Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Woman of Courage - Wanda E. Brunstetter
Amanda Pearson has essentially been left at the altar, as her fiance tells her just before their wedding that he's leaving her for her best friend. Rather than remain in shame within their Quaker community, Amanda convinces her father that they should set out for the Oregon Territory to bring the Good News to the Nez Perce Indians. Trials and hardships shadow Amanda as she travels, and she is forced to examine her faith and her decisions to pursue this path.
I don't read a lot of historical fiction, but I do enjoy the time period of the expansion west. I can't even imagine the hardships of crossing the country on horseback, with very few comfort items and months on the trail. Amanda doesn't immediately strike the reader as one of hardy stock, yet she perseveres through tragedy and difficult circumstances while keeping her faith intact and even attempting to share the Word with all she comes in contact with. Her character comes across as naive, yet sincere, and it's believable that she would grow on the people who initially resist her "Bible thumping." However, I did find it difficult to believe that that many tragedies could befall both her and every person she met. Maybe not the tragedies themselves, but the catalyst they provided to turn the characters to God felt too neat and tidy. Not all tragedies lead to conversions, and not all conversions are proceeded by tragedy, but you wouldn't know that from this book.
Overall, I give this book 3 stars. It could have felt a little deeper, with more examination of the faith that Amanda was sharing, but the characters were tied together well; and as a reader, I cared about them enough to be happy when things turned out well for them.
Edited to add:
This book contains several references to, and scenes of abuse - both domestic and child. I wouldn't want any readers to be unaware of this facet, whether it might affect them personally, or be something they'd want to be aware of before recommending it to others.
You can find Woman of Courage HERE.
You can find Wanda's website HERE.
Odd disclaimer: I was supposed to receive a copy of this book from Barbour Books, in exchange for my honest review. However, there seems to be a mix-up, and I never received my copy. But no big deal, I borrowed the e-book from my library so that I could still review it as I promised!