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  1. The Doctor's Lady
    The Doctor's Lady
    Jody Hedlund
    Bethany House / 2011 / Trade Paperback
    $11.99 Retail: $16.00 Save 25% ($4.01)
    5 Stars Out Of 5 48 Reviews
    Availability: In Stock
    CBD Stock No: WW208331
4.8 Stars Out Of 5
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  1. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    Infused with Historical Detail and Excitement
    October 26, 2011
    Rambling Reader
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Jody Hedlund emerged last year with the riveting and emotional novel, The Preacher's Bride. Her newest book, The Doctor's Lady, is infused with the historical detail, excitement, and depth that made The Preacher's Bride such a memorable read. Hedlund has a remarkable talent of integrating true stories with elements of fiction to embellish the plot. The Author's Note at the end of the novel added extra substance to an already poignant story. Priscilla's journey as the first white woman to travel West is not just a fanciful musing of an author's imagination; it is based on actual events from the diary of Narcissa Whitman.

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    The first 90 pages of The Doctor's Lady are set on the east coast and focus on the preparations for the journey West. Once Priscilla, Eli, and their travel companions begin their trek, the plot picks up speed and reveals unexpected dangers, challenges, and blessings. It is very easy to romanticize the past and the life of the brave pioneers who ventured into uncharted territory. Hedlund reminds readers of the hardships that Westward travelers faced, without creating a plot that is too sad or heavy. The marriage-of-convenience concept is common in historical fiction novels, but the setting of The Doctor's Lady offer a fresh background. Watching the restrained love develop between Priscilla and Eli enhance the plot with just the right amount of romance.

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    After several long and arduous months, Priscilla's and Eli's journey ends. During the novel they each grow individually and as a couple, risking their lives to follow their calling. From the first page to the very last page, The Doctor's Lady is a finely crafted novel. The last two pages in particular showed Priscilla's growth from a sheltered and idealistic woman to a stronger, more open-minded woman. The conclusion is fully satisfying, tying up the story contained within the pages of the novel, while connecting it with the events mentioned in the Author's Note.

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    I highly recommend both The Doctor's Lady and The Preacher's Bride, especially for fans of historical fiction. I will wait with anticipation for Jody Hedlund's next novel!

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    I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  2. Alabama
    Age: Under 18
    Gender: female
    3 Stars Out Of 5
    Okay, nothing Great
    October 20, 2011
    Hannah Jane
    Alabama
    Age: Under 18
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 3
    Meets Expectations: 4
    The Doctor's Lady | a novel | by Jody Hedlund

    Book Genre: Christian; Historical Fiction; Romance

    Quick Synopsis

    Seeking to travel to India, Priscilla White finds that the missionary board will send her only if she is married - something which she had, because of circumstances beyond her control, thought never to do.

    When rejected by the missionary board, she soon realizes that the only way she is going to become a missionary is by marrying. When she meets Dr. Eli Ernest, who is in the same predicament which she is in, they marry in name only for the sake of convenience, and she ends up traversing the cruel trail to Oregon rather than India.

    The story is {loosely} based on the life of Narcissa Whitman, who was the first white women to travel the Oregon Trail.

    The Good

    I enjoyed the charactors' seeking to live a life of service, and reading about what the journey to Oregon was like back then was quite fascinating - I'm glad we live in a day where we have such easy lives!

    It was also interesting to have the main "romance part" of the book take place after the marriage.

    The Bad

    This was one of those I-know-what-is-going-to-happen-before-I-read-it type of books. The plot, although slightly different, had all the same characteristics as many other historical fiction (read: romance) books which I have read. If you are a big fan of this Genre, however, then you would likely enjoy this book.

    There were also some scenes which make me not recommend this book for young readers - namely, an attempted rape.

    One pet peeve of mine is books which have no real plot synopsis on the cover or inside the front cover. Perhaps this is just because I read so many library books and like to know something about the book before I check it out, but it still annoys me somewhat. But then, it is really just a matter of preference.

