Author Lauraine Snelling always has a way of taking me back in time as she does in A Breath of Hope, book 2 in the series Under Northern Skies. The emotions of the characters are so palpable, making the excitement of Nilda’s journey to America an exhilarating experience,while making the stressful situation with Signe and Rune a tense one. The plot itself is understandable but, I had a difficult time in the beginning getting the characters straight. So I guess it can be a standalone but, I wish I had read book 1 to avoid character confusion. This book is good for anyone who enjoys books about early migration, and slower pace books. I definitely can’t wait for book 3 and I am going to look for book 1 meanwhile;).
Nilda Carlson has been trying to save enough money to go to America for months, so when a letter from Einar and Gerd Strand arrives, offering to pay her ticket, she jumps at the chance. Her younger brother Ivar accompanies her, and they can’t wait to join their brother Rune and his family in the northern forests of Minnesota.
Signe and Rune Carlson are thrilled to welcome Nilda and Ivar to America, but life on the farm remains a struggle. Though Gerd has softened and grown to love the Carlson family, Einar is still harsh and unforgiving, obsessed solely with felling as many trees as possible. Rune is trying to build a new home for his wife and children, but Einar refuses to help and forbids anyone from the nearby community from stepping foot on his land. What dark secret must lie in his past to have caused him to isolate himself–and anyone living under his roof–in this way? When a tragedy lays the truth bare, the Carlsons and Strands will have to come together like never before and become a true family.