Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Author bio: Delia Parr is a pen name for the historical fiction author Mary Lechleidner. Raised in Pennsuken Township, New Jersey, Parr graduated from Rutgers University. She is now a high school teacher who has won many prestigious awards for her historical fiction. She now devotes herself to writing inspirational historical romance.
My thoughts: The Midwife’s Dilemma is the third in the “At Home in Trinity” series. This is my first time reading Delia Parr, so obviously I did not read the two previous novels set in Trinity, which did put me at a slight disadvantage.
The story starts in June of 1831 with the main character of Martha Cade, a seasoned midwife. She is approximately 40 years old, but I couldn’t help but picture her as older. This would be appropriate to the time period. Martha is nearing the end of her career. Physically, mentally and even spiritually she feels like the time has come to slow down the arduous pace of taking care of the women and children of Trinity, but she will not leave the profession until she finds the right woman to take over her practice. In the beginning, she has lost her beloved horse, the bird she has been healing is close to the point where she will have to release him to nature, her relationship with her daughter is distant, she barely sees her grown son who lives hundreds of miles away and her best friends and her beau have been gone on a trip for months longer than planned and a new doctor in town has taken away some of her patients. Martha seems alone, lonely and lost in the first part of this book.
Throughout the rest of the novel, bit by bit and piece by piece, Martha’s life comes together on all sides. The town of Trinity grows in color and character. Her friends and beau return. New friends come into her life. A mysterious gift shows up at her back door. Big changes happen in her daughter and son’s lives. Everything around Martha is blooming. Her big dilemma surrounds her beau – but I don’t want to ruin the ending!
The first 1/3 of the book I kept thinking I really should have read the first two of the series first – but as the characters and the town worked their way into my heart, I realize d that this book is also excellent as a stand alone (This doesn’t mean, however, that I won’t be reading her the first two in the series, because I plan to!)
If you like inspirational Christian historical fiction, definitely pick up this book. I look forward to reading much more by Delia Parr!
*This book was provided for review by Bethany House Publishers for my honest review*