- Paperback: 304 pages
- Publisher: B&H Books (January 1, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 080544534X
- ASIN: B002YNS1WK
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 43 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,891,023 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Wind Dancer Paperback – Bargain Price, January 1, 2009
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Jamie Carie created characters that make for entertaining reading and a story that keeps you turning pages. Isabelle can match the ability of most men and is more at home in the timber hunting than in the kitchen cooking the kill. Just as Isabelle is not the typical woman, Julian, her younger brother, is not the typical young man. He enjoys writing poetry over hunting and music over physical labor. Then there is Samuel; strong, unbridled and who most Indians would love to scalp.
Isabelle and Julian are asked to travel to another town for their pastor. They set off, unaware that this trip will forever alter their lives. Along the path Isabelle and Julian meet an American spy, Samuel Holt. The three travel together and their lives remain intertwined forevermore. Their journey turns dangerous, even deadly when they encounter Indians who hold them captive.
Through the dangers, uncertainty and hopelessness of the situation, Isabelle also faces spiritual battles that eventually strengthen her and bring her peace. All the while she clings to the hope of a relationship with Samuel Holt. I enjoyed the spiritual element in Isabelle's life. As a result of the trials and major life changing situations throughout the book, she developed a deeper relationship with her Lord and found her identity in Him.
Two nitpicks for Wind Dancer: the graphic violence in a few scenes and a couple of far-fetched dreams. First, I was taken aback by the detailed battle scenes. I was caught up in the developing love story and caught off guard when I got to violent scenes. The overall story would not be compromised with a more general, non-descript approach to the battles and aftermath.
Second, Samuel has dreams of the future and what America will be like once a free country. What Carie describes in one dream is a country full of big cities with sky scrapers. In another dream you can only assume Samuel is envisioning the Statue of Liberty. It seems unlikely a person in that era could imagine such a time as this and such a gift as Lady Liberty. These passages came across as cheesy.
Wind Dancer is a good read. For those who enjoy romance with flare, read Wind Dancer for the love story. For those who like war stories from another era, read Wind Dancer for the history. For those who desire lots of action, Wind Dancer is a page turner.
When the town priest needs someone to retrieve books from the town of Kaskaskia, he knows exactly who to ask. Young and beautiful Isabelle Renoir, who shows up to church in wild red dresses and rivals the boys with her hunting skills, is perfect for the task. Her mother reluctantly agrees to let Isabelle make the trip, hoping it will somehow calm her restless spirit. Accompanied by her brother, Julian, and an Indian Scout named Quiet Fox, Isabelle embarks on the journey, promising to be back in a few weeks. She knows, without anyone saying it, that she is expected to look out for her brother, whose quiet ways are more prone to music and poetry than outdoor adventures.
As the trio travels to Kaskaskia, they are unaware that someone else is heading in the same direction. American spy Samuel Holt is on a mission to scout the area before troops come to free the town from British rule. Born into a wealthy family, Samuel is far more satisfied with his rough and rugged military life than running a plantation. He crosses paths with the Kaskaskia-bound trio and agrees to travel with them, intrigued by Isabelle, so different from any woman he's ever known.
By morning, Quiet Fox has disappeared, leaving Isabelle, Julian and Samuel to go forth without him. They reach the village, and Isabelle learns Samuel's true identity as soldiers come and a peaceful transition takes place from British to American rule. As the three head back, books in tow, they stop for the night at a family's cabin. And here the trouble begins. The evening erupts in a bloody and violent Indian attack for which no one is prepared. As Isabelle stares into the wild-eyed, painted face of her attacker, she realizes it is none other than Quiet Fox. It is her last thought before his war club comes down upon her head.
The horrific imagery of the attack contrasts dramatically with Isabelle's spiritual afterlife experience.
The music beckoned her spirit, reaching down and touching guarded chords inside her, opening her whole being like a key to someplace she hadn't known was locked. Stringed lutes and violins joined in, filling empty spaces in her body. Then the gentle strum of harp strings joined with angelic voices. They sang in a language she had never heard and yet was familiar, as if she could understand if she only listened long enough. The voices rose in crescendo with an aching sweetness, until her chest began to heave with pent-up sobs of joy.
Full of wonder. Full of love.
But Heaven is not ready for her yet. Isabelle wakens to find that the Indians killed several members of the family and captured Samuel and Julian. Her quest to find them results in her own capture, after which she is forced to witness the horrific killing of her beloved brother. Together in captivity, she and Samuel find their passion for each other growing stronger as they hold fast to their faith and struggle to return to freedom.
Jamie Carie has once again seamlessly woven her in-depth research into an exciting and passionate page-turner. Her heroine's character reminds me of a wild mustang running full gallop across the mesa, incredibly beautiful and too magnificent to tame. If you like plenty of action and emotion packaged into a historical romance, then WIND DANCER fits the bill.
--- Reviewed by Susan Miura
For my fellow romance fans who share my ignorance about christian fiction, I need to state up front that this book is `clean,' meaning there is no hot and heavy action. It reminds me of a well-written Jane Austen novel, with a heavy dose of spirituality mixed in.
I had a hard time believing that anyone like Isabelle existed during this time and place. It's not that I didn't appreciate her wild child ways, but she seemed almost unbalanced in her reasoning for someone born in such dangerous times. Would a frontier mother really let her virginal 19 year-old daughter take a month-long journey with an unknown Indian guide and her younger brother? The atrocities that befall them are hardly surprising, and frankly, it's amazing to me that Isabelle gets out of this unscathed.
I think my only criticism is with the one-sided portrayal of the Native Indians as the villains. The story lacked balance because all of the settlers were good-hearted people, and the Indians were murdering fiends. Good and evil exists in all peoples, and I wish we'd seen more to represent that balance on both sides.