Those old covers are a lot of fun aren’t they? Nice to see Bristow’s books out in nice spanking new editions though.
Jubilee Trail is about just-out of-finishing school Garnet, who meets and falls in love with Oliver Hale while he’s visiting New York from California. Garnet has an adventurous spirit that Oliver indulges and they’re off to California via the Jubilee Trail. Along the way they meet up with Florinda, the “bad” woman with a heart of gold and Garnet and Florinda become great friends, and support each other during the good and bad times as they cross the country and come to California before it is governed by the US.
The author does a very nice job of setting the scenery and the conditions along the trail — you almost feel the dust in your mouth and on your skin and hair. I loved the way she used John’s love of nature so that you can visualize everything from the snow topped mountains, to the red rocks of the southwest, to the wide open ranges, and the flora and fauna of California.
All in all a jolly good yarn, I had a hard time putting this down until the very end at the discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill. Highly recommended for any lover of historical fiction, and as this was written 50+ years ago, the love scenes (if you can call them that) are very chaste and well suited for a younger reader.