Eager to escape the meager existence that surrounds her, Linda Wise dives head first into a life with a newly ordained minister. Though she doesn’t know much about what it’s like being a married woman, she’s willing to give her marriage everything she’s got. Granted, she can’t quite forget about the circumstances that have brought her to where she is now. Nevertheless, she refuses let others dictate what it is she should or shouldn’t do.

I love the fact that Becoming Lin takes place in the same universe as Stony River. Quite a few of the characters we meet in the first book make their way into this one. While this book is a standalone, it does provide references to events that took place in the first book. In a sense this is a continuation of that book, yet it holds up all its own, giving us a further glimpse into Linda’s chaotic life.

Linda is a woman who’s suffered so much. She’s traumatized by the events that took place during her youth, though she does her best to hide it. Through every turn of the page, we get to see vulnerabilities and her insecurities. Deep inside, she wants to be strong. She wants to be more than her husband thinks she is. Yet her past often catches up with her at the most inopportune times.

Tricia is such a wonderful storyteller. She’s given us a story that takes place in what is now a bygone era, painting such vivid pictures of the people, places, the culture, and attitudes that people had back then. Looking at the way things are now, and how they were then, it’s sometimes mind-boggling at how turbulent life was back then. Every little thing a person did was heavily scrutinized. Ideals and morals were also strongly upheld during this time period. Life had a way of turning and heading in unexpected directions, something the author shows us as Linda’s new life unfolds throughout the story itself.

If you haven’t had the chance to read the first book, I recommend you do. It’ll give you a little more insight in regards to some events that are mentioned in this story. A truly captivating story, Becoming Lin is definitely a story that will stick with you long after you’ve read the book.




It’s 1965. Twenty-two-year-old Linda Wise despairs of escaping her overprotective parents and her hometown, where far too many know she was sexually assaulted as a teenager. Deliverance arrives in the form of marriage to the charismatic, twenty-six-year-old Ronald Brunson, a newly ordained Methodist minister who ignites her passion for social justice. Ron tells her war and racial discrimination are symptoms of the “moral rot” destroying the country, conjuring up something dark and rancid in her mind, thrilling in its wickedness. He sweeps her away from Stony River, New Jersey, to serve with him at a church in a speck-on-the-map prairie town in Minnesota. What lies ahead for her over the next seven years is the subject of Tricia Dower’s penetrating study of a marriage and a woman’s evolving sense of self as she confronts the trauma that keeps her from her future, unfettered self. BECOMING LIN evokes the turbulent era of Freedom Riders for civil rights, Vietnam war resistance, the US government’s war against the resisters, sisterhood and the push for equal rights for women, new-age metaphysics, motivational psychology and the unraveling of the traditional marriage contract — an era that resonates today in persistent racism and sexism, perpetual war and wide-reaching government surveillance.




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Tricia DowerAbout The Author:

TRICIA DOWER was a business executive before reinventing herself as a writer in 2002. Her Shakespeare-inspired story collection, Silent Girl (Inanna 2008) was nominated for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award and the George Ryga Award for Social Awareness in Literature. Herizons magazine called it “ambitious and powerful.” Her first novel, Stony River (Penguin Canada 2012 and Leapfrog Press 2016) was shortlisted for the Canadian Authors Association Award for Fiction. The Globe and Mail wrote, “…Dower is a masterful storyteller.” With the publication of her second novel, Becoming Lin (Caitlin Press 2016), the Vancouver Sun wrote, “Some of the most powerful and eloquent Canadian novelists of the 20th and 21st centuries…including Margaret Atwood, Margaret Laurence and Ethel Wilson…open up what had been cloaked in silence, the oppression of women and their self-discoveries in resistance. We can now add to this important liberation canon the name of Tricia Dower.” She won first prize for fiction in The Malahat Review’s 2010 Open Season Awards and first prize for creative nonfiction in subTerranean Magazine’s 2015 literary awards. Her short fiction also has appeared in The New Quarterly, Room of One’s Own, Hemispheres, Cicada, NEO and Big Muddy. A dual citizen of Canada and the United States, Dower lives and writes in Brentwood Bay, BC.







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