Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Spotlight: Broken Ground by Karen Halvorsen Schreck

Broken Ground
by Karen Halvorsen Schreck

Howard/Simon and Schuster
Publication Date: May 3, 2016
Paperback, ebook
ISBN: 9781476794839

Newly married to her childhood sweetheart, 21-year-old Ruth Warren is settling into life in a Depression-era, East Texas oil town when she learns that her young husband has been killed in an oil rig accident. Ruth is devastated, but then gets a chance for a fresh start: a scholarship from a college in Pasadena, CA. Ruth decides to take a risk and travel west, to pursue her one remaining dream to become a teacher.

At college Ruth tries to fit into campus life, but her grief holds her back. When she spends Christmas with old family friends, she meets Thomas Everly, whose own struggles have instilled in him a commitment to social justice, and led him to work with Mexican migrant farmworkers in a camp east of Los Angeles. With Thomas, Ruth sees another side of town, and another side of current events: the numerous forced deportations without due process of Mexicans, along with United States citizens of Mexican descent.

After Ruth is forced to leave school, she visits Thomas and sees that he has cobbled together a night school for the farmworkers’ children. Ruth begins to work with the children, and establishes deep friendships with people in the camp. When the camp is raided and the workers and their families are rounded up and shipped back to Mexico, Ruth and Thomas decide to take a stand for the workers’ rights—while promising to love one another.

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"Much to enjoy in Schreck's well-written, lyric novel...Readers will love Ruth's stamina and heart, and come away with a new understanding of immigrant experiences both then and now." ~Publishers Weekly

"The characters remind the reader that while the world is full of broken people, promises and ground, there is hope. Ruth is an encouraging character who finds herself after losing everything." ~RT Book Reviews (4 Stars)

"Karen Halvorsen Schreck tells a compelling story, emotionally honest and beautifully written." ~Joshilyn Jackson, author of The Opposite of Everyone


About the Author:

Karen Halvorsen Schreck is the author of three previous novels, Sing for Me, Dream Journal, and While He Was Away. She received her doctorate in English and Creative Writing from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her short stories have received various awards, including a Pushcart Prize and an Illinois State Arts Council Grant. A freelance writer and frequent visiting professor of English at Wheaton College, Karen lives with her husband and two children in Wheaton, Illinois.

Find Karen on twitter: twitter.com/karenschreck
Find Karen on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/karenhalvorsenschreck/
And on her website: http://www.karenschreck.com/blog/


  1. This novel sounds unforgettable and captivating. Thanks for this great feature and giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  2. I would love to read this. I also enjoy reading books set in that time. Thanks for your giveaway.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  3. I would love to read this. I also enjoy reading books set in that time. Thanks for your giveaway.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  4. This sounds like a very good, insightful read.

  5. Thanks for the giveaway. This sounds like a book I would like to read.


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