The Doctor's Lady
by Jody Hedlund
This book kind of kept me guessing throughout. Two people have such great plans to help people in undeveloped territories, but they want to go to different areas of the world and for completely different reasons. When Doctor Ernest shows up on a Sunday morning, where Priscilla is attending Church, with two young 'savages', the entire membership is frightened. After stating his plans, Dr Ernest and Priscilla find themselves headed toward the first of many arguments.
Priscilla can't have children due to a bad case of the mumps, so the family decides to keep it a secret between her, her parents and her doctor, Dr Baldwin. She decides never to marry and has turned down an engagement before deciding to do Christian missionary work in India. Dr Ernest wants to go to Oregon country and do mission work to teach Nez Perce natives better medical care and a better lifestyle. Priscilla has applied with the mission board and is awaiting permission to go, as Dr Ernest is getting things ready to go west as he waits for permission also. When Priscilla's letter arrives her Mother, not knowing the letter says that Priscilla will not be allowed to go to India because she isn't married, reads it aloud in front of the whole Church congregation. Dr Baldwin tries to convince Dr Ernest to marry Priscilla and take her with him, knowing but not telling him that the Mission Board has decided that he must also be married to do mission work in Oregon. He explains about Priscilla's medical problems, without Priscilla or her family's permission in hopes that it will convince him to marry her, but he refuses and leaves town.
Dr Ernest has found out he has to be married but can't find a wife, so he returns to Angelica, NY to beg Priscilla to marry him. After some arguing, she finally agrees to marry him as a business arrangement. The wedding takes place quickly and they are off, disliking each other, it makes for a long journey full of lots of bad luck. During their travels, Priscilla comes to love the two 'savages' but is still deathly afraid of other natives they meet along the way. You'll never guess who else they have to travel with, this even adds more intrigue to the trip.
I found the book interesting and I kept changing my mind about what was going to happen. It took lots of faith and strength to make this journey that is base on a true story. The "real" Priscilla and the other lady in their group are the first white women to cross The Continental Divide and travel to the far west.
I won this book from Overcoming Through Time and was not required to do a review.