Thursday, October 13, 2016

The Governess by Kristen McKendry {Blog Tour Review and Giveaway}

The Governess by Kristen McKendry
Paperback214 pages
Published October 10th 2016 by Covenant Communications
For Kate Porter in 1880s Canada, working as a governess is simply a means to an end, and she aspires to a high-society future that will lift her out of her middle-class existence. When she accepts a new position as tutor to Alonzo Colaco's children, she sees it as a step in the direction of her dreams. She eagerly envisions a grand house awaiting her...but when her new employer meets her at the train station driving a gaily painted gypsy wagon, Kate suspects her new job will not be all she anticipated.

Kate finds herself living in the woods in a refitted train car as she teaches the charming children of Alonzo, a tinker by trade. After trying in vain to secure another job, Kate is left with little choice. She must simply bide her time until a better position comes along. Soon, however, she abandons her preconceptions along with her bustle in favor of the joys of a simple life---and the possibility of true love. But when opportunity knocks, will Kate really be ready to walk away from all she has come to care about to pursue her high-society dreams?
My Review: 5 Stars
I know all about hopes and dreams and the way a person has to adapt to what life dishes out--it's not always fun. Kate, through no fault of her own, finds herself dependent on a condescending cousin when her parents both die. I love that she decides to support herself after awhile and goes about doing so in a very determined manner. Although she's always lived on the borders of society, she tries very hard to mold herself into a proper woman. I found it interesting that so often, people do the same thing today. Sometimes, it's the idea of what life should be that drives us to blend in and conform to the constraints of society. After losing yet another job, fate steps in and a job lands in her lap. But the job isn't at all what Kate wants or was expecting and she's left with a choice--adjust her expectations or move on and find a new job.
I love the age-old formulas of certain genres, but when an author steps outside of the box and throws in twists or situations that weren't the "norm" for the time, I love it even more. This is a fantastic premise with very inspiring and powerful characters. Alonzo is a great parent and a very patient man, doing his best, but he's definitely not your typical high-society gentleman. His two children are adorable and I just wanted to squeeze them. I enjoyed experiencing the heavy weight that Kate feels while struggling to make her choice and forge her path in life. This story is full of the unexpected and I loved every minute!
This is a great read for those who enjoy the Victorian time period with an unconventional story set in Canada.
Content: mild romance. Clean!
*I received a complimentary copy from Covenant Communications. This in no way influenced my review. All opinions expressed are completely my own.*
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About the Author:

Kristen McKendry began writing in her teens and her work has been published in Canada and the U.S. She holds a Bachelors Degree in Linguistics from Brigham Young University and has always been a voracious reader.

Kristen has a strong interest in urban agriculture, sustainable living, environmental issues, and the local foods movement. She incorporates these themes in her writing, and she also lets her Mormon background flavour her work to make her culture more accessible to mainstream readers. She enjoys playing the bagpipes and banjo, learning obscure languages, growing wheat in the backyard, and making cheese. Raised in Utah, she now resides with her family in Canada. She's also the proud grandmother of the world's cutest kids, Rowyn and Eòghann.

Kristen won the 2012 Mississauga Arts Council MARTY Award for Established Literary Arts, and her book Garden Plot was nominated for the 2011 Whitney Award for excellence in LDS fiction. 


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