Tag Archives: David Bowles

Adam’s Daughters (Westward Sagas Book 2) by David Bowles Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A young woman who survived a deadly battle must navigate life in the years following the formation of a new nation and raise her siblings as her own children as they deal with an untamed land in author David Bowles’s “Adam’s Daughters”, the second book in the Westward Sagas series. 

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The Synopsis

The Westward Sagas tell the story of the Mitchell family’s 100-year odyssey west from Pennsylvania to Texas. In Adam’s Daughters: Book 2, Peggy Mitchell, a survivor of the Battle of Guilford Courthouse, grows up in Jonesborough, Tennessee during the tumultuous first twenty years of the nation’s existence. Though haunted by memories of war, she matures into strong, independent young woman who is courted by Andrew Jackson and who has a freed slave as her best friend. Her younger brothers and sisters become her surrogate children and students. Together the children of Adam and Elizabeth take on renegade Indians, highwaymen, and the hardships of an untamed land. 

The Review

This was yet another engaging and thoughtful historical fiction read in this expansive historical fiction series. The striking balance between the history of the story’s setting and the events happening around the cast of characters with the emotional core of this family’s struggles and journey overall made this a captivating read. The heavy tone the narrative strikes reflects the heaviness of the era, with every day a fight for survival and many people having to fight ignorance and mistrust of one another to avoid violence and conflict.

The standouts of this novel to me were the strength the author portrayed in protagonist Peggy with the rich amount of history and culture the narrative featured. As a longtime fan of history, I found it unique that the author would hone in on such a specific era of the nation’s first founding years, in the aftermath of the war and families pushing to find their place in this new country. The way in which Peggy stepped up into the role of both sister and mother to her siblings and found herself pushing against many of their young society’s ideas of what is acceptable or not, from her friendship with a freed slave who had become more like family to the misclassification of Native Americans as all being “savages”, showcased her strength and will of character, and a worthy heir to continue the Mitchell family in her grandmother’s and parents absence.

The Verdict

Thought-provoking, entertaining, and rich with history, author David Bowles’s “Adam’s Daughters” is a must-read historical fiction read from the post-American Revolution days and a great second entry into this historical fiction series. The detail of the landscape of this fledgling nation and the hardships of traveling and living off the land highlighted the strong nature of these characters and kept the reader invested until the book’s final pages. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today! 

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

David Bowles, a native of Austin, Texas, lives in San Antonio with his best friend and constant companion Lulubelle, a yellow Lab. He grew up listening to stories of his ancestors told by family members in the generation before him. The stories fascinated David so much that he grew up to become a tale-spinner, spinning tales through the written word in The Westward Sagas and through the spoken word speaking to groups of both adults and children. David started writing stories of his family to ensure that his children and grandchildren had accurate records of the family history. However, while the original versions, written in narrative textbook style, did maintain the records, they didn t maintain the interest of the readers. So he used his imagination and creativity to fill in the gaps of what might have happened when the details weren t available. He created dialogue and scenes to add true life drama to the story of the Mitchell Family from colonial days to the settlement of the West. He hopes these stories fascinate his readers as much as the stories of his ancestors have always fascinated him.

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Spring House (Westward Sagas Book One) by David Bowles Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

Families of both Scottish and Irish descent settling into the colony of North Carolina find themselves fighting to not only survive but thrive in the new world in author David Bowles’s “Spring House”, the first book in the Westward Sagas series.

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The Synopsis

The Westward Sagas tell the stories of the lives of Scots-Irish families struggling to find happiness on the new frontier. Spring House, the first book of the series, begins in North Carolina in 1762 and paints a vivid picture of colonial life in the backwoods of the North State. Adam Mitchell fought to protect his family and save his farm, but his home was destroyed by British troops in the Battle of Guilford Courthouse, and his corn fields were turned into fields of death.Finalist in the Historical Fiction category of the National Indie Excellence 2007 Book Awards.

The Review

This was a powerful and moving historical fiction read. The intimate look into the lives of these ordinary families just trying to make a home for themselves and how the events of the Revolutionary War would impact them was so moving to read about. The atmosphere and tone the author struck in his writing allowed for some engaging moments between the reader and the narrative, giving a sense of urgency and the scenes themselves had some depth thanks to the great use of imagery in the writing. 

Yet it was the balance the author struck between history and character-driven narratives. The story of protagonist Adam and his pursuit of what would later be known as the “American Dream” was great to see, and whether intentional or not, showcased every immigrant’s dream of finding a place to call home, free to be themselves and without fear of persecution. The detail of historical events and figures made the story feel much more alive, and the captivating moments where these families were able to set aside their differences in everything from politics to faith and instead focus on surviving together against insurmountable odds showed the true heart of what this nation’s foundation was meant to be.

The Verdict

Thought-provoking, entertaining, and character-driven, author David Bowles’s “Spring House” is a brilliant historical fiction novel and the best introduction novel to the Westward Sagas series. The rich setting and historical facts layered into the personal character growth and emotional narrative allowed readers to feel connected to both the story and the period of time in a really unique way. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

David A. Bowles is a fifth generation Austinite. Both parents from early Travis County pioneers. His great grandmother Elnora Van Cleve, is recorded as the first birth in Austin, Texas during the days of the Republic. The author and his dog Becka travel in a class A motor-coach they call home, telling and writing the stories of the Westward Sagas. David grew up listening to stories of his ancestors told by his elders. Their stories so fascinated him that he became a professional story-teller, spinning tales through the Westward Sagas as well as the spoken word. He is a member of the National Story Telling Network and the Tejas Storyteller Association. David entertains groups frequently about his adventures on the open road and the books he has written. All four books in the Westward Sagas series have won awards. He is presently writing the sequel to Comanche Trace which won 1st Place at the North Texas Book Festival.

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