Wednesday, October 19, 2011
The Doctor's Lady by Jody Hedlund - A Book Review
Priscilla White yearns to be a missionary. Dr Eli Ernest also longs to serve God as a missionary. Both fully expect to be able to serve as single people, but when the Mission Board declares that they only send out married couples, the two agree to a marriage of convenience so that both can become missionaries. Priscilla leaves her comfortable life in New York behind and travels the treacherous Oregon Trail with her husband and another couple. Through all the hardships they face, she and Eil find both find themselves wishing and longing for the other. Will they admit to having fallen in love or will they keep their marriage as an in-name only business arrangement?
When I first saw this book featured in one of the Christian fiction newsletters I receive via email, I wanted to read it. So I was very excited to be able to obtain a copy to review.
I found the book to be very good. There were a couple of nights I looked at the clock and saw that it was already midnight and I knew I had to put the book down so that I could get up for work the next morning. The characters are real. They have faults and they work hard to overcome them. But they also have great strengths that show how deeply developed they are.
Priscilla struggles with infertility and jealousy around any woman with a baby, or pregnant. She also struggles on her journey West to prove to both herself and her husband that she isn't some society maiden that will run away at the first sign of hardship. Eli struggles with his pride. He's too proud to seek the assistance of others and even accept their advice at times. He's also trying to do God's job quite a lot. The trip West is a huge lesson for both of them. Together they learn that God made them to compliment the other one and each one must come to the realization that they need to be who they were created to be.
I've never had to face issues like Priscilla faces. I've never had to move across the country far from friends and family and all that is held dear. I pray I never have to. Because I seriously don't think I'd have the strength to do it. But she did. And she fell in love with not only her husband, but the Indians to whom they were going to minister to. When I think about how easy we, as women, have things today and don't have the worries like Priscilla had, I realize how strong she was. She faced things like cholera, marriage to a total stranger, leaving all that is familiar without the modern conveniences of things like cell phones and computers. Her faith was strong. She did what she had to do without question.
Having read Jody Hedlund's other book before reading this one, I knew I'd enjoy this. And I wasn't wrong. I will definitely be keeping an eye out any additional books that she writes.
I received this book for free from Bethany House Publishers for the purpose of reviewing. My thoughts and opinions are my own.