The Midwife’s Tale by Delia Parr

Book description:

Martha Cade comes from a long line of midwives who have served the families of Trinity, Pennsylvania, for generations. A widow with two grown children, she’s hopeful that her daughter will follow in her footsteps, but when Victoria runs off, Martha’s world is shattered.

Worse, a new doctor has arrived in town, threatening her job, and she can’t remember a time when her faith has been tested more. Still determined to do the work she knows God intended for her, Martha is unprepared for all that waits ahead. Whether it’s trying to stop a town scandal, mending broken relationships, or feeling the first whispers of an unexpected romance, she faces every trial and every opportunity with hope and faith.

My review:

I was really excited to read this book after I saw the quote from the back that stated “Fans of Jan Karon’s Mitford series should love Parr’s work” by the Philadelphia Inquirer.  I absolutely loved the Mitford series and devoured every book.

I have to admit that the first third of this book left me questioning that remark.  I kept saying to myself, “There is nothing similar to this and the Mitford novels,” and I wasn’t sure that I could make it through.  I even stopped reading it to read a couple of other books, hoping that I could pick it up with fresh eyes and become engaged in Martha’s story.

For me, the story really began when Martha encountered “Boy”.  From that point on, I read because I wanted to find out what happened.  As other characters were included into the storyline and the townsfolk began to interact more, I began to see the Mitford charm seeping into the pages of Parr’s novel.  Readers just have to be very patient for the storyline to unfold.

I kept reading, looking for clues of the “unexpected romance” promised on the back cover.  Unfortunately, I never really encountered an “unexpected romance”.  I did, however, encounter a rather predictable romance.  That is not to say that it is terrible, but when I read “unexpected romance”, I expected something completely out of the blue to happen.  There were a couple of surprises in the book, just not in the romantic sphere.

I will probably give the next book in this series a shot, if only to find out what happens to Martha and if she is reconciled with her daughter.

Overall, this is an okay book.  I’m not super excited about the characters or the plot, but there isn’t anything horrible about it either.  If you are looking for a light summer read, you might give this one a try.  If you loved the Mitford series as much as I did, you might love this one.  Just be aware that the story takes awhile to develop.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.

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