Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Review of Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee

Read for: Audio Book Challenge & BTAF

Synopsis: "Missouri, 1849: Samantha dreams of moving back to New York to be a professional musician—not an easy thing if you’re a girl, and harder still if you’re Chinese. But a tragic accident dashes any hopes of fulfilling her dream, and instead, leaves her fearing for her life. With the help of a runaway slave named Annamae, Samantha flees town for the unknown frontier. But life on the Oregon Trail is unsafe for two girls, so they disguise themselves as Sammy and Andy, two boys headed for the California gold rush. Sammy and Andy forge a powerful bond as they each search for a link to their past, and struggle to avoid any unwanted attention. But when they cross paths with a band of cowboys, the light-hearted troupe turn out to be unexpected allies. With the law closing in on them and new setbacks coming each day, the girls quickly learn that there are not many places to hide on the open trail.

This beautifully written debut is an exciting adventure and heart-wrenching survival tale. But above all else, it’s a story about perseverance and trust that will restore your faith in the power of friendship."

My Review: I picked this book up since Lee will be one of the authors at the BTAF and I wanted to try one of her books before going to the panels. Plus a historical western fiction sounds just right up my alley. I struggled for a bit to get into the setting but once I settled in the characters and the story ran away with me. I don't know how historically accurate it was but it sounded pretty on point and in the end it didn't matter to me because this was all about the characters. I absolutely loved the characters, all of them in fact. Each character was unique and well developed, they are on an epic adventure across the old west and you can't help but root for them with each new hurdle in their paths. There is a touch of romance but it is a nice slow burn and it doesn't take over the story at all, it is more about friendships and the families you create in life. I will definitely be picking up more books by Stacey Lee in the future!

My Rating: I have a soft spot for western books and this one definitely hits that with the old West setting and the pioneering, cowboys, outlaws and some really great characters.  I really enjoyed this one and give it a rating of Four Paws!


  1. I've heard good things about this one. I'm glad you ended up liking it. That makes meeting the author so much more fun.

  2. I have no experience with western books, but it is something I'd like to try.