Item description for First Dawn (Freedom's Path Series #1) by Judith Miller...
Overview First Dawn
Author: Judith Miller Edition: Paperback Price: 12.99 Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.38 Number of Pages: 384 Series: Freedom's Path Publication Date: Jul. 05
From the coauthor of the BELLS OF LOWELL and LIGHTS OF LOWELL series with Tracie Peterson
Lured by the promise of true freedom, a thriving community, and land to call their own, sharecroppers Ezekiel Harban and his three daughters set off for Nicodemus, Kansas. When their wagon train arrives, they are shocked at what they find, and many give up and head back home. But Ezekiel's family is determined to build a new life in spite of the disappointments.
Dr. Samuel Boyle and his family also are drawn by the wonderful potential of the Kansas frontier. When the Boyles settle in nearby Hill City, the struggling people of Nicodemus get word of a doctor in the neighboring community and seek his help.
As the lives of the Harban and Boyle families intersect, the two communities begin an enduring bond that seeks to bring
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Studio: Bethany House Publishers
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.2" Width: 5.5" Height: 1.2" Weight: 0.765 lbs.
Release Date Jul 31, 2005
Publisher BETHANY HOUSE PUBLISHERS #7
Series Freedoms Path
ISBN 0764229974 ISBN13 9780764229978
Reviews - What do customers think about First Dawn (Freedom's Path Series #1)?
The Town - Nicodemus, KS Feb 25, 2007
There really IS a town called Nicodemus in Kansas, and Judith chose her solo series to begin that town's life and her people. The Haban family were some of the "Coloreds" who believed the lies of an infamous Mr. Hill and headed for their first taste of actually owning land. The group of freed slaves had been told the town already existed. It did not. They faced incredible hardships staying alive, let alone trying to start a town.
Just a ways up the road, the town of Hill City was being settled by "White Folks" who had been lied to by the same Mr. Hill. A kind doctor brought his frail wife and family to this town to try to make a difference, he just thought there was more town and progress than actually existed.
Based upon the location of the two towns and the interaction of the inhabitants of each, many side stories are starting to come to life. Jarena endears herself to the reader as does Dr. Boyle. Hardships cause real people to emerge from the shallowness of their former life. Some for better, many for worse.
I finished book one yesterday and bought book 2 today. Thank you Judith.
Very Enjoyable Novel Sep 3, 2006
It was well written, the story flowed extremely well, and the historical aspects of the novel were interesting. I definitely recommend this author that is now writing her own novels.
Great historical Jul 11, 2006
This is the first book in Judith Miller's Fredom Path series, set in Kansas, July 1877. After the Civil War ended, life was hard for the freed slaves. When William R. Hill, a white land purveyor, tells the members of the First Baptist Church about the wonders of the great Solomon Valley, the former slaves are excited at the prospects of being landowners. They purschase their land, sight unseen, load up what they can take with them, and set out for Nicodemus Kanss. Jarena Harban never believed the glowing description of the land given by Mr. Hill, but her father, Ezekiel, longs to be a landowner. Since her mother died, Jarena has helped raise her twin sisters, Grace and Truth. She can't refuse to go with them. Thomas Grayson, a man with a price on ihs head is traveling with the group, and Jarena is attracted to him, although her heart belongs to the man she left behind. When they reach Nicodemus, the weary travelers are shocked to find no town, no trees, no water. Nothing but scrubby brush, dry buffalo grass, miles of flat prairie, and winter is coming on. Dr. Samuel Bolyle, has never liked living in Kentucky. A transported northerner, he is disgusted by the way some of the whites treat their sharecroppers. He too falls for Mr. Hill's description and uproots his family, moving them to Hill City, which is close to Nicodemus, but reserved for whites. He finds a tiny ramshackled town and house waiting for them, not at all what he was led to expect. First Dawn is the story of a desperate group of people and their trust in a merciful God. I truly enjoyed this story of the Harban and Boyle families. Looking for more from this talented writer.
A Remarkable Well-Told Story Jul 5, 2006
Through FIRST DAWN, you will gain a hint at what it was like to settle the plains of Kansas. The story has two predominate threads: you learn about the African American family Ezekiel Harban who travel to Nicodemus, Kansas full of hope and expectation. These former slaves have purchased land to begin a new life. They arrive and learn their expectations have been too high because there is nothing there. They are forced to rebuild their lives in a harsh situation.
The second main story centers on Dr. Samuel Boyle who has uprooted his family from a comfortable life in Kentucky and moved them to the sister town of Hill City, Kansas. Dr. Boyle and his family become connected to the Harban family in this well-drawn historical.
I fell in love with the characters and the historical setting because of the rich storytelling from Judith Miller. I highly recommend this first book in the Freedom's Path series.
If you like pablum, you'll love this book Jun 27, 2006
If you like good writing, fully-drawn characters, nuanced story-telling, you won't like this book. Miller takes a premise that has the potential for being compelling and reduces it to platitudes. We never really learn how the pioneers in Nicodemus survived the winter, how the harshness and stress affected the families and communities. Dr. Boyle's bratty daughter and wastrel son are transformed into compassionate human beings simply by turning the page from one chapter to the next. I literally looked back to see if my book was missing a chapter! Where did these new personas come from? The air of Kansas? This book is too self-righteous for it's own good. The writing is simplistic at best. If you like GOOD books, don't bother with this one.