The Mountain Midwife by Laurie Alice Eakes (review by Kristi)

The Mountain Midwife

From Goodreads: For nearly two hundred years, women in Ashley Tolliver’s family have practiced the art of midwifery in their mountain community. Now she wants to take her skills a step further, but attending medical school means abandoning those women to whom she has dedicated her life, the mountains she loves, and the awakening of her heart.

Ashley Tolliver has tended to the women of her small Appalachian community for years. As their midwife, she thinks she has seen it all. Until a young woman gives birth at Ashley’s home and is abducted just as Ashley tries to take the dangerously bleeding mother to the nearest hospital. Now Ashley is on a mission to find the woman and her newborn baby . . . before it’s too late.

Hunter McDermott is on a quest—to track down his birth mother. After receiving more media attention than he could ever want for being in the right place at the right time, he receives a mysterious phone call from a woman claiming to be his mother. Hunter seeks out the aid of the local midwife in the mountain town where the phone call originated—surely she can shed some light on his own family background.

Ashley isn’t prepared for the way Hunter’s entrance into her world affects her heart and her future. He reignites dreams of having her own family that she has long put aside in favor of earning her medical degree and being able to do even more for her community. But is it commitment to her calling or fear of the unknown that keeps her feet firmly planted in the Appalachian soil? Or is it something more—fear of her growing feelings for Hunter—that makes her hesitant to explore the world beyond the mountains?

My review: When I first saw the cover of this book I thought perhaps this was a historical fiction book. Upon reading the back cover, I realized it was a contemporary fiction piece that ties in with a historical fiction series the author has written. The premise of the book sounded interesting with a midwife serving the women of the Appalachia area. I couldn’t wait to start reading this book.

The first chapter pulled me right into the story. Suspense and intrigue along with action surrounded a dramatic birth at the home of the midwife. I couldn’t wait to find out what happened to these characters and the baby. However, after this chapter, the story started to become a rollercoaster ride for me. There were as many ups and downs to this story as the hills the main character traveled doing her job.

I didn’t really care for Ashley and Hunter, the two main characters in the story. I didn’t feel connected to them and this made the story a bit difficult to stay interested in. Ashley was just kind of bland at times and Hunter came across as a spoiled brat. His reaction to the news he had been adopted didn’t seem real to me. I did like Ashley’s friend Heather and was hoping there would be more of her in the story. Her story was more interesting to me than Ashley’s.

The flow and pace of the story were not steady and this bothered me. At times, I was interested in the story and it was being told at a good pace and flowed easily from chapter to chapter and then would just kind of stall. I then found it way to easy to put down and hard to pick back up. I feel as if a bit more editing would have fixed the issue.

This is a story of romance and suspense and I did enjoy the way the author handled both aspects without the book being overly romantic or overly suspenseful. One definitely couldn’t say it was a romance with suspense tossed in or vice versa. The balance of romance and suspense was perfect.

This story wasn’t horrible by any means but just wasn’t my idea of a perfect read. It did have good elements along with ones I wasn’t so fond of. I think this would be a good book for those looking for a combination of romance and suspense.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion which I have given.

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