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Linda K. Hubalek's Cultivating Hope Narrated by Ann M. Richardson

Cultivating Hope
Planting Dreams Series, Book 2
Author: Linda K. Hubalek
Narrator: Ann M. Richardson
3 hours 15 minutes
Publisher: Butterfield Books Ltd.
Whispersync for Voice-ready

Author Linda K. Hubalek
Cultivating Hope
Book 2 of the Planting Dreams series




Narrator Ann M. Richardson



Narrator Review:

Ann M. Richardson's narration of Cultivating Hope will blow your socks off. You will
begin thinking you are actually listening to Charlotta Johnson speak, it is so genuine sounding,
it can get down right scary. It's like tapping into to the past and experiencing everything Charlotta is doing, hearing, feeling and seeing.  Ann Richardson, sounds exactly like I think Charlotta should sound. Amazing narration, as Ms. Richardson speaks from her heart or maybe it's she speaks from Charlotta's heart and it comes through hers. This is a not to be missed series for you history buffs. It is thrilling, and packs a punch in just a little over three hours. I will be sorry when the series is over and so will you. Listen and love Cultivating Hope, by Linda K. Hubalek.

Book Review:

Cultivating Hope from the Planting Dreams Series, picks up a year after the Johnson family has been homesteading on the Kansas prairie. In one year much has happened to this family that we have come to love and admire. They had heartbreaking losses, and their already small and meager harvest goes to the grasshoppers and they are once again worried how they will feed their children and livestock. The 1874 locust invasion was not just a lot of locust it was millions of them, so many they blackened the sky, ate everything in their path, stripped trees bare, ate clothes off the line, and pretty much devastated everything in several states. When they were done, they left behind their stench and excrement's that polluted the streams, and ponds.

Many homesteaders moved and left their land others like the Johnson's toughed it out and survived. They need rain and more rain but it refuses to come. The drought has been terrible, leaving them with scarce amounts of food to eat. People are scouring the land for anything green to feed their animals, others are turning the garden yet again hoping for a missed potato or other edible. If not for the aid from the good people in the East, that sent food and clothing to the suffering citizens of Kansas, the Johnson's and many other good people may have starved to death.

These pioneer's were sturdy stock, most were hopeful that things would get better, they'd have a good harvest, a good rain, or like in Annie's song, Tomorrow, they lived on prayers, hope, and tomorrow. By 1876 there are enough people that they have a school, a church, and shops. Although Charlotta did not have much schooling, she is grateful that her children are able to go. She was wise enough to know the value of her children learning to read, write, and do math. So off they all go unless there is harvesting or planting to do.

So domesticity goes on pretty smoothly for a time as Charlotta and Samuel strive towards their goal of having a real home with a good producing farm. In 1880, they are well on their way to achieving their goal when they build their new home and some of the long and dearly held dreams are bearing fruit. Sadly, an especially sever winter grips Kansas with fifteen foot snow drifts and snow so deep, that Charlotta can barely get to the barn to find her son and husband. It is a terrible, terrible winter and little Esther has for some reason gone out side and Charlotta can't find her. She finds a glove and her dinner pail but not the child.
I found this to be a very touching story about Esther, and her determination, kind warmheartedness and pluck to do what she thought was the right thing. Esther rapidly became my favorite person in this astonishing story.
  Linda Hubalek has skillfully merged fact and fiction to give the reader/listener a taste of pioneer life and the hardships they suffered through, along with their joys and times of fun. We feel how important family was and the church played a significant role in most people's life. They gathered to pray, make friends, help one another to succeed and without their religion and churches America would not have become the prosperous and generous nation it is now. They survived and flourished on faith, hope and charity.

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