Book Review: The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap by Paulette Mahurin

by - Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Title: The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap
Author: Paulette Mahurin
Genre: Historical Fiction
Form: PDF copy
Publisher: Blue Palm Press

Amazon: Paperback

Book Description ~ The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap
A women's Brokeback Mountain. The year was filled with memorable historical events: the Dreyfus Affair divided France; Booker T. Washington gave his Atlanta address; the United States expanded the effects of the Monroe Doctrine in South America; and Oscar Wilde was tried and convicted for gross indecency under Britain's recently passed law that made sex between males a criminal offense. When news of Wilde's conviction went out over telegraphs worldwide, it threw a small Nevada town into chaos. This is the story of what happened when the lives of its citizens were impacted the Wilde news. It is a chronicle of hatred and prejudice with all its unintended and devastating consequences, and how love and friendship bring strength and healing.

The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap Book Review

“This book made me smile. For me, it’s a book that will teach its readers a thing or two about friendship and unconditional love. The author did very well; wonderful plot. The characters are effective. The ending of the story was a bit unexpected – but in a good way. Very well done.”Ara @ My Book and My Coffee

I received this book, a PDF copy, from the author herself in exchange for an honest review.  

When I first read the title of this book, The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap, a lot of things went to my mind – horrible things. I was scared to learn what will happen to Mildred Dunlap, what kind of persecution will she be facing, will there be an execution? Maybe it’s my imagination but I thought that Mildred’s fate was already set out and that I'm about to read something really, really sad. That was not the case. I just loved how the book ended.    

Yes, this book made me smile – and scared, actually. I’ll explain a bit later on why it made me smile. 

The story is set in the 1890s. And back then, apparently, and it figures, most people weren’t ready for unusual relationships such as what, reportedly, Oscar Wilde and another man had. Busybodies (yes, there are busybodies – just what every town has but doesn’t always need) have nothing to do but talk about Oscar Wilde, and of course, judge, judge, judge. Their innocence and close-mindedness annoyed me. A lot.  

While reading the book, I was really scared for Mildred. Well, for Mildred and Edra.  Of course, the townspeople are not aware of their relationship – yet (I won't say if they will or will not know ever. Hah! ;D). Hearing what all those busybodies have to say about the Wilde incident, Mildred worries that those busybodies will know the real deal between her and Edra, and all h*ll will break lose, and, well, in movies, we may have an idea of what may happen next, – and it’s not at all pretty. 

The book made me smile – for a lot of reasons. Let’s just say that at the end of the day, justice was served. And as readers, we'll realize that what they say is true; that it doesn’t matter if you only have two or few friends. Just as long as they are true and real, and will stick with you till the end, you’re all set. 

Let’s take a look at the characters: 

Mildred. She was always persecuted by almost everyone. Weird crowd. When they are in need, they will ask Mildred for a favor but talk and persecute her when she turns her back. Oh, did I mention? Mildred is loaded – sorry for the spoiler there. I loved her character as she is humble and always ready to help people. Even though she knows what happens when she turns her back, she keeps silent and just walks away. She’s not a wimp, don’t get me wrong. She just knows what’s important and what’s not. 

Edra. She had a very rough past but thanks to Mildred, she is coming to. She is a nice person, I feel. Mildred and Edra’s support system is one more thing that made me smile. It’s unbelievable. 

I like these two characters a lot (Mildred and Edra). They were described properly so it feels like you know them therefore, you’d also want to protect them.

Charley. First of all, I loved how the character’s name is spelled. Charley – with an 'e'. :D He is a nice and loving fellow that you will surely admire as well. He’s very understanding and open to new things that give a different perspective. For a man in that time, I was really surprised with his actions. Just goes to show that friendship starts when you least expect it. 

Gus. Oh, good ole Gus. I loved his character, too. Very open minded. As I was getting to know Gus’ character, I can’t help but think that if the Internet was already present at the time he ‘existed’, he would have a book blog, too – maybe called “My Book and My Whiskey” :) You'll know what I mean. 

Josie. Oh, Josie, josie, josie. I hated her the most. I told ya, Paulette’s characters are so effective. Josie is one of the head of the group of women who have nothing better to do but talk about other people’s business, and made it their (at least Josie has) goal to hate Mildred and her ways. I am telling you; at one point, I wanted to strangle her. ;) That’s how mad I was at her character.  

As I always say, you gotta love a book that can give you emotions you never thought you had or you never thought you can feel just by reading a book – like me wanting to strangle Josie. Or me being scared for the main character. 

My lovely readers, viewers, friends and followers, if you like to read a historical fiction that will certainly make you wonder how is it really back then, how hard was it to get accepted if you’re a bit different than usual, and how real friends may exist in the middle of it all then I suggest that you read this book. 

Rating: (My 2nd 5-star rating!)

About the Author:

Paulette Mahurin is a Nurse Practitioner who lives in Ojai, California with her husband Terry and their three dogs-Eli, Max, and Bella. She practices women's health in a rural clinic and writes in her spare time.

Paulette Mahurin: Author of The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap
Photo credit: The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap website

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2 Dazzling Comments

  1. Thank you for this great review. It's such a honor to receive your second only 5-star review. It is my hope, my dream, that others will read this work and contemplate tolerance, the acceptance of another human being for their unique expression. We, us humans, were made in many manifestations, colors, preferences, and as long as we hurt no one in our actions, then I wish for human rights and acceptance for all. I guess the best messages come across in story, stories that we can take away with us, in our hearts, and want to somehow do some good in the world, even if just as small as to smile at someone else in pain.

    Once again, it has been an honor and immense pleasure to connect with you, Ara. Today I will have my book and coffee and think of you, with a great big smile.

    Paulette Mahurin

    1. Aww, Paulette. Thank you. No problem. This book is really wonderful. I agree with you - all the way.

      "as long as we hurt no one in our actions" - definitely.

      Same here. It's been a great pleasure connecting with you. Stay in touch. ;)