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52 Books in 52 Weeks: The Canadian West Series by Janette Oke

Welcome to week 27 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks [1]” series!  If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up [1]!

This week I actually re-read 4 books I had read earlier (as a teen).  One of them was (and at the time of this writing is) available for free on Amazon to download:

When Calls the Heart (Canadian West Book #1) [2] (as of 8/11 free to download)

When Comes the Spring (Canadian West #2) [3]

When Breaks the Dawn (Canadian West #3) [4]

When Hope Springs New (Canadian West #4) [5]

It turns out there is also a 5th book in the series: Beyond the Gathering Storm (Canadian West #5) [6] but it seems to  be different characters and since I don’t own it, I haven’t read it.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Janette Oke during the 80s and 90s she was a powerhouse in Christian fiction writing.  Writing historical romantic fiction she easily pulls her (mostly female) readers into whatever world she chooses.  Oke is Canadian and this series is set in the Canadian Northwest.

The series chronicles the journey of Elizabeth,  a well-bred teacher from Toronto.  Quite comfortable in her life she has no expectations beyond teaching, marrying and settling herself into society life in Toronto.  These plans are interrupted when she receives a letter from her older brother Jonathan who is living out West.  Their area is desperately in need of teachers and he immediately thought of Elizabeth.  Through prayer and tears she decides to accept a post with the anticipation of living well and enjoying the company of her brother and his family.

Upon arrival she discovers that the school superintendent has set his sites on marrying her with no intention of her teaching.  After refusing his insanely ridiculous proposal he promptly assigns her to a poor school district hours from her family and in an area with little money or resources.  In spite of his pettiness she throws herself into her position and discovers the joy that comes from accepting a challenge set before you.

Oh and did I mention she keeps seeing this really good looking Canadian Mountie everywhere?

I don’t want to get too much more into the plot because the books flow from one right into the other but if this sounds like something interesting, you will love the series.  I always find them such a great read- a glimpse into another time and place that is so foreign to us.