Jonah’s Daughter

24 May 2013

Jonah’s Daughter
by M.C. Conacher
Published by Benchmark Press
Review by Regine Haensel
$16.95 ISBN 978-1-927352-02-1
     Jonah’s Daughter is M.C. Conacher’s third published book, and is dedicated to the twelve other nurses who graduated with her from nurses’ training in Prince Albert in 1950.

     The novel tells the story of Sedelia Lawson, “fifth and last child of Jonah and Margaret Lawson,” born during the Depression.  There are many details about family life in rural Saskatchewan in the 1940’s and 50’s, and about Sedelia’s brothers and sisters. The major part of the book deals with Sedelia’s training as a nurse at the Protestant Hospital in Prince Albert.  A happy, go-lucky girl, Sedelia likes the training and the work.  She goes out with young men in her spare time and enjoys life.

     One evening, a planned date goes wrong for Sedelia, so on a whim she agrees to go to a gospel church with a couple of other nurses in training.  Marie and Dorothy are not Sedelia’s best friends by any stretch of the imagination.  Both of them plan to become missionaries, which Sedelia finds hard to comprehend.  However, Sedelia is mesmerized by the speaker that evening, Duncan McBain, a handsome young man with green eyes.  She meets him again when he comes as a visitor to a patient in the hospital. Eventually the two go out, and Sedelia begins to rethink her life, to find more space for religion in it.  Soon, she is sure that she loves Duncan. Does the course of true love run smooth? You’ll have to read the book to find out.

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