I am enjoying reading books that take place in the American West. I thank TLC Book Tours for sending me a copy of Gold Digger by Rebecca Rosenberg at no charge for my honest review.
About Gold Digger:
One look at Baby Doe and you know she was meant to be a legend! She was just twenty years old when she came to Colorado to work a gold mine with her new husband. Little did she expect that she’d be abandoned and pregnant and left to manage the gold mine alone. But that didn’t stop her! She moved to Leadville and fell in love with a married prospector, twice her age. Horace Tabor struck the biggest silver vein in history, divorced his wife and married Baby Doe. Though his new wife was known for her beauty, her fashion, and even her philanthropy, she was never welcomed in polite society. Discover how the Tabors navigated the worlds of wealth, power, politics, and scandal in the wild days of western mining.
About the Author:
California native Rebecca Rosenberg lives on a lavender farm with her family in Sonoma, the Valley of the Moon, where she and her husband founded the largest lavender product company in America. A long-time student of Jack London’s work and an avid fan of his daring wife, Charmian, Rosenberg is a graduate of the Stanford Writing Certificate Program. Her books include: GOLD DIGGER, the Remarkable Baby Doe Tabor, The Secret Life of Mrs. London, Lavender Fields of America, and the Champagne Widows series
I have a soft spot for books that are based on real people. It always fascinates me to learn about new people from history. Elizabeth Doe was a beauty in her day. The kind of beautiful that would stop men in their tracks. Her mother told her that her beauty would serve the family well – and it did when a fire destroyed her father’s store and she needed to marry well to help. That marriage took her away from her family to gold mining country in Colorado where she didn’t quite find the life she was expecting.
Her husband turns out to be a disappointment but Elizabeth buckles down and works hardin her father in law’s mine. Despite her willingness to work hard, her marriage does not survive. She soon finds herself pregnant and running a mine without help. This doesn’t stop her from trying to erm, enhance her station. She catches the eye of Horace Tabor – the richest man around – and soon he divorces his wife and marries Elizabeth, known by her nickname of Baby Doe.
Baby Doe’s life gets a lot easier but she is not accepted by the society folk in town despite her attempts to dress in the finest clothes and her donations to charity. Her rise to riches is not forever as a financial crisis has Horace losing just about everything. Baby Doe ends up living in a shack by his last mine, trying to eek out a living with her two daughters.
This was a page turner of a book. This was an exciting time in the history of the West and many people went from poor to rich to poor again in very short order. The characters were so unique and compelling. Knowing that so many of them were based on real people made the story all the more fascinating. The descriptions of the growing towns and the bustling silver mines were vivid and really drew me in. The conversations felt real and the emotions expressed by the characters were natural.
I read the book in one sitting and was sorry it was over. The ending was both sad and hopeful. I was inspired to hit the wiki to learn more about Elizabeth and found out a little more of her life past the ending of the book. I’m glad I read this and will look forward to more from the author.