About the book: Jilted by her fiancé in 1837, Amanda Pearson gives up on romance and turns to her Quaker faith for reassurance. She becomes determined to follow the Rev. and Mrs. Spalding three thousand miles into the western wilderness to minister to the Nez Perce Indians. The trip is fraught with danger, and soon Amanda finds herself recovering from near death in a trapper's cabin. His Indian wife becomes Amanda's first convert, but the trapper and his intriguing half-Indian friend want nothing to do with Christians. Will they still help her reach the mission in the Lapwai Valley?
My thoughts: Wanda Bruestetter brings the reader another story complete with well-drawn characters, good dialogue, descriptive scenes that capture one’s imagination, and strong faith. Beginning slow and gentle, the scene soon moves from adventure to miss-adventure to tragedy upon tragedy. It coils around depth of emotions and rank despair to dependence upon and grace given by an Almighty God.
Amanda and her father, both Quakers, leave their established home and go West. They are heading into unknown Indian territory and their destination is the mission where they hope to minister the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ to the Nez Perce Indians. A mission is already established, and their goal is to bring themselves as additional helpers in the mission’s goal.
At one point, Amanda’s father dies of a heart attack. Soon after, her only guide dies when a storm crashes a tree onto him. Now Amanda is wet, cold, alone, sick, and completely desperate. She relies upon God, her faith is strong, but sometimes her spirit wavers.
Well, the story does end well, but there are more mind-boggling happenings that take place. The West was a hard place. And they were in a hard place in the West.
This story is about the 1837 period when the West was being settled. The Mission in Lapwai Valley, Oregon was a long way from their New York home and its comforts. There were no comforts along the way. The journey was mostly on horseback. They traveled every day – snow, rain, wind, sun. They slept on the ground. It was hard.
Amanda proved to be a woman of courage from the onset of the story – just simply to undertake the journey took a huge measure of courage. But for her to endure, day after day, and not say, “Enough! Enough is Enough!” took a strength of courage that is beyond measure.
A good book to read and one I heartily recommend.
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Of interest.... My regular Chat With Vera readers know that sometimes when reading fiction, I decide to learn a little more about the historical period, the peoples, the location, etc. Well, here is some information on the Nez Perce Indians. I just love to look at the pictures and then revisit the story in my mind with these pictures to flesh out the story. IMAGES General Information Nez Perce Mission in Lapwai Valley Information
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy of Woman of Courage from Handlebar Publishing on behalf of the Wanda Brunstetter and Shiloh Run Press in exchange for my honest review. Opinions expressed are solely my own & I was under no obligation to render a positive review. I received no compensation for this review.