In 1937 Kentucky a group of women find more than they bargained for when volunteering to work for the local library. They work hard to bring books on horseback to the most remote families, and often in treacherous conditions. There are many skeptics amongst the men in the community who believe the library is diluting the word of the bible, or bringing unwanted ideas to their women.
Alice, an English woman who moved to Kentucky to live with her new husband is one of the volunteers. She pushes her boundaries with this new manual work in and finds out more than she could have expected about herself, and her new husband. Friendships are made, along with enemies, and Alice finds herself at the centre of dramatic events.
We meet those who embrace the new library easily, those who rely on it as a lifeline to the outside world, and those who are reluctant readers. Some reject the library outright and will not allow new books into their homes.
Jojo Moyes brings the landscape to life with her descriptions, it is easy to see how this book will be made into a film. The women are strong and determined, with their friendships, marriages, and relationships bringing added emotion to the book. It is easy to enjoy this historical fiction novel with a huge dose of feminism, friendship and loyalty based on a true story.
The introduction to my copy of the book had a letter from Jojo Moyes explaining the true stories that inspired her work of fiction. The Horseback Librarians of Kentucky were a group of women working to get books to remote families after the Great Depression. These women showed a great sense of purpose and strength in a time when educated women were looked at suspiciously.
Buy your copy here: Amazon.co.uk
I received my copy of the book from the publisher.
Read my review for other books by Jojo Moyes here: Books by Jojo Moyes