The Arrival by N. E. Brown and S. L. Jenkins
N. E. Brown
The Arrival is an exalted, heart-stirring work of fiction. It starts as Anna struggles to reconcile a tragic past and an uncertain future in Galveston, Texas.
This is a must read historical fiction packed with dark suspense, romance and tragedy. After arriving in Galveston, Texas, from England, at the turn of the century, a young courageous fifteen year-old girl old, Catherine Eastman must face a new life in an orphanage after her mother is murdered by a drifter shortly after they arrive.
The drifter, David Brooks, has his own dark past and a passion for prostitutes and beautiful women and often leaves them dead. A young man, ten years older than Catherine, gets permission to marry her and take her from the orphanage on her sixteenth birthday. Love and passion ignite as the two fall in love. Brooks’ next conquest is Catherine, and after he abducts and violates her, he is caught and sent to a prison farm.
All of this is happening while the city of Galveston is blithely unaware of the devastation that waits in the near future. By 1900, a monstrous hurricane is brewing in the gulf that will kill thousands and threaten to wipe the city off the map forever.
Review by M:
Galveston: 1900: Indignities, Book One: The Arrival, by N.E. Brown, and S. L. Jenkins, is an exalted, heart-stirring work of fiction. It starts as Anna struggles to reconcile a tragic past and an uncertain future in Galveston, Texas. She has lost her husband, son, and daughter. She decides it is time to leave Sandgate, England with her oldest daughter, Catherine.
Anne attempts to start a new job at the Grand Opera house — with disastrous consequences. The scheming begins after David Brooks gets her the job, and decides he has a ruse of his own. He is absolutely loathsome, and will stop at nothing to get what he wants.
However, Anne and Catherine are finding a sweet new happiness together, in their new life. The story develops into a tale of lasting friendship, pure love, betrayal, unending suspense, and tragedy.
While there are so many ways I could praise this novel, character development has to be one of the strongest. The central characters are all intricately fascinating. Catherine, in particular, is a most interesting figure; she’s uniquely creative, empowered, and the one with the most integrity. Although it is a bit of a slow start, the story is distinctly imagined, thoroughly researched and a brilliantly plotted novel.
I will definitely read the next book in this series.
Review by Patricia La Vigne:
In Book 4 of her series, Galveston: 1900 Indignities, Nancy Brown continues the story of Dr. Catherine Merit as she matures into a young woman, capable of facing challenges she never dreamed would happen to her. Catherine set up her medical practice in Rosenberg, Texas at the same time providing a home for her family.
After fatally shooting Joe Brady as he attempted to rape her, Catherine finds comfort in Dr. Samuel Allen, a colleague with whom she worked at Houston General Hospital. They became engaged, but Catherine learns of his infidelity. Although she can no longer accept him as a future husband, they do remain friends. Catherine concentrates on being a good mother and at the same time, developing her medical practice in Rosenberg.
Catherine’s beauty and gracious nature do not escape the thoughts of men she meets, including Michael Atwood. Michael, a wealthy and assertive citizen of Rosenberg, makes his feelings known to Catherine and proposes to her.
As she gradually begins to learn more about him, she becomes less enchanted with his attentiveness. Underneath his debonair demeanor, Michael loves to control situations and people and Catherine is not exempt from this characteristic of his. His threats cause an overriding fear in her life, not only for herself, but for her children.
Eventually, Catherine learns that Michael, having been spurned by Catherine more than once, has become engaged to a young woman from Houston. Catherine learns that a young man,Trent Matthews, has been wounded and she takes him into her care. Each is attracted to the other, but both having been through trying times, are wary of
becoming too involved in a deep relationship.
Throughout the coming months, circumstances develop that leave both Catherine and Trent questioning their future. She has determined that she will return to her home in Galveston when the streets have been fully repaired from the storm of 1900.
In view of all the options facing Catherine, the reader wonders if Trent is just another man who has come into her life only to walk away as Catherine tries to make decisions about her family and her work.The author takes us through a love story in which she shows how difficult it sometimes is for two people to decide if commitment to each other is really meant to happen.
Her research on the early history of Galveston after the hurricane of 1900 reveals what few people know how the citizens of Galveston had to cope while the city undergoes reconstruction. If you read this book first, you will surely want to read the previous three books of the series.