The Midwife of Hope RiverPatricia Harman
1 February 2013
Published by Corvus
5 September 2012
Published by Corvus
As a midwife working in rural poverty during the Depression, Patience Murphy’s only solace is her gift: the chance to escort mothers through the challenges of childbirth. Just beginning, she takes on the jobs no one else wants: those most in need-and least likely to pay. Patience is willing to do what it takes to fulfil her mentor’s wishes, but starting a midwife practice means gaining trust, and Patience’s secrets won’t allow her to let anyone in.
The Midwife of Hope River beats with authenticity as Patience faces seemingly insurmountable conditions: disease, poverty, and prejudices threaten at every turn. From the dangerous mines of West Virginia to the terrifying attentions of the Ku Klux Klan, Patience must strive to bring new light, and life, into an otherwise cruel world.
From start to satisfying conclusion, it is a beautifully imagined novel, a marvel of a debut, rich with fully realized characters and events. This is one I'll read again, more slowly next time.
Johanna Moran, author of The Wives of Henry Oades
The Midwife of Hope River is a rich and deeply moving book that will pleasantly linger in your thoughts long after you've finished reading it. Patricia Harman has created such a striking and original heroine that pregnant women everywhere will be wanting Patience Murphy to deliver their babies.
Theresa Brown, author of Critical Care: A New Nurse Faces Death, Life and Everything in Between, and New York Times Opinion Columnist
I learned, I laughed, I cried, but most of all I was deeply impressed by the artistry of the midwife and her central role in women's lives prior to the advent of commercialized, institutionalized medicine. This novel will live in my heart for years to come.
Amy Hill Hearth, author of Miss Dreamsville and the Collier County Women's Literary Society: A Novel