Usually, when I hear anything remotely related to “Daylight Savings Time,” I want to throw things. Last night, however, it occurred to me that I’d have an extra hour to get my next review read–The Light Before Day. And that’s a good thing.
Because when it comes to Suzanne Woods Fisher, I tend to like to read slowly… savor.
So, while the rest of Ridgecrest slumbered all snug in their beds, with visions of clocks rolling back in their heads, I sat in my trusty booth 14 at Denny’s, got my 1667 NaNoWriMo words written, and then settled in for a long autumn’s read.
About ten minutes into the book, I peeked at the back to see if there’d be a fourth book. My throat constricted as I saw advertisements for other books by Ms. Fisher… but none about Nantucket.
For a moment, I almost decided that I wouldn’t read the book. Yes, I’d requested the review copy. No, it wouldn’t be right to receive a free book and then not take a moment to help other readers decide if they wanted it. However, the idea of saying goodbye… Ouch.
That left a conundrum. Violate my conscience (unconscionable!) or disappoint myself (disappointing is an understatement)?
And that’s when the thought hit me. Would I be wasting my time having read the first two if I gave up on the third just because I didn’t want it to end? Would I want readers to do that when my final books appeared? And lastly…
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Is the Nantucket Legacy Worth the Time to Read?
Dumb question, right? Anyone who has read any book by Suzanne Woods Fisher knows that her books are always worth the time to read.
But this series holds something that few others do. Among the pages of these books, you find characters who creep into your heart and build a home there. Like friends and family, you sometimes want to hug them and others wish to shake them.
The settings begin to feel familiar—as if you know which way to turn as you walk down the street. Sometimes, I’m convinced that if I needed one of the series’ famed “pieces of eight,” I could find that tree with no problem. I’d dig, just like Great Mary Coffin did.
It won’t be a popular thing to mention, but I’m going to. One of the things I loved and respected most was that the human rights issues addressed in these books held a strong authenticity that most historical novels do not. The Quaker roots of the people in the series make those human rights attitudes realistic—believable.
Yeah. I’m going to say it.
Too often, modern sensibilities are thrust into historical fiction without regard for the plausibility of it. It’s as if every author thinks they’re the only person making an “unusual” character by giving that person modern ideas regarding “rights” whether racial, gender, or otherwise. Yeah. It’s not believable and irritating.
Because you see, when we rewrite history to make people hold ideals they didn’t, when we sanitize the past with the disinfectant of today’s values, we lose the ability to learn and grow. The few people who really did stand out, no longer do. And the people who were otherwise fine, upstanding, life-changing people in every other way either look too perfect or are ignored because they are insufficiently modern in their ideals.
Suzanne Woods Fisher chose to address the topics she did in a beautiful way—by using what was authentic in a specific group and showing how that played out. And I thank her for it.
Should this series be read? Definitely.
Should it be finished? Absolutely.
When? Well, sooner than later, I always say. I look forward to what she delights us with next.
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