Then, the missionary board declares the only way she can serve is to be married.
Now, married in name only, her epic journey west will test her spirit… and the new longings of her heart.
Jody Hedlund has done it again. I fell in love with The Preacher’s Bride, and I’m happy to say her second book is as good as the first. Just as she loosely based her first novel on the life of John Bunyan, here she has interpreted the arduous journey overland to Oregon in 1836 by missionaries Marcus and Narcissa Whitman. Narcissa Whitman became known for the first white woman to cross the Continental Divide. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I’d heard of the Whitmans, but I didn’t associate them with this novel until the Author’s Note at the end of the book. I looked them up online afterward and learned their real story. (If you like happy endings, stick with the book!) Hedlund did a great job with the research, to the point where one really could consider this novel a fictionalized biography.
I knew this book was at the library, but I had to wait about a month to get hold of it. One probable reason is that Marcus and Narcissa began their journey by getting married in Angelica, New York, which is in the next county over from where I live. The church building still stands, although it is no longer used as a church. The chapters set in Angelica, therefore, I could imagine clearly in my mind. I didn’t know other places featured in the tale, but the map at the front of the book helps greatly.
I had problems in putting this book down, and only did so because I needed sleep! I only have one question after finishing it: who is Jody Hedlund going to write about next?
Publisher: Bethany House
Page Count: 384
Publication Date: 11 September 2011