I have less than fifty pages left to read of Free Land. There have been parts that were so interesting I stayed up too late to read them, but most of the book hasn't drawn my interest. Maybe it's because the story is a bit familiar in spots--not unlike Rose's mother's stories. Maybe it could be the lack of optimism in the main characters or how the Beaton's marriage has been adversely affected by trying to make it on their own in a somewhat unsettled territory.
The lengthy descriptions which I enjoyed reading in the Anne of Green Gables books by Lucy Maud Montgomery, bore me to death in Free Land. I can't exactly pinpoint why. It certainly doesn't seem to make sense; unless I chalk it up to the fact that Montgomery was describing the beauty of the Canadian countryside, whereas Lane is typically describing the difficulties the Beatons experience in living and farming under harsh conditions--raging blizzards, scorching heat, droughts.
But still, I must read it to the end so that I can figure out what happens.
I wonder too, if Laura Ingalls Wilder had written her books for an adult market instead of for children--would I enjoy them as much as I do? It truly seems that the one major element missing between Rose's book and her mother's is that undying optimism which the young narrator of the Little House books portrays through words and actions.
Last night I ordered Let the Hurricane Roar from a local library. I'm curious to see how Rose portrays this story which is supposedly based upon the life of Charles and Caroline Ingalls. I believe I can get a more complete picture of Rose as a writer if I read as many of her books as I can find.
I love this kind of research!