This wonderful novel takes us to 19th century Massachusetts. It is set on Cape Ann, north of Boston. Dogtown is an inland settlement which, by 1814, is being slowly depopulated as its residents move toward the seaside towns with their better prospects. Only leftovers and rejects remain. However, their stories are fascinating. Diamant, author of the bestseller The Red Tent, intriduces us to a group of widows, orphans, drunks, and others.
While this may not be a strictly accurate representation of the historical facts of the Dogtown settlement, it does give us food for thought about life in the 1800's. Diamant gives the characters some views and ideas which are probably unlikely for the time, but the story is delightful in its twists and turns. I hope there were people like some of these in historical Massachusetts.