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Monday, February 16, 2009

Courage to Care by Sylvia Rochester

Courage to Care by Sylvia Rochester
Publisher: Wings ePress
Genre: Historical; Paranormal
Length: Full (294 pages)
Heat: Sweet
Rating: 3.5 books
Reviewed by Camellia

In l890, the country isn’t ready for a woman doctor, but don’t tell that to Rachel Moore. Shunned by male patients at her home in the Cascades and later denied employment by Charity Hospital in New Orleans, she holds firm in her conviction that she can make a difference.

While volunteering her services to an orphanage in the French Quarter, terrifying dreams and visions warn of danger. Husband, Gabe, tries to calm her fears, suggesting the city, steeped in the occult, has fueled her fantasies. But the premonitions are more deeply rooted than either suspect.

Tragedy strikes. Haunted by an evil presence, Rachel returns home to search for answers. Can she put the pieces of her life together? Will she ever again find the courage to care?

Against the backdrop of New York, Chicago, Washington state, and New Orleans during the 1890’s, Dr. Rachel Wilson, who has visions, and her husband Gabe set about to make their mark on the world. In Chicago, Dr. Nicolas Behrans becomes a welcomed part of their lives. Courage to Care touches on the mores and cultures of the times in each of the areas where Rachel, Gabe, and Dr. Behrans live and work trying to alleviate some of the suffering and to right some of the wrongs in the society at that time.

The love and support of family is a strong theme throughout. Some of the telling of mundane events with family and friends slow the story down but they do show the love shared. Humor brings relief to some of the serious issues that Sylvia Rochester weaves into this story of love. I longed for some of the issues to be developed more and for a little more research in a few areas such as the kind of ponies suitable for little girls.

I enjoyed the recurring theme of working to make the world a better place for everyone, not just for the elite of society. Also, Rachel’s visions add a sense of impending danger that made me want to warn the characters to WATCH OUT, pay attention to what is going on around you! Courage to Care has many interesting characters that catch the attention of the reader.