Book Reviews

Four Must-Read Books About Inspiring Women Who Faced Unprecedented Obstacles

Four Must-Read Books About Inspiring Women Who Faced Unprecedented Obstacles With Strength and Resilience

Since I’m often on the look out for quality books I’ve decided to share my personal favorites through book reviews here on my blog. It seemed a good place to start with women who created their own fruitful journeys against all odds. I love a satisfying true-story and these books did not disappoint. Resolute, extraordinary, unrelenting, brave: all these describe the women and girls in the following stories. Prepare to be inspired by these must-read books about women and girls who faced unprecedented obstacles with strength and resilience. 

The Queen of Water by Laura Resau and Maria Virginia Farinango

Before a trip to Ecuador I researched books, hoping to find a personal story that would transport me to the heart of the country and it’s people. This was absolutely true about The Queen of Water by Laura Resau and Maria Virginia Farinango. The story follows an indigenous girl of seven who is taken from her large family and small village to live in servitude to a mestizo couple. Unmet promises, abuse, and betrayal do not deter Virginia. Her spirit and humor move her to teach herself to read, write, and perform science experiments in secret. This emotional novel based on a true story shows the impressive resilience of the human spirit.

Doc Susie by Virginia Cornell

Soon after moving to Colorado, a friend introduced me to the true saga of a country physician in the Colorado Rockies. Doc Susie by Virginia Cornell is a story of a former tuberculosis patient who defies harsh conditions, that would tax even a healthy mountaineer, in order to reach critically ill patients in the snow-covered Rockies. As if becoming a woman physician in 1897 wasn’t enough, Doc Susie stubbornly brought medical care to a region where many were previously consigned to early graves. A stirring adventure and motivating journey of devotion and love to those in need with no thought of self-importance.

The Girl With No Name by Marina Chapman

Browsing the “current” shelf at a library book sale in Sarasota, I stumbled on The Girl With No Name by Marina Chapman. This story reads like a novel but is the true story of a girl, stolen from her home at four years of age, who finds herself abandoned deep in the Columbian jungle. She comes upon a troop of capuchin monkeys and miraculously survives five years in the jungle by following the monkey ways. She loses her ability to speak and interact as a human. But this is only the beginning of her story. This memoir shows the improbable endurance of the human spirit and the incredible power of perseverance in the face of enormous obstacles.

Gladys Aylward by Janet & Geoff Benge

This biography written for young people, held the attention of myself, my 82 year-old mother and my two young boys (5 & 11). Gladys Alward by Janet & Geoff Benge follows an amazing woman from her flunking out of missionary training school to her self-supported overland trip to China. This story will rewire any preconceived ideas of what a missionary does. Gladys reforms corrupt prisons, stops foot binding, buys children out of slavery and adopts them as her own. Rescuing over 90 children during the Japanese attacks of World War II, this gripping