Claudia Cravens

Teoksen Lucky Red tekijä

1 Work 109 jäsentä 3 arvostelua

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Lucky Red (2023) 109 kappaletta

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fiction - orphaned young woman from Arkansas wanders into Dodge, finds work in a saloon/whorehouse, falls for a mysterious gunslinging woman (TW: snakebite death, sexual violence)

lots of interesting female relationships and strong characters, a very readable Western adventure.
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reader1009 | 2 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Jul 11, 2023 |
Thanks to Dial Press/Penguin Random House for the ARC.

80% of the way through my #ARC of LUCKY RED (Dial Press/Penguin Random House, June 20, 2023), I thought, if debut (?!?) author Claudia Cravens sticks this ending I’ll have no option but to rate this book five stars. The character development could be deeper but the novel is well nigh flawless. The pace and the turn of phrase are stunners. These similes, these metaphors, this just-exactly-enough description. And guess what. Cravens sticks the ending, shoves a claim flag into it and rides off into the sunset in a ten-gallon hat.

The main character, Bridget, having lost everything but a skinny mule and the ragged dress on her back, wanders into the middle of nowhere in 1877, casting herself upon a merciless wilderness. Bridget is a first-person narrator and a good one. I read another #ARC recently with the same plot, THE VASTER WILDS by Lauren Groff (Riverhead/Penguin Random House, September 12, 2023). Again, love it, except for the ending.

Bridget puts the work into sex work when she lands in a brothel in Dodge City with two madams where law enforcement gets freebies and looks the other way. Bridget makes friends with Caroline, who is educated and high-born. Bridget likes the brothel because for the first time in her life, she has money and enjoys creature comforts. As in A DANGEROUS BUSINESS by Jane Smiley (Knopf/Penguin Random House), December 6, 2022), the job is quite workwomanlike, platonic and perfunctory, except when it’s dangerous. However, most dangerous for Bridget is the women she becomes enamored with: first, Sallie the actress, then Spartan Lee, the infamous outlaw and bounty hunter. But no one really knows Bridget, whom Spartan nicknames “Red.” That steely, starving orphan is still underneath the lace and satin and capable of anything.

Bridget never imagines that a terrible betrayal and brutal crimes might drive her and other members of her found family to dress like men and become desperadoes on the Kansas plains. -from my blog
… (lisätietoja)
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jillrhudy | 2 muuta kirja-arvostelua | May 17, 2023 |
I loved the idea of seeing the West through a different perspective than what is traditionally portrayed. Having been a big fan of westerns, such as Bonanza, I was eager to see what modern twist could be spun, especially from a woman’s perspective. With that being said this book missed the mark for me.

This book is described as having such strong female leads but for me they felt overly forced. There was so much of the book that focused on the monotony of Bridget’s new life turning tricks and continually getting chastised for her juvenile like behavior instead of, “…her true calling as a revenge-seeking gunslinger.”

With that being said, just because this book was not for me, I do think there are many who would enjoy reading this story because of a female being the focal point. Keep in mind it is about a brothel, there is a lot of turning tricks, and the climax of the final act of the book is a short, fast paced ride.
… (lisätietoja)
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Blazingfire88 | 2 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Apr 29, 2023 |



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