4 February 2014

Review: When Courage Calls by Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan

A Modern Christian Classic

My love for Christian fiction was inspired by Frank Peretti, Michael Phillips and Janette Oke. I think I’ve read every book Janette Oke has ever published. She effectively created Christian prairie fiction with the Love Comes Softly
series. She introduced me to Canada and inspired an enduring respect for the hardworking settlers and the Mounties with When Calls the Heart (and twenty years later, I think I'm still a little in love with Wynn).

Where Courage Calls
is co-authored by Janette and her daughter, Laurel Oke Logan, and it’s just as good as the early books. It features Beth Thatcher, a young relative of Elizabeth (from When Calls the Heart), and Beth is following her aunt’s footsteps by leaving the security of her well-to-do Toronto home to take a job teaching in the West—Coal Valley, a mining town, in the 1920’s.

When Calls the Heart is not a romance (although there are romantic elements). It’s the story of a young woman from a privileged upbringing who finds herself serving in a small town with no conveniences (no shops—not even indoor plumbing). As When Calls the Heart progresses, Beth is challenged by people and circumstances, and learns to rely on God for guidance in times of difficulty. It’s reminiscent of the story of Elizabeth Thatcher, but it’s also entirely Beth’s own story as we watch her struggle, cope and mature (and I do hope there is a sequel).

Recommended for all Janette Oke fans. If you’ve read and enjoyed the When Calls the Heart books, you’ll enjoy this. It is a standalone novel, as there are only passing references to the earlier books and locations, and this is set in a new time and place. So if you haven’t read When Calls the Heart, you can still enjoy Where Courage Calls.

Thanks to Bethany House and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.

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