“…these people showed more fruits of being true followers of God than those in England who attended church faithfully and quoted scriptures…”
I am completely obsessed with early colonial America, especially the lost colony of Roanoke… honestly I’ll read anything that deals with the topic. Elinor is the story of the first governor of Virginia’s daughter who crosses the Atlantic with her husband to build the first settlement. What they encounter is a harsh climate and unsettled relations with the natives of the area. This particular story covers the first handful of years after their arrival. After a short settlement period, Elinor’s father departs back to England to update Sir Raleigh and request more supplies. He ends up stuck there as England is drawn into war with Spain and the settlement must go on without him. Elinor and her husband are quite religious and so the story relies heavily on their faith and desire to convert others. As they face hurricanes wiping out their settlement, they must move due to the salt tainted land. They find themselves embraced by one group of natives while others want vengeance for bringing sickness to their people. Elinor goes through some terrible trials and yet her faith shines through as she endures. Her resilience and desire for peace and forgiveness are unlike anything I’ve ever seen.
This novel is loosely based on the true happenings of the colony as we have the governor’s surviving writings. I love that we get a story that is written in the language of the time but is also very readable. The author is clear that she used spellings and wording of the time although our understandings have evolved. I appreciated that level of detail. Handling the relationships of the colonists and the natives is hard but I feel like this was a fair representation of how misunderstanding and differing world views really defined the challenges and sometimes bloodshed of the era. Yet, there is also kindness, a desire to connect and hope. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Thanks to Netgalley for access. All opinions above are my own.
What’s your first read of December?