As we look back we think of these early days as gentler times, but the author has captured the essence of the characters and the hardships they accepted as the norm. We see the young heroine, who virtually becomes the mother of her siblings, grow into a spiritually mature woman.
But like us she also battles her doubts and fears when things go from bad to worse. How could God allow these troubles to happen when we're trusting Him? This age-old question is answered beautifully in Mary's life, in that of her father, and especially her sweetheart.
I'm not going into the details of the story except to say it begins on the historical Oregon Trail when settlers longing for a better life faced odds we can barely comprehend today.
I confess many times this true-to-life story brought tears to my eyes, besides its touches of natural humour. It also made me thankful for the modern conveniences we take for granted every day of our lives. Just imagine no corner store. No fridge or freezer. No washing machine. No local pharmacy. And no telephones! Oh yes, Lena reminds us just how strong her characters really are despite their human failings!
This book is the second in the McKenna's Daughters series. See www.lenanelsondooley.com
Maggie's Journey, Charisma House/Realms, October 2011
Mary's Blessing, Charisma House/Realms, May 2012
Catherine's Pursuit - Charisma House/Realms, January 2013