Genre: Woman’s Fiction, General Fiction ( Adult)

Age: 18+ (mature themes, violence)

Recommendation: Absolutely, positively yes. You, your friends, your mother…everyone should read this. This will especially appeal to those that enjoy accurate historical fiction and fiction with a very resilient and intelligent female heroine. 

Type: Series, the second Laura Elliston novel Blood Oath is set to be released August 2016.

Summary: This is the real thing. +robust descriptive writing + strong and intelligent heroine +raw and gritty action +well researched + emotion inducing +realistic


Outlander meets post-Civil War unrest in this fast-paced historical debut.

When Dr. Catherine Bennett is wrongfully accused of murder, she knows her fate likely lies with a noose unless she can disappear. Fleeing with a bounty on her head, she escapes with her maid to the uncharted territories of Colorado to build a new life with a new name. Although the story of the murderess in New York is common gossip, Catherine’s false identity serves her well as she fills in as a temporary army doctor. But in a land unknown, so large and yet so small, a female doctor can only hide for so long.

Full Review:

Sawbones by Melissa Lenhardt is a story of true resilience. Faced with almost guaranteed conviction for a crime she didn’t commit, Dr. Catherine Bennett  leaves the only life she has ever known and travels with her maid in search of a life untainted by the lies spread by her former patient’s wife. In a time when importance and verity are judged off wealth and the vast American frontiers are rapidly drawing new settlers, traveling across the unknown risked death just about as often as the newly ended Civil War.

With hope that her reputation didn’t precede her, Catherine changed her name and her story but in a time where women are still expected to be meek and completely at the service of their male counterparts, a working female, especially a practicing physician, will not go unnoticed.

This story is so emotion inducing I feel like I went from proud, to outraged, to shocked, to heartbroken, to hopeful and everywhere in between all in a little over three hundred pages. This story rings true to how I would imagine a woman in her position would feel. Her thoughts, actions and outlook on life make her one of the strongest heroine’s I have ever read about. I fell in love with this story. Faced with insurmountable odds and put through some of the most gut wrenching situations imaginable, she fights with her all, and even brings comedic relief in situations that seem to hold no hope.

“Camille and her girls would have attended, as well as my other clients from Twenty-Seventh Street who would not believe me capable of murder or, if so, they would not think less of me. I smiled as I envisioned my funeral attended only by whores. “

When the description mentions Outlander it is for good reason, as a huge fan of the series, the ability of both Gabaldon and Lenhardt to get a strong response out of me is impressive.  I am expecting this series to accomplish great things. I have no doubt the budding romance we see start to grow in this book, will be one to follow through the next books released in this series.

With very detailed violence and mention of both consensual and non-consensual sex, this book is for adults only. Also, be aware this book contains the racial epithets that were common speak during this time period.

All in all, this is one of my newly discovered favorites, and I will be purchasing this in paperback/hardcover as gifts this year, as well as obtaining one for myself.

On Amazon: Sawbones

On Goodreads: Sawbones

On B&N: Sawbones

Disclaimer: I obtained a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. Thank you so much Melissa Lenhardt and Redhook Books.