AUTHOR: Suzanne Desrochers
GENRE: Historical Fiction
SETTING(S) : 17th Century, AD, Paris, France and Ville-Marie, Canada
SUBJECT: Adult, History, Romances (Fiction), Coming of Age, Canada Lit & Native Americans
MAIN CHARACTERS: Laure Beausejour, Madeleine and Deskaheh
SUMMARY: In the novel Bride of New France by Suzanne Desrochers, a young woman journeys from France in 1669 to the untamed wilderness of North America. Though Laure Beausejour had envisioned a life of privilege in Paris, she instead is married to a French soldier living in Canada. Though the weather there is brutal and her husband is cruel, Laure finds some joy in her new home of Ville-Marie in the arms of Deskaheh. Because Deskaheh is an Iroquois and Laure is a married woman, their romance must remain a secret. For Laure, life in Canada offers new independence and also poses many dangers.
Via: Books & Authors
Bride of New France explores the challenges of coming into womanhood in a brutal time and place. From the moment she arrives in Ville-Marie (Montreal), Laure is expected to marry and produce children with a French soldier who can himself barely survive the harsh conditions of his forest cabin. But Laure finds, through her clandestine relationship with Deskaheh, an allied Iroquois, a sense of the possibilities in this New World. What happens to a woman who attempts to make her own life choices in such authoritative times?
Via: Good Reads
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Bride of New France brings into light the perhaps known or unknown history of Canada. 17th Century France and Canada are both cruel and uplifting. Paris is a bustling yet dirty city whereas Canada is an untouched land filled with its harsh winters, indian raids and other cruelties. Laure finds herself in Canada as a replacement for one of the girls who dies in a hospital in France.
Upon arriving in Canada she finds herself married to not a soldier but an untamed beast of a man who takes young natives as his mistress(es). This tale was sometime unnerving to read because of what Laure had to suffer in the hands of men. Laure’s coming of age story is unfulfilled until the end of the book at its climatic end.
At first I did not like Laure as a character because she sometimes was a little ruthless and selfish. As she learned to deal with what life threw at her with her own personal strenghths and weaknesses she became more of a surviver. Yes I may not liked some of her decision but towards the end of the book I became more compassionate towards her and what others like her might have had to do in order to survive.
It is a story that I would love to read more especially if it was written through the eyes of Laure’s daughter. But unfortunately for the “Bride of New France” it was not written as a series. If you like historical fiction and romance fiction I highly recommend this book. If you like this book you would also enjoy authors such as Julie Klassen, Carolyn Meyer and Kate Alcott.