Tracie Peterson’s “In Places Golden”

I was attracted to this surprising story by my interest in the setting. In the past, I have read some interesting books set in and around San Francisco. This story opens with a group of women on a train trip. Headed for San Francisco, each has a reason for undertaking such an unusual journey. Even though they have a place to stay once they arrive, they must make plans to seek jobs. Set in 1905, the story’s set-up is intriguing, while still being fairly fanciful. It’s apparent that the women haven’t known each other long, but have thrown their lots together. In the first chapter, one of the characters says, “…fate has brought us together,” which I found somewhat unusual for a Christian imprint, no?

I was also a little surprised to encounter the names Camri and Kenzie in that time period. Also surprised to read a statement encouraging and espousing women having careers while having children. It was a VERY rare woman who did this in that day. Even on into the 1960s, schoolteachers, for example, left the teaching field when they had their own children.

Besides the fact that the book gives tacit approval to putting career over raising one’s own children, it’s just plain too preposterous to blithely include that detail with no over-arching reason for it.

Also odd, is that the house they go stay in is richly appointed. Leather armchairs, a piano, and much more adorn the interior of this well-off domain. (The home belongs to Camri’s missing brother.) Since cash is scarce (the journey took most of the resources she had) and the situation with her brother missing is dire, it seems that selling some of the contents of the house would allow for time to locate brother or solve the mystery. But no, the three ladies stick to their plan to go on a job hunt. Snicker.

The first book in a series, I would predict that Kenzie and Judith will have their own stories releasing in the next couple of years. If you like this one, those are sure to be more of the same.

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