One thing I've learned this past year is that I really like survival fiction. I also like tragic stories and well written historical fiction. So this book sounds absolutely tops to me:
The epic journey of the Donner Party, through the eyes of Tamsen Donner
In the summer of 1846, Tamsen Donner, her husband, George, their five daughters, and eighty other pioneers embarked on the California-Oregon Trail. During that ill-fated trip, early snows trapped them for over four months in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Almost half the group perished, and some resorted to unimaginable means to survive—making the Donner Party an enduringly fascinating episode in American history.
Set during those long, snowbound months and told through the hauntingly imagined journal entries and letters of Tamsen, IMPATIENT WITH DESIRE is psychologically penetrating, dramatic, provocative, romantic, and intimate. Remarkable passages and tenderly acute, heartbreaking scenes will leave readers breathless.
Impatient with Desire releases in March from Hyperion.