By: Kelly O’Connor McNees

Published: April 1, 2014


This giveaway is now closed. Thanks to all who entered . 

THE ISLAND OF DOVES has already received praise from author Kristina Riggle who states it was “unforgettable” and author Susan Gregg Gilmore states, “It was simply gorgeous.”  I will have to agree with them and include words like captivating and impassioned.  

THE ISLAND OF DOVES shares the story of two women in the early 1800’s.  Magdelaine Fonteneau defies all ideas of what a woman should be by doing the job of a fur trader after her husband died much too soon. After suffering the loss of her husband and then both of her sisters, she sets off to make sure she and her son can survive.  Now as a wealthy and powerful woman, she wants to somehow redeem the loss of her sisters by opening her home on Mackinac Island to those who need protection and a new life.  

Susannah Fraser lives the life every woman dreams in Buffalo.  She resides in the finest mansion and is married to one of the wealthiest and most powerful of men.  What those on the outside don’t know is that her husband, Edward, is a monster and her home is a prison.  Susannah is completely cut off from the outside world with no family left and no friends to talk to.  One day she meets a nun who offers her an escape from the world of abuse and she takes the chance at freedom on Mackinac Island.

Even though I found THE ISLAND OF DOVES to be a bit predictable, the vivid characters and scenery depictions held my interest.  McNees certainly knows how to plant you in the time and place of her novel and make the reader feel a part of the character’s lives.  You feel the physical pain and debilitating fear of Susannah, the determination of Magdelaine, and the kindness of each of the strangers in Susannah path to freedom.  The descriptions of the remote Mackinac Island make me want to visit and hide away there myself.

Magdelaine and Susannah ended up really helping each other.  Susannah saw ways to encourage Magdelaine and Magdelaine had to remind Susannah of her own strength. I loved this quote from Magdelaine:

You did escape him. 
You’re stronger than you think you are. 
Real strength isn’t in the fight. It’s in the enduring, 
the going on even when it seems like all hope is lost. Page 224
Most of the characters in this novel had their own personal battles ahead of them.  They each needed strength to face them and the perseverance to find hope and forgiveness on the other end. At the end of the novel, you are left feeling hopeful for each of the characters and their future.

My review is part of a series of blogs offering reviews and giveaways of THE ISLAND OF DOVES.  To read other reviews and sign up to win at other sites, see the tour list below.  Scroll to the bottom of the post to enter my giveaway of a copy of THE ISLAND OF DOVES.


April 1

Devourer of Books spotlight + giveaway
Entertainment Realm review + giveaway
April 4
Chefdruck review + giveaway
A Novel Review spotlight + giveaway
April 8
April 10
Hand Crafted Reviews review + giveaway
April 11
Rockland Mother review + giveaway
April 15
April 16
Burton Book Review review + giveaway
April 18
My Book Addiction and More review + giveaway
April 21
Maurice on Books spotlight + giveaway
April 22
Midlife at the Oasis review + giveaway
April 23
The Minding Spot spotlight + giveaway
April 28
April 29
Leah’s Thoughts spotlight + giveaway
April 30
Sincerely Stacie review + giveaway

Kelly O’Connor McNees – Photo by Kate Emerson, source

Kelly O’Connor McNees grew up in Lansing, Michigan, and holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from the University of Michigan and a master’s in English education from DePaul University. A former seventh-grade teacher and editorial assistant, Kelly runs a busy editorial business called Word Bird Editorial Services, through which she helps authors of all stripes improve their craft and prepare their writing for publication. She is the author of three novels: THE ISLAND OF DOVES, THE LOST SUMMER OF LOUISA MAY ALCOTT, and IN NEED OF A GOOD WIFE, which was a finalist for the 2012 Willa Award. Kelly lives in Chicago with her husband and daughter. For more on Kelly, you can visit her website at or find her on Twitter, HERE and Facebook, HERE.

I am giving away one copy of THE ISLAND OF DOVES by Kelly O’Connor McNees. Here is your chance to enter to win a copy.  This giveaway is open to US residents only.  The giveaway will be open through Tuesday, May 6, at 11:59 PM. I will choose a winner on Wednesday, May 7 using I will contact the winner through email.  The winner will have 48 hours to respond or I will choose another winner. Only one entry per person please.  I am not responsible for shipping the book and/or for the book not being delivered, but I will do my best to make sure you receive your prize. 
If you simply can’t wait to enter to win your own copy, click the photo below to purchase your own copy.
I was sent a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. This review is my honest opinion. I was not compensated in any other way for this review.  If you choose to purchase this book through the above link, I may receive a small commission without you having to pay a cent more for the book. Thank you for supporting reviews. 
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1 Comment

  1. Anita LeBeau on May 1, 2014 at 12:53 am

    I appreciate an honest review!! I do want to read this! I have one of her other books on my shelf too. Face it I have book issues.

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