Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Keeper's Gift by Richard Bowers

In the early 20th century, Uley Bauer is a young man of great promise, but luck works against him, and he soon finds himself embarking on a journey, driven by wanderlust and the need to find himself.  Drawn to California, along with his friend, Russell, they set off on a journey towards their separate destinies.

Uley's travels takes him to small towns and busy mining camps. Along the way, they gather friends and make enemies. They meet ruthless enemies who would steal the clothes off their backs and meet colorful characters who will forever change their lives. In the rough and tumble world of California in the early 20th century, Uley is tested, and through trial and error, he forges a new life, enters manhood, and discovers himself.

The Keeper’s Gift is a sweeping novel of 458 pages. Richard Bowers weaves true stories of his home town in Sedalia Missouri with actual California history to recount this epic tale. The novel is written in first person narrative in Uley’s own voice and is pleasing and easy to follow.  I did encounter some spelling/typos in the book, but they were easily overlooked in order to focus on the richness of the story.  The author writes in great detail, painting colorful images and showing readers the era with vivid descriptions. It is a “journey” and "character" driven novel, deep with meaning, as the main character travels from one locale to another to his destination. If you like adventure stories of this era , then this novel is sure to please.