Author: Sandra Dallas
Published by: St. Martin's Press on Apr. 18, 2023
Genres: Historical Fiction
Format: ARC, Paperback
Source: St. Martin's Press
Book Rating: 9/10
Beautifully rendered, Where Coyotes Howl is a vivid and deeply affecting ode to the early twentieth century West, from master storyteller Sandra Dallas.
Except for the way they loved each other, they were just ordinary, everyday folks. Just ordinary.
1916. The two-street town of Wallace is not exactly what Ellen Webster had in mind when she accepted a teaching position in Wyoming, but within a year’s time she’s fallen in love—both with the High Plains and with a handsome cowboy named Charlie Bacon. Life is not easy in the flat, brown corner of the state where winter blizzards are unforgiving and the summer heat relentless. But Ellen and Charlie face it all together, their relationship growing stronger with each shared success, and each deeply felt tragedy.
Ellen finds purpose in her work as a rancher’s wife and in her bonds with other women settled on the prairie. Not all of them are so lucky as to have loving husbands, not all came to Wallace willingly, and not all of them can survive the cruel seasons. But they look out for each other, share their secrets, and help one another in times of need. And the needs are great and constant. The only city to speak of, Cheyenne, is miles away, making it akin to the Wild West in rural Wallace. In the end, it is not the trials Ellen and Charlie face together that make them remarkable, but their love for one another that endures through it all.
Moving, insightful, and incredibly atmospheric!
Where Coyotes Howl is a gritty, intriguing tale that sweeps you away to Wyoming during the early twentieth century and into the lives of the townsfolk of Wallace, especially schoolteacher Ellen Webster and cowboy Charlie Bacon, as they struggle to maintain their livelihoods, identities, sanity, health, and love for each other in harsh weather, barren plains, extreme loss, scarcity of money, and unimaginable tragedy.
The writing is eloquent and vivid. The characters are resilient, devoted, and strong. And the plot is a harrowing tale about life, loss, hope, family, friendship, grief, culture, community, hardship, poverty, trust, survival, and love.
Overall, Where Coyotes Howl is a beautifully written, exceptionally detailed, affecting novel by Dallas that I absolutely adored. It’s one of those novels that I went into thinking it would be good and finished it knowing it was great.
This novel is available April 18, 2023.
Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.
Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.