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Debut Novel by Marjorie Hersom Gets Positive Reviews From Leading Book Review Publications

The historical fiction novel is inspired by the life story of the author’s great-great-grandmother.

Alexandria, Virginia, USA – WEBWIRE

A novel of personal history offers readers a glimpse into the strength of womanhood.

“Captive Bride” (ReadersMagnet, 2017) by Marjorie J. Hersom is based on the life of Maria de los Santos y Castro, the author’s Chamorro ancestor. Doubling as a personal history that seeks to explain – and preserve – her family’s legacy, the novella tells a coming-of-age story that abounds with themes, such as abuse, violence, tragedy, love, family, marriage, healing, and friendship… with a slight bent on feminism.
“Captive Bride” received generally positive reviews from leading book review newspapers. Jo Meyerhof from the Manhattan Book Review gave the book five (out of five) stars, writing that “the book looks unflinchingly at the horrors of what life as a woman could be like in the past, but it also shows the strength women could call upon and the strong bonds of female friendship.”
Meyerhof is not the only book reviewer impressed with the book’s premise. James Brewer wrote for the San Francisco Book Review that ‘Captive Bride’ “shows that while times have changed, not all has changed for women in society and that it is okay to cry and be upset about your situation but that through the pain you can find the strength to survive any situation life throws your way.”
Tulsa Book Review’s Tamara Benson praised Hersom’s effort in sharing her ancestor Maria’s story with her family and friends. However, she found the book lacking as a modern historical fiction due to its use of dialect throughout the work. Benson finished her review, writing “it is a lovely addition to her (Hersom) family story.”
Writing for the Seattle Book Review, Daniel Casey took notice of the book’s historical and feminist aspects. “Readers experience a different kind of adventure story, one showing the consequences and lawlessness of colonization,” wrote Casey, “but Hersom’s novella also chronicles how people adapt to environments and create community.
“What is perhaps most engaging about Hersom’s narrative is how Maria is able to ground herself thanks to the community of women who immediately come to her aid and buttress her. This kind of unity is inspiring and the catalyst for what would become the lineage leading to Hersom herself.”
The US Review of Books’ Kathleen Heaney emphasized the themes of tragedy and love, among others, in her review for ‘Captive Bride.’ “Tragedy is illustrated with interesting detail in the description of the death of one of Maria’s children and of the torture Maria endures on her journey to Bonin. Love is evident in the way Hanna and Henrietta gently care for Maria when she arrives on the island and when Savory slowly wins Maria’s heart with friendship and romantic love after Mazarro’s death.”

Book reviewers are all in unison about the book’s potential impact on contemporary life and social issues. “This may not be the nineteenth century anymore, but those are two lessons we all need to learn,” wrote Meyerhof.

Wrote Heaney: “The way the author tenderly tells this family saga sends a message that knowing one’s family history and stories can reveal important life lessons.”

Marjorie J. Hersom’s “Captive Bride” is available at her Website:

Captive Bride
Written by Marjorie J. Hersom
Published by ReadersMagnet LLC                       
Published date: November 28, 2017
Paperback price: $9.88

About the Author 
A first-time author, Marjorie J. Hersom wrote “Captive Bride” based upon the stories her father related during their family Sunday dinners. Marjorie was born on the island of Guam to Thomas Edward Mayhew and Lillian Julia Hererro. Marjorie left Guam at the age of nine with her mother and three younger siblings to escape the impending Japanese attack of the island. After a seven-day journey aboard a Boeing Clipper, the family was reunited with their father in San Francisco.

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 Captive Bride
 Marjorie J. Hersom
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