Timber: Fire in the Pines
Sarah Stewart, betrayed, rejected and penniless, strikes out for Minnesota's timber country. She discovers the only work available is in the lumber camps - but not for a woman. Disguised as a boy, she hires on as a cook's helper. The foreman Thor is hell-bent on getting what he needs from the timber- enough money to return to Sweden as a rich man and get revenge upon the girl who rejected him. Fooled by Sarah's disguise, he is bewildered by what he feels for this "boy". After a summer in camp, the tension between the two is unbearable, and Sarah sheds her disguise and hires on as an accountant in the lumbermill in town. Forces conspire to keep them apart, but in the end the Great Hinckley Fire of 1894 is the force that decides their fate.
A great combination of fiction and history. As you enjoy the emotions of the characters you learn a lot about the workings of the lumber industry in the late 1800's.
Paperback, 452pp. 2012