Journal

The Memory Weaver by Jane Kirkpatrick

Eliza Spalding Warren was just a child when she was taken hostage by the Cayuse Indians during a massacre in 1847. Now the young mother of two children, Eliza faces a different kind of dislocation; her impulsive husband wants them to make a new start in another territory, which will mean leaving her beloved home and her departed mother’s grave–and returning to the land of her captivity. Eliza longs to know how her mother, an early missionary to the Nez Perce Indians, dealt with the challenges of life with a sometimes difficult husband and with her daughter’s captivity.

When Eliza is finally given her mother’s diary, she is stunned to find that her own memories are not necessarily the whole story of what happened. Can she lay the dark past to rest and move on? Or will her childhood memories always hold her hostage?

Based on true events, The Memory Weaver is New York Times bestselling author Jane Kirkpatrick’s latest literary journey into the past, where threads of western landscapes, family, and faith weave a tapestry of hope inside every pioneering woman’s heart. Readers will find themselves swept up in this emotional story of the memories that entangle us and the healing that awaits us when we bravely unravel the threads of the past.

**I received a copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.**

There are some books that touch your heart and you can’t help but feel grateful for the oppurtunity to read them. Such was the case with The Memory Weaver by Jane Kirkpatrick.

In many ways, I found this book a difficult one to read. The story felt disjointed as it should, since I think it was meant to capture the way a traumatic experience shaped one girl’s life. Events would trigger flashbacks where Eliza, the main character and narrator of the story, would be transported back to a time where she was held hostage with others by Native Americans and at 10-years of age, being the only one who spoke both languages, forced to translate. This one moment colors most of the way that she looks at her life.

This poignant story is told quite artfully. The language is eloquent and I truly felt I was listening to Eliza Spalding Warren tell her life story how she knew it to be–whether it was the way it happened or not. By the end of the book, I found myself examining my own life and while I don’t have near the dark memory that she had, I wondered about the way my own memories have changed over time. Either way, this book offered up something wonderful to think about.

This was not a book to read for fun. It is a thought-provoking novel. It’s one that has a somber tone through it–but there are certainly threads of joy, forgiveness, love and hope. I found the book hard to start reading after having put it down, but after a bit, I was immersed in the story and found it even more difficult to put down. This is a book that I think has a strong message and theme to it and is definitely worth picking up.

“The past is but a puzzle with pieces missing and misplaced.”

-The Memory Weaver

About the Author:
Jane is internationally recognized for her lively presentations and well-researched stories that encourage and inspire.  Her works have appeared in more than 50 publications including  Decision, Private Pilot and Daily Guideposts.  Jane is the author of over 25 books including historical novels. Many of her titles are based on the lives of real people or incidents set authentically in the American West.  Her first novel, A Sweetness to the Soul, won the coveted Wrangler Award from the Western Heritage Center.  Her works have been finalists for the Christy, Spur, Oregon Book Award, WILLA Literary Award and Reader’s Choice awards.  Several of her titles have been Book of the Month and Literary Guild selections.

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