Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap by Paulette Mahurin

Review:  The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap is a story which revolved around five important characters who would loved  to live the kind of life they craved without being scrutinized and crucified, but they found themselves in a hateful society where their kinds of ideal love life was rebuked and despised. The story illustrated loyalty, true friendship, hate, prejudice comparison to race, the jews and as well as gays. Moreso assimilating all the Oscar Wilde’s quotes explored in this book, the story furtherore portrayed lives, the essence of living, honest, love, survival, death, good reputation and all!

To start with, while reading this book I could not break away from it. It’s a story with a lot of depth, good story backdrop and originality. At some point, I thought I had tears in my eyes as I neared the end of the book. Not that I’m too emotional, but this book is just way to transcendent not to affect anyone greatly. Just because I have access to the author I could not let her be. From time to time I contacted her to know what next happened in the book chapter after chapter, but she is a good suspense holder! She did well not telling me anything until I read through it all.

The story began in 1985 with the breaking news spreading around the world of the conviction of the well known and most successful playwright, novelist, and short story writer Oscar Wilde. Wilde was sentenced to two years of hard labor under the Britain’s Criminal Law for sexual activity between members of the same sex.

This incident caused people’s attitudes to change about homosexuality from a mood of pity and tolerance to hatred and abuse. The news was that Wilde was caught in the act with another mate, Lord Douglas, the son of the Marquins of Queensberry, and Victorian London would not tolerate such immoral decadence.

In Red River Pass in a small town of Nevada this kind of occurrence had also happened. The Parker boys had been playing out by the lake when they ran across Harold Simons hugging Bert Langlay. When the Parker boys ran home and told their parents, they had exaggerated what they saw; said the men were kissing, starting to undress. Within twenty four hours two families were thrown into irreversible turmoil. The story spread like untamed fire in the town. After days of the incident Harold Simons took a gun to his own head and blew his brains out. A week later both families moved from Red River Pass.

Also in the town were two women Mildred Dunlap and Edra Fitzgerald who loved themselves in ways couple love one another and they tried to protect themselves from the hateful society with stories of Wilde and the Harold and Bert.

Mildred was the brunt of ridicule and of jokes in the town because she has a prematurely receding hairline with some facial hair above her lips, muscles which showed through her dress sleeves like a man’s through his shirt, and a height which towered over a lot of men of the town at close to six feet. She was called a giant cow and the ugliest curse of the Red River Pass.

Josie’s jealousy ran deeper by the day for Mildred. She was a character with forceful personality which no one could understand why she had so much distaste for Mildred. She so hated her that she would go extra mile to destroy her. Josie and the sister hood of talebearers in the town had nothing to do with their lives than scout for lives to ruin. They were most vicious and the most closed minded petty people in the town that would give up their lives to see Mildred cleaned out.

Mildred being wealthy and controlling the purse strings of the community looked past this hatred and continued to help the people with her money, but was dying inside for all the hounding.  Despite Mildred generosity she remained Josie’s target for destruction and she knew it. With all the discrimination going about homosexuality, Mildred feared for her life and that of her cousin.

While the town people and head talebearer Josie busied with the news of Oscar Wilde, Mildred came up with the trick to get Charley Milpass attention who at the time struggled to save the life of the love of his life Emma Milpass suffering cancer. This Mildred’s plan was to avert any suspicion from forming around her and Edra. She wanted Josie and group to unfold another rumor different from what was really happening. 

At first Mildred's plan failed. Charley who suffered unthinkable loss, of the love of his life, would not welcome any woman in his heart. However, with time Charley came to realized Mildred was a good person inside and out and the physical ugliness was just a cross for her to bear in her life. He became her true friend. Then, tittle-tattle swelled that Charley who claimed could never loved another woman but Emma was dating Mildred, impregnated her, and was set to marry her.
Mildred was glad for this new focus Josie and cliques now occupied themselves with, nonetheless with intensity of the gossip which was damaging to the human soul, on the inside, Mildred kept breaking down terribly from the years of none stop persecutions. 

With the sweet friendship Mildred found in Charley, Edra feared she would lose Mildred to Charley. At nine-year-old Edra whose mother died at childbirth was raped. In all the months of her recovery from the shock of the rape, it was Mildred who nurtured Edra back to life again. On Edra’s twelfth birthday, three years after the rape, things forever changed in her life and between her and Mildred.

Edra felt unsaved with people and could not bring herself to love a man. Only in Mildred did she found any form of love and security. She confessed how she felt for Mildred on her birthday, their love life kicked started.

Charley found out about Mildred and Edra’s love life, knowing what grief it was to lose a loved one, he didn’t tell on them, rather he became supportive of their relationship. With time Edra relaxed around Charley, when she was sure that Charley only intended to be a true friend to Mildred and could never love another like Emma his late wife. The three became true friends, and once again Edra could trust again another person different from her family.

Helene Whitmore, one of the talebearers lost her only son little Frankie while she planned with Josie and the rest to bring Mildred down. Josie and husband Satchel were shooed out of the town to Carson City and Mildred had her life and good health back.

At the end of this book I found that Mildred had been hounded by her past because of her father's deeds and a man who looked like the father whom people believed they must had been related; Mildred was persecuted for this passed people’s mistakes without mercy and misguided vengeance. 

This is all I’m going to give out from this book.

Summary: This is an absolute fascinating, great and touching novel. The author of this book is a very nice person. In a little while our paths had crossed, I’ve been touched by her true kindness. At some point when I couldn’t get this book with the readable format on my smart phone because my lap top was faulty, she gifted me the book on Amazon. Auntie P, thanks very kindly for the chance given me to review this wonderful book. 

I found Edra’s transformation somewhat annoying at first when I didn’t know where the story was heading. I assumed the worse for Mildred. I imagined she would be killed or something. I felt Edra should have looked someplace else for another woman to love rather than put the well-meaning protagonist Mildred Dunlap in trouble. As soon as I knew that there was no harm to cause damage on Mildred’s life, I regained my peace. In Friendship, relationship, Mildred is an ideal person to have as a partner. I felt a great connection to her a great deal. She reminded me of myself;  you do good to people and in turn you are rewarded with evil. 

The story world of this book was perfect. It slowly played out organically. It was like everything was happening around me in the real life. Overall, this story has other mesmerizing characters to hold you spellbind to the book. It’s a well crafted story. I recommend you get your copy of The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap if you haven’t. 

Rating:  Five Stars

Sum It Up:   Touching, Adult Female Friendship Book


  1. Thank you, Darmie, for this incredibly excellent review, for your time, and all the help you've given to shine a light on the subject of intolerance and also to help me in helping rescue animals. You have won a place in my heart forever.
    Paulette, aka auntie

  2. You are always welcome Auntie P. I would say I'm most grateful for gifting me the book in the first place to review. It's my first time to really review a book, I didn't think it would come out this good, though i put my best into it. *Smiles* I'm glad it did! You will always be in my heart too. You have a sincere good spirit. Thank you!


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