Captive Bride
by Marjorie J. Hersom
ReadersMagnet, LLC

"For the first time since Mazarro’s death, she felt a calmness envelope her. With Mazarro, she was always on pins and needles waiting for the next assault."

Maria is determined to control her own destiny after she is kidnapped from Guam and taken to the Bonin Islands in 1843. This engaging work of historical fiction brings Maria to life in all her traumatized, defiant glory as she endures the cruelty of the man who stole her and then eventually finds love with a man who cares deeply for her.

Hersom has the heart of a storyteller and captivates the reader with Maria’s story of survival and passion in a beautiful island setting. The culture of the Bonin people is lovingly described with details about customs and traditions of island life and seafaring people. These touches of island life like using a conch shell to announce a wedding or predicting a typhoon by reading the sea create a strong sense of place and time for the story of Maria’s life. The use of Creole as the language of some of the Bonin Islanders establishes Maria as an outsider whose family and home is lost to her. Hersom’s use of dialect gives voice to the characters who become Maria’s family as they help acclimate her to life in her new home. The rhythm of the island is reflected in the voices of the women who care for Maria.

This is not only the story of an island—though, in Hersom’s capable hands, the island lives and breathes. This is also a thrilling romance as Maria finds love after suffering trauma and brutality. The story soars as Maria opens her heart to Nathaniel, one of the original settlers to the island. Hersom writes with such care and celebration for Maria and Nathaniel. Perhaps this is because she is a real-life descendant of their love story and has grown up hearing these stories and adventures.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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