    Other Thoughts

    My rating of the book went way up after reading the authors note - in fact, I think I would have enjoyed the book better had I read it myself, even though it would have "ruined" some of the plot. (Not that I had not guessed it by chapter two anyway...)

    My Rating & and Note

    The book was fairly well written, and although I have seen better plots, I definitely enjoyed reading it!

    7 out of 10 stars ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

    Note: I received this book for review purposes from Bethany House Publishers. I was not obligated to write a positive review and was not compensated in any other way.
  3. Roxboro, NC
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Fantastic Historical Fiction!
    October 18, 2011
    Lehrerin
    Roxboro, NC
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Called to be a missionary in the far-away land of India, Priscilla White eagerly awaited her first appointment. Dr. Eli Ernest had spent a year exploring the wilds of Oregon, meeting the native Nez Perce and establishing support for the first Christian mission in the area. Both were devastated ed when their backers refused to send them to the mission field unmarried. With few choices and their calls urgent on their hearts, they quickly marry and set off overland for Oregon. Yet faced with a rigorous six-month journey never before faced by a white woman, will their vision of a mission ... their marriage ... will they survive?

    As a huge fan of the old Oregon Trail computer game and women's history in the American West altogether, I devoured this book. I couldn't wait to find out what would happen around the next bend in the trail!

    Periodically I would wonder just how realistic it really was to marry someone after only a few brief discussions and travel across a continent to begin something new, knowing just how unlikely it would be to ever return, and yet I knew that women were forced to make these difficult decisions; still, I was shocked when I read the author's note at the end and found that this book was based upon the very true story of Marcus and Narcissa Whitman! Not only did Hedlund's characters seem real, but they were. Their trials, tribulations, and victories were true, and yet I never felt as if I was reading from a history text.

    I loved Hedlund's tapestry of fiction, truth, and history. I can't wait to read more!

    I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review.
  4. Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    The Doctor's Lady
    October 18, 2011
    Kimberly
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    After disliking Jody's first book, The Preacher's Bride, I was pleasantly surprised by Jody's second book, The Doctor's Lady, and I enjoyed reading it very much. Jody's story is based on a real-life missionary couple, Marcus and Narcissa Whitman, who traveled to Oregon Country to begin a mission to the Native Americans. Narcissa and her companion Eliza were the first white women to cross the Continental Divide, paving the way for all the women who would follow later along the Oregon Trail.

    The setting of Eli and Priscilla's journey west to Oregon Country, the perils they faced along the way, the secrets they tried to keep from each other and others traveling along with them, and the characters of Priscilla and Eli all combined into a fabulous story. Priscilla thinks of herself as selfish and spoiled, but doesn't see her own strength and will power to finish what she started. Eli's gentleness and compassion appealed to me, though his pride was a bit overbearing. The story's pacing was great, and kept me up late at night, since I had to know what would happen to Priscilla and Eli next. I was happy that Jody separated fact from fiction in her Author's Note at the end of the story, and mentioned Narcissa's journal. I would like to read it next.

    With thanks to Bethany House for my review copy.
  5. Midwest
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Compelling Historical
    October 18, 2011
    Margaret Metz
    Midwest
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    In short -- Jody Hedlund is another new author for me and this book took my breath away.

    The basic things were very well done. She did her research and I felt like I was traveling with Priscilla and Eli as they went through the trials of reaching their new mission field. The author's notes at the end were fascinating as well. I also think the pacing was very good -- none of it seemed to lag or move too quickly. Although faith plays a part in their individual lives and the plot of the story, it doesn't feel like a sermon disguised as a novel either. That's an easy mistake to make. It's feels organic and natural instead of heavy-handed or something that was added in as an afterthought.

    Still, the real fireworks for me were the depth of the characters she created. Both of them evolve and grow as individuals - not just in their relationship to each other. Don't be dismayed though, that delicious romantic tension was providing enough sparks to light a campfire or two ... ;o)

    The writing was great, the story was compelling, the characters were fascinating ... This book is going on the list I use to pick my favorites of the year. I want to thank Bethany House for providing my copy in exchange for my honest review.
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