Having earned undergrad and grad degrees in history, plus having spent a year toward a doctorate in same, I’ve always had a healthy fascination with long ago events and individuals (whether common folk or famous personages), with major trends and traditions, and how such evolved through time. It’s interesting to dig deep into how people carried on – how they managed – during the great epochs of past; how they lived, loved, survived, overcome, left legacies and lineages to carry on their name and bloodline. How each generation is beholden to the last, but still tasked with creating its personal stamp for the next generation to come.
I’ve loved the sport of basketball since childhood. I greatly like Chinese people and China as a country. In fact, I have several Chinese friends with whom I play pick-up basketball games most every week. In addition, I’m an evangelical Christian. I love action and adventure, both in movies and in reading. I’m a very passionate (romantic) person. So it almost seems natural I would write an historical novel with romance and danger that combines all these things into a unified story.
In some ways, the saga of SARAH QUANLI has elements of both The Good Earth and East of Eden. It’s all about the lives and loves of several generations of a Chinese family, begun when a handsome Scottish missionary marries a beautiful Chinese girl. The newly published Book One covers the time period from the birth of David Adam MacDougall in 1882 to the birth of his first child, a daughter, named Sarah Quanli MacDougall in 1916. Books Two, Three, and Four – still to come – will take the reader through the brutality and turmoil of strife-torn twentieth century China, and later, concurrently, through the social upheaval of the 1960s and beyond in golden California. _____________________________
Publication Date: October 26, 2012
Synopsis: The beautiful yet deceitful Rossalyn McDonald had twisted the knife deep in David Adam MacDougall’s big heart. He was extraordinarily handsome: chiseled muscles, kindly soul, thoughtful personality, and totally faithful. Any other lass in his Scottish Highlands village would have cheated her own sister to become his bride.
Now David’s entire being felt broken into a thousand pieces. Now he only wanted to reach the faraway city of Beiping China where he was called to be a missionary. But before arriving in that mysterious mistress of the orient, he would face uncertain dangers.
The year is 1904. The bloody Boxer Rebellion is only four years past. Much of northern China still seethes with undercurrents of resentment and hatred of all things Western. If David can just make it to the ancient city with body and soul intact, if he can just survive, there he’ll find his new purpose, his new home, and his new people.
There, he’ll meet the woman he comes to believe is the love of his life. The lithe, athletic, saucy, highly intelligent and equally independent Xiu Li!
It's my first time to read a Historical Romance book so it took time for me to adjust to the writing style of the author.
Basically, the book is about David McDougall's journey from childhood to a grown up man. The book thoroughly narrated his experiences as a child and that explained who how he became to be a wonderful, kind and gorgeous man. Someone who seems to have it all- a great family, friends and love of his life; didn't guarantee a problem-free life. He was betrayed by his fiance and he was badly hurt. So he decided to take a journey to fulfill his calling in Beiping, China.
Let's start with the positive side of the book. I started to like the book when David made his journey to Beiping. It was definitely a long one but still there were entertaining and full of action scenes. The main character is totally likable. I can't see any flaws about him, which can be a positive or a negative trait but I'll consider it a positive one. I also liked how the title came from. I was having doubts as to who Sarah Quanli was, and then boom!NO SPOILERS!
Then let's go to the "not so" positive sides. First, there are a lot of supporting characters that made me confused at times. I don't know if that's a part of it because it's a historical book. Anyway,there were also a lot of side stories that I think are mostly unnecessary. I would have liked it better if the flow is organized.
The book talks more about David's life and his religious journey, which made the romance part cut short. Since this is a Historical Romance, I would really liked it if the romance part is the focus of the book.
Nevertheless, I still enjoyed the book! I had fun with it, for the most parts. So if you're a fan of Historical genre, you may give this a chance.
*Disclaimer: The book has been provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. My views and opinions on the book are all my own.*
"God is so real. His words are so real. His plan and Purpose for your life is so real. Reach out to him. Reach out, and he will meet you more than halfway, I assure you."