Never Done

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 31 Jul 2017

Member Reviews

What an unusual book. I didn't know quite what to make of it. The descriptions of a life so different from anything we know or can really comprehend. The relationships so alien to that in most of our experiences. I can't say I really enjoyed the read but it was interesting.
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This story is based on the author's Great-grandmother which really adds to the historical value of this novel. Clara and Geneva are cousins who have lived a well to do life Philadelphia in the 1880's when Clara's father decides to move the family to Colorado. As Clara 14, adjusts to a new way of life on the Colorado frontier her father decides to marry her cousin Geneva, a decision that turns Clara's life upside down. Angered and confused by her father's actions Clara decides to forge a life of her own by marrying her father's cattle foreman a decision that brings her the joy of independence she yearned for but ultimately causes her heartache because of her...

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This book was just amazing! What I really loved about this book is that it's based on the diary of the author's great grandmother. You can't get any more authentic than that! What a real coming of age story. Once again I really feel like I am reading a historical account of an old time family, like maybe old time relatives that had passed on before I was born. Clara and Geneva are bored young teens with Clara at 14 and Geneva at 16. Clara looks up to and idolizes Geneva until Geneva marries her widowed papa. Having a mother in law just two years older than you makes for some very tough going times. Geneva settles into the good life with domestic help for her household and...

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Clara, a girl growing up in the late 1800s  and this her story.

From the age of 14  to her womanhood this amazing story tells the harshness of her life, growing up and all her struggles.

I love Historical fiction and this is a satisfying read. It is easy to fall in with the descriptive and atmospheric wiing of the author.

I would recommend this as a book club read, as many of Clara's life story is relevant in todays women.
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I received a ARC via Netgalley. I had not heard of this author before, and was interested to learn that the genesis of this novel was a comment in the memoirs of her great grandmother.

it took me a while to 'like' Clara, and her rival Geneva's character is a bit underdone, so it's hard to get a sense of the competition between the two women. To my mind it is Clara's father's selfishness and insensitivity that propels the upsets in his daughter's life. However he does eventually set her up in business and this is the turning point for her family, and also when the novel really began to engage me.

I found the historical detail regarding women's life...

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hat an amazing book. It just kind of jumped in so if you hadn't read the synopsis, it could be a bit confusing. It was an incredible story of Clara, a girl growing up in the late 1800s and everything she went through. From her father marrying her 16 year old cousin, illness and life as a cowboy's wife... this was an incredible story that left me wanting more. Seriously, the book ended and I was sad it was over, it ends rather abruptly but more than that, I really grew fond of Clara and was not ready to leave her.
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“Never Done” by Grace Dehlinger, a book about settling in Colorado during westward expansion. Albert Willin brought his wife and daughters to the San Luis Valley to start a cattle ranch and has prospered well. The family lives in a beautiful home on the prairie. After the death of his wife and sons, Albert marries his first cousin, sixteen-year-old Geneva, the best friend of his daughter, Clara. The story centers on his daughter Clara, who at the beginning of the book is a spunky fourteen-year-old, becomes a young woman, married to a cow-puncher, and living in a shack, finds life harder than she ever imagined. Following her husband Vincent from job to job and taking her children with...

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This was an enjoyable read, but I must admit, I don't think I have read a book in which so much tragedy happens to one person. I was appalled that her Father didn't lift a hand to help Clara in some way but continually boasted about his wealth and the property he was amassing. Clara was such a strong character, only once breaking, but immediately picked herself up and fought back for the sake of her children.
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