, clearly there are books that stand the test of time. There have to be, because otherwise my literature degree was a waste of time!

However, with genre fiction things seem to move fast and date fast and then you look back and wonder what you were thinking a few years ago when you loved a book.

I find this a bit sad, and I was thinking back on books that have lasted for me. I’m talking about books about a decade old here, not from many decades ago. Perhaps the mid-2000s was a stellar era for genre fiction, but whatever it is I still have plenty of books from that time that I can still call favourites.

The reason I started thinking about this was because I was checking out Sylvia Day’s Pinterest account, and she has a board dedicated to pictures of fan tattoos. It reminded me of other Big Name series where readers went and got permanent markings because they enjoyed a book so much.

For example, Lara Adrian’s heroines in her Midnight Breed series all have a crescent moon and teardrop birthmark, and fans now have that tattooed all over themselves.

And surely nothing beats the infamous Twilight tattoos, the most infamous of all perhaps being this one:

 twilight-tattoo-edward-cullen

However, fads are fads for a reason. Beards can be shaved off, but all those stretched ears young men are sporting these days are probably not going to be considered great few years down the track. Permanent changes probably aren’t always the best idea!

Secrets of a Summer Night by Lisa KleypasTo the Brink by Cindy Gerard

Secrets of a Summer Night (2004) is still a precious historical romance for me. To the Brink (2005) still remains my idea of the perfect romantic suspense. I didn’t catch any sleep flying from India to Sri Lanka to Australia in 2005 because I was so engrossed in The Tea Rose, a book I still love. I’m lucky I passed my final university exams because I was so caught up in Into the Wilderness, and I still love that book so much.

However, series I can still look back on fondly – the Black Dagger Brotherhood, for example – are no longer on my OMG Squee! list of books, and I’m certain I’d have regretted getting a tattoo about them.

Remember that infamous Twilight Moms group with their super-active site? I visited there a couple of times out of sheer curiosity, and there were women my age and older saying there will never be a day in their life where they won’t pick up and read part of a Twilight book, and how depressed they feel knowing there will be no more of Bella and Edward. Now the message board doesn’t even exist, and I’m quite sure those women have got on with their lives just fine.

I have no idea what I’m trying to say here. Maybe wait a decade before you get a tattoo declaring your love for a fictional man?

I suppose most people have that select group of long-standing favourites. I suppose they also have a long list of books they were crazy about once, and now can’t remember why that was.