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on September 22, 2000
This was an excellent book! It begins in Montreal, where Cassandra Dell Winston, the daughter of the skilled specialist Dr. Winston. Her father often brings promising young doctors-in-training to dinner, and the spirited Cassandra has her eye on one or two. Once she meets a certain young doctor, though, all thoughts of the other young men eventually vanish from her mind. Cassandra becomes a little bit frustrated when the doctor doesn't ask her to marry him before he leaves for a short trip. However, what Cassie doesn't know is that he wants to set up a practice in the untamed West, so different from her cushy Montreal. But she vows to follow him anywhere, even to an uncivilized land. At first she dislikes her new home, but after awhile she makes new friends and begins a more personal relationship with God. Cassandra's courage and faith help her through her struggles, and she begins to love the little town in the West.
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on December 7, 1999
I have never read a Janette Oke book that I didn't like, but this one is definitely one of the best! I felt like I was there in the story, and I couldn't put it down! I laughed and cried right along with Cassie as she went through many stages of life. this is an excellent book, I highly recommend it!
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on January 16, 2001
I believe this book could have been better. The story line was very good. However, I believe the author, Jeanette Oke, rushed through many of the situations in Cassandra's life (main character). She fit this wonderful fictional characters life in only 222 pages! I didn't feel a part of her life. The beginning was excellent and descriptive. As the book hits the midpoint, I felt rushed and unsatisfied. This makes me leary to read another book by Jeannette Oke.
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on June 16, 2011
3 stars go to this book! It wasn't an action/adventure book, or one that scares you silly, but it was a really nice book about an elder lady reminiscing her life. After I had finished the last page, I tried to find a word that would sum up my overall thoughts of the book, and the word "Sweet" came to mind. That pretty much sums up my thoughts on it: it was a very sweet book that made me ponder many things.

The story begins with Cassandra sitting on her front porch, when she begins to think back to when she first met her husband. That was the first time I read a book with that kind of set up - an elderly person recapping their life - but it was a nice change from the books that I usually read.

It was a bit slow in places and sometimes it was confusing as her children grew up, married, and had kids of their own - I got confused with all the new names that kept popping into the picture! But besides these few parts, I really enjoyed the story and getting to know the characters. I loved to watch the change in Cassandra as she adjusted to her new life out West. And the story of her conversion was touching! That was probably my favorite part in the book: you could see the total transformation in her character! To sum it up, I really enjoyed reading this book by Janette Oke!

Thanks to Bethany House for giving me a review copy of this book!
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on March 4, 2005
I have read many books by Janette Oke. This was the best. I am now reading it for the third time in a row. Before I read it, I took having a good life for granted. After I read it, I realized how lucky I am. Janette Oke has really inspired me with this book. If you have not read this heartwarming story, you really have missed out and need to read it.
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"They Called Her Mrs. Doc" is a Christian historical set in the Canadian West during the pioneer time period. It's a part of the Women of the West series, but the books aren't connected to each other so you can read them in any order. These novels are quick reads.

The setting and historical detail created a nice yet still somewhat vague (as to exact time period) backdrop for the events. The story followed Cassandra's life from seventeen-years-old until she's very old, so we get more of an overview of her life than a good look at her during one period of her life. Her early struggle was to adjust to living in an "uncivilized" town where she didn't know anyone or fit in. Then she had to learn to sometimes help her husband and the townspeople (when her husband wasn't available) medically despite the fact she gets nauseous at the sight of blood.

The Christian element was woven in as a natural part of the story, and it wasn't a big part of the story. Cassandra realizes that she knows about God but doesn't know God on a personal basis, so she decides to change that and then let Him change her attitude about her circumstances.

Married sex was implied (as babies were born). There was a very minor amount of "he cussed" style of bad language. Overall, I'd recommend this enjoyable novel.
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on October 17, 2007
I read this book when I was around 15 for the first time and it was one of my favorite books. I remember I was incredibly sad that the book ended; I just wanted it to keep going forever.

I am now about ten years removed from then and decided to re-read this much beloved book. This time I was really disappointed. It was a lot shorter than I remember and the characters were incredibly two-dimensional. I didn't feel like I really got to know the main character, Cassandra, on a level more than a detailed obituary. Her husband and children were even less detailed.

I think I loved the book the first time so much because it took me longer to read and I thought about the characters a lot so I must have made made up my own character details. But reading what was just given this time, there was nothing about this book I really enjoyed and was disappointed that ended because I felt like I never really got to know anyone.

I recommend this book to younger readers, maybe they'll have the time to add in with their imagination what the author left out.
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on January 14, 2014
Thank you so much. I have found through reading this book that I.. just as Cassandra... knew about God ... but I really did not know him personally... now I do .. keep up the good news for God
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VINE VOICEon August 13, 2010
This book was at best excellent and at worst ok. It is one of the books in the Woman of the West series by Janette Oke.

We are introduced to the main character Cassandra, who is better known as Cassie while she is younger. The first chapter actually is of her when she is much older, contemplating a move to the city that her children are insisting on. She however, wants to stay at the home she's lived in most of her life.

After that it takes us to a seventeen year old Cassie who is just starting to think about men for the first time. She is surrounded by young doctors to be thanks to her father who is a doctor and professor to prospective doctors. While initially her interests lay with an older man, she soon find a soul mate in the charming Samuel Smith. The agree to marry, but then she finds out that his biggest desire is to move back West to bring medicine to his hometown where there are no doctors. Cassie, a spoiled Eastern girl, loves him enough to go with him, but secretly wishes that he'll change his mind and move back East.

The rest of the book follows their life together and that of their children. While the first part of the book follows a very slow timeline, with the birth of their first child, the book starts jumping all over the place with occasional longer chapters having some sort of story involving the family to them. These stories include visits to the East, the children's professional choices and marriage, and different medical procedures done by Samuel and sometimes Cassandra.

As far as a struggle in the novel, the only hardship the book seems to have is Cassandra's struggle with staying in the West. But even that hardship is gone midway through the book. Otherwise, in this novel, there really is no plotline, its just the story of a woman.

Oke's characters in this are also very believable. Cassandra starts out as being very headstrong and biased. Over the novel she grows and even learns to accept others for who they are. She also even overcomes her aversion to blood and most things medical, becoming known as Mrs Doc for her skills in healing small childhood mishaps and injuries of the children's pets.

Like most of Oke's novels, the writing is very soft and unoffensive. She gives a lot of detail and paints a picture on what life was like in her different time periods. Although no time frame was given for this novel, it is easy to see it starts in the early 1900's and continues from there.

Since Oke is a Christian writer I will relate a little bit of how that is expressed in this book. For the most part she shows the Christian attitude through the growth of the character Cassandra. It shows how she deals with her struggles and thoughts. I wouldn't call the book preachy at all, there is only one section where Oke goes into detail about how to include God into your life during a discussion between Cassandra and a friend. Some might wonder if any non-Christians would enjoy Okes book. I can personally attest to the fact that they will. Myself I find that even a non-Christian is able to appreciate how the characters in Oke's novel accept that they cannot change the world around them, but can strive to be better people themselves. It offers realistic ways of making yourself a better person, regardless if you include the religion or not.

Not only that, but the stories in general are wonderful for any audience. They offer calm, peaceful relaxation in reading. My only complaint for Mrs. Doc would be the jumping around in time. I would have liked to see the book flow a bit better and include more information at each time frame in the book. Or jump a set number of years instead of one here, five there, two there.

They Called Her Mrs. Doc
Copyright 1992
222 pages
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on August 5, 2013
My great grandfather was a frontier doc during the building of the Union Pacific route west. This may have been what it was like for them.
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