The Whip by Karen Kondazian

Name:                              The Whip

Author:                             Karen Kindazian

Rating:                              6

General Rating:

I must give full disclosure. I hate western or cowboy books but this one is worthy of a read because it is based on true life and shows the struggle of women in the 1800s.

Skip factor:

10%  I skipped a bit of the second quarter of the book.

Who should read?:

If you like westerns, you should definitely read this novel. Certainly, you’ll rate this story higher than my 6.

Summary:          The story begins at the end. A journalist Timothy Byrne rides a stagecoach with whip (driver) Charley Pinehurst, then back tracks in time to the story of Charlotte and Lee, two orphans. The book follows their younger years and eventually leads to Charlotte taking on the identity of a man, Charley, and becoming a whip.

Characters:        While I loved the writing and often found myself lost in the words and descriptions, I failed to fall in love with any characters. More than likely this was because I just do not like reading westerns. Period. I won’t belabor the point.

Storyline:           This was a book my book club chose to read and although some did not like the beginning, which really was the end, I enjoy books that begin at the end and regress. So, this did catch my attention. I also love the fact this story shows how women were not (and in many ways still are not) privy to the same opportunities men have. For that sole reason, I am reviewing this book. The storyline has substance, was based on a true woman, and is believable. The main conflict (women’s plight) could not be resolved and is not yet resolved today.

There were times I thought the story lacked emotional strength, but then Charley’s sometimes emotionless character may have been by design. My book club argued as such.

Writing style:    Here, I must reiterate. I am rating this a 6 because I dislike westerns but I truly loved Kondazian’s writing style.  Narrative and dialogue were well balanced. As an author myself, several times I reread beautifully crafted paragraphs. The reading was easy. Especially if you like cowboy stories.

Read this author again?:               Maybe. If it’s not a western.

Read on!


Cyndie Zahner is the author of The Suicide Gene, a psychological thriller, and Dream Wide Awake, a paranormal novel that is totally fiction, but has been inspired by her own experiences. See the video of her own paranormal experience, a premonition of 9/11 here. Follow her on InstagramTwitter, Facebook, Goodreads, BookBub, LinkedIn and purchase her books on Amazon