This is going to be a much shorter review than Geraldine Brooks’s Caleb’s Crossing deserves because I’m short on time.
I like good historical fiction but find much of the genre to be overwrought, inaccurate, or unconvincing. Not so with Caleb’s Crossing, which held beautifully to the rather challenging voice and POV Brooks saddled herself with. It’s hard to write from the female point of view about the early days of Massachusetts because so few women could write, let alone find the time to record their views. Brooks fills in with historically credible imagination where the documents leave off, telling the story of the conversion of Martha’s Vineyard’s indigenous population from the standpoint of Bethia Mayfield, the daughter of one of the island’s settlers.
Talk about two populations underrepresented in the historical annals.