Friday, August 8, 2014

Woman of Courage - A Book Review

I am the type of person who finishes almost every single book I start. I've given myself permission over the past year or so to not force myself to finish reading books that I don't like. Unfortunately for Barbour Publishing, Woman of Courage is a book that I just could not finish.

Woman of Courage is Wanda E. Brunstetter's newest novel. The premise is interesting. A Quaker woman decides that she is going to move to the Wild, Wild West to minister to the Nez Perce Indians. On her trip out west, everything goes wrong. Will she reach the mission outpost and begin her ministry or will she find a ministry in witnessing to a "trapper and his intriguing half-Indian friend [who] want nothing to do with Christians" (back cover).

I tried to like it. Truly I did. Maybe there is a fantastic story here but I could not get past the writing style. The final sentences in each chapter drove me crazy and often made me roll my eyes.

Several examples:

"As clearly as the full moon beamed through the parlor window, she knew she would never fall in love again" (prologue).
"What she didn't know was how she would go on without him" (chapter 1)."
"If he didn't get help soon, she could die" (chapter 7).
"Did she dare ask?" (chapter 10).
"Amanda hoped that was the case, because there was no way she could help Mary deliver her baby!" (chapter 13).

And a couple of award-winning lines:
"Wa-a-a! Wa-a-a! Wa-a-a!" (baby crying)
"Woof! Woof!" (dog barking)
"What was more, it was a comfort to have Thunder along, because Jim knew the dog would alert him to any danger that might be out there, lurking, because in the wilderness most anything could happen" (pg 159).

Brunstetter's book has another of my pet peeves, which is to use the title of the book several times in the story itself. I won't quote any of the lines because they could be considered spoilers, but nothing yanks me out of a story as fast as running across the title in the dialog.

I'm not sure that I would label this a "bad book" but it's definitely not to my taste. Hopefully someone else can enjoy it!

Many thanks to Barbour Publishing and Handlebar for a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinions. All thoughts are my own!

1 comment:

Julie Fukuda said...

When I was book-hunting at Powells Books in Portland last summer, I picked up two of her books. (about quilting stories) but when asked if I would recommend them for the book club, I said no. I agree with you about her style and the plot was just a bit too simplistic to be real.