Author: Melanie Dobson

ISBN: 978-1-60936-685-8

How much do you know about what really happened on the Oregon Trail? Intrigued by that question, I picked up Melanie Dobson’s fascinating inspirational romance, Where the Trail Ends. I was not disappointed. This story is filled with rich historic detail seamlessly woven into the plot. Consequently, it kept me interested and entertained, all the while educating me about the early settlers traveling by wagon and on foot over 2,000 miles to Oregon Country.

For example, I hadn’t known about the conflict between the British and the Americans in the Pacific Northwest. Many of the British at Fort Vancouver, who were employed by the Hudson Bay Company, did not want Americans settling on what they considered to be their land. When the Americans occupied land for their homes and farms, it cut into the British fur trading business; thereby affecting their income. Nevertheless, Doctor McLoughlin took in the weary travelers who arrived severely malnourished, ill, and without money. He considered it his God-given duty to lend a helping hand, one human to another, regardless of nationality. This good man clothed, fed, and cared for the Americans who would have otherwise died. He generously gave them provisions so they could build homes, even giving them horses for their farms.

The plot centers around 18-year old Samantha traveling with her family and their wagon train from Ohio to Oregon. The many dangers and perils along the way are actual obstacles real historic people faced, as revealed in their diaries.

Like all good romances, the heroine and hero are kept apart by seemingly impossible circumstances. Part of the joy of reading a romantic novel is discovering their journey to be together. In Where the Trail Ends, readers will enjoy and be surprised by the twists and turns along the way. Personally, I would have enjoyed reading a denouement after the climax, but the story does come to a satisfactory ending.

Melanie Dobson, author of ten other novels and recipient of multiple book awards, did a meticulous and thorough job researching this period of history in order to write a tale that was accurate. I loved her Author’s Note at the end of the book that goes into a bit more historic fact.

I would have liked to see a map at the front of the book showing the trail the migrants traveled.

This is a good read for people who enjoy historic novels or inspirational romance, age 12 and up.

 Follow Here To Purchase Where the Trail Ends (American Tapestry)