Friday, October 9, 2009

That Certain Spark

I love me some good historical fiction. Set it in Texas and it's even better. And if it has a medical backdrop, don't even think about interrupting me while I'm reading!

I've enjoyed Cathy Marie Hake's books for several years, and she continues to garner a place of honor on my bookshelves with her latest novel, That Certain Spark. The arrival in Gooding, Texas of twins Enoch and Taylor Bestman, hired long-distance as the town's new veterinarian (Enoch) and physician (Taylor), sets the town in an uproar when they discover that Taylor is a woman. No one is more opposed than Karl Van der Vort, and he's enraged to discover he's at her mercy when he has a serious leg injury at his blacksmith forge and becomes her first patient. When Taylor saves his leg, he wrestles with the conflict between the respect he feels for her skills and his deep conviction that a lady should not be in her profession. Taylor is determined to prove her calling and her merit to the town, and isn't about to let Karl or anyone else stand in her way. Unfortunately, Karl is the one from whom she must obtain transportation when she is called to see patients in the outlying areas, which means they end up spending more time together than either would prefer. When the opposition takes a dangerous turn, Karl must re-evaluate his opinion and his feelings. Meanwhile, Taylor must learn when to be strong and when to lean on others for help.

The many facets of this story add to its charm. The thread of faith and trust in God is woven throughout: in the attempts by Karl to witness to his brother, in the beliefs of Enoch when he's faced with his own challenges, and in the dedication of Taylor to what she views as her calling from God. Cathy Marie Hake has crafted a thoroughly enjoyable story and skillfully balances humorous conversations with tender moments.

Although this is a stand-alone novel, this is the fourth novel set in Gooding, and I enjoyed seeing individuals from her previous books (Fancy Pants, Forevermore, and Whirlwind) appear throughout the story.

Cathy Marie Hake is a registered nurse who worked for many years in an oncology unit before shifting her focus to perinatal care. The author of over twenty novels, she lives with her husband and two children in Anaheim, California. Be sure to visit her website!

You can purchase That Certain Spark directly from the publisher or from Amazon.

A review copy of this book was provided by Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group.


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1 comment:

quilly said...

This sounds great! I just bought three books. couldn't you have posted this yesterday?! ;)