Patricia Harman requesting that I review her newest book,"The Midwife of Hope River". And I was over the moon when I finally opened the fresh binding for the first time.
The story unfolds as we get to know a young midwife during the Great Depression. Patience Murphy, on the run from the law, settles into a sleepy Appalachian town where she hopes to live a quiet, unobtrusive life - remaining hidden, not drawing attention to herself.
After her mentor passes away, she becomes only one of two midwives in a small town where there are more promises than payments and her clients are the ones most in need of care - the castoffs, the poor, and the socially unaccepted. As she ekes out an existence in a difficult time, she forms friendships with unlikely allies in troubled times.
We watch as Patience blossoms into a competent, yet humble midwife, friend, lover, and activist. She stirs her community into reevaluating the unwritten rules of relationships, roles, and race. And, in the process, her heart is opened to the possibility to trust, love, and stand up for those closest to her once again.
My heart was full as I started this beautifully bittersweet novel. The detailed historical accuracy of the racial tension, Union uprisings, and Obstetrical regulations of the time enthralled me, while her personal interactions brought me to whooping out loud in righteous joy and excitement.
I was warmed to my core as she grew and embraced her namesake; Patience - quietly accepting, tolerating, and enduring the troubles and suffering of her own choices and life, while her alias, Lizbeth, also makes peace with her spirit - a vow, to be of righteous and upright moral character, standing up against the evils of her community.
As Patience evolves as a woman, we see the polarity of her wild spirit and her desire for peace and love unite into a fiercely passionate servant leader in her community. I love this book. I love it on so many levels - as a 'good read', as a work of historical fiction, and as a reminder that we never truly reach our destination, we only journey through life.
I recommend Ms. Harman's novel with all of my heart.
"The Midwife of Hope River" is available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. To catch up with Patrician Harmon on her book tour, see here. If you can't see her in person, be sure to check out her virtual book tour.
To get to know Patricia Harman better, visit her
website or Facebook page.
For more information on her other writings, you might be interested in my review of Arm's Wide Open.
Or watch the trailer for The Midwife of Hope River here:
To see is Patricia is going to be in your area during the tour, see the tour schedule here.