Title: Salt the Snow
Author: Carrie Callaghan
Publish Date: February 4, 2020
What's the Story?:
From Goodreads.com: "American journalist
Milly Bennett has covered murders in San Francisco, fires in Hawaii, and
a civil war in China, but 1930s Moscow presents her greatest challenge
yet. When her young Russian husband is suddenly arrested by the secret
police, Milly tries to get him released. But his arrest reveals both
painful secrets about her marriage and hard truths about the Soviet
state she has been working to serve. Disillusioned, and pulled toward
the front lines of a captivating new conflict, Milly must find a way to
do the right thing for her husband, her conscience, and her heart."
My Two Cents:
"Salt the Snow" is the fascinating story of American journalist Milly Bennett, who has a myriad of world changing events that she has covered over the years. The story that seems to tempt her most is the story of the creation of Soviet Russia. She is attracted to the idea of something so different from the American dream and finds herself going to search for a way to be a part of it all, even when it puts her life and the lives of some of those that she loves in danger. This is an interesting story with a lot of historical detail about a not often explored perspective.
Milly Bennett is a fascinating character. She's brash. She's outspoken. She always holds her own opinion up high regardless of who it bothers. On top of being an American where Americans are not necessarily welcomed, she is an American female journalist, all three descriptors that are easily held against her throughout the book. She's a strong character, who is unafraid of standing up for her beliefs. I really enjoyed following her through this book.
Most of the book takes place in Russia as Milly is trying to figure out why her husband, Zhenya, has been arrested. As the story unfolds, we see that their marriage is unconventional and it may be that which has caused him to be arrested. We get a lot of insight into how Milly must navigate the system in order to figure out what has happened and to try to fix things. We also get a view of her journalist side, which was definitely interesting to me!
Before this book, I knew very little about Americans who went to Soviet Russia at the beginning of it because they were excited about what this new economic model might offer them. I love when historical fiction explores something that is off the beaten path and this part of history certainly is for me. I really wish that the book would have explored a little bit more about why Milly was so intrigued by this and why she continued to be intrigued even when her husband ends up in jail based on breaking or potentially breaking the new Soviet roles. The insight into the attraction would have been helpful to the story line.
Overall, this was a really solid story with a memorable character that whet my appetite for more!