Will bring joy to your heart: "The Crooked Path" By Irma Joubert
From a young age, Lettie has felt like she doesn't measure up to those around her. Though she finds some success in her life by becoming a doctor, she is convinced that when it comes to matters of the heart, that romance is always going to pass her by. Marco is a survivor of the horrors of World War II, barely making it through the war with his life intact. When Marco moves to South Africa for the benefits of the temperate climate for his fragile health, he becomes Lettie's first patient after she returns home to the bushveld to join her father's practice. As their lives become ever more entwined, Lettie and Marco discover a joy and love they did not suspect was possible.
Irma Joubert has so succeeded at bringing history to life that at times I felt like I was stepping into the pages of a memoir rather than delving into a fiction book. From page one, I was captivated by the character of Lettie, resonating with her lack of confidence in who God made her to be and yet admiring her determination to continue down the path set before her. And Marco stands out as the very definition of a man, putting his own needs and desires aside to care for others. Walking alongside both Lettie and Marco, both in their individual stories and then once their paths crossed, was an emotional journey indeed, with loss and pain but joy and life at the same time. Joubert writes with a sure hand and with pacing that held my interest from start to finish. I should mention that my wife felt that some of the pacing in the book was odd in the choices that the author made in terms of which parts of their life to speed through and which parts to focus in on. But that wasn't my experience, and so I encourage you to read the book and decide for yourself. I loved seeing once again the characters I grew to care about in Joubert's prior book, The Child of the River, and I was torn between deciding whether I liked this book or that one better. In the end, it doesn't really matter as both are excellent reads!
I strongly recommend "The Crooked Path" and award it a solid 4 out of 5 stars.
Book has been provided courtesy of the Booklook Bloggers review program. Available from your favorite book retailer from Thomas Nelson, a division of HarperCollins.