These Is My Words: The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine, 1881-1901 Arizona Territories

A friend of mine lent me this book by Nancy E. Turner. She was worried that I would not want to stick with it since it is not on the best sellers’ list, but it has won my heart.

This book is inspired by the memoirs of one of Turner’s ancestors who settled the Arizona Territory. She takes her readers along with teenage Sarah as she watches her brother and father die and lives through numerous attacks by Indians. She rescues her soon-to-be sister-in-law from rapists. She outshoots most of the men on the wagon train with which she travels. Sarah faces rattlesnakes and murderers. And she survives.

I enjoyed watching Sarah Prine grow up. I knew she loved Jack Elliot long before she did, and I was sad when she married Jimmy Reed instead. I cried with her when Jimmy’s last words were that he loved Ruthanne-not his wife. I cried again when she knew the sweetness of being loved back.

Although young women today do not have to fight Indians or build houses, a lot of the struggles that Sarah went through are similar to today’s struggles. She wants to be married and to be loved. She is tired when she is taking care of the house and her babies. Her husband travels and she is lonely.

I liked this book so much that I ordered one and had it sent to my daughter. She also had a bad first marriage. I think the book will give her hope. Every woman deserves her Captain Jack Elliot. Some of us were lucky enough to find them the first time around. Some of us need help in knowing what to look for.

Thank you, Nancy Turner, for a fine book.

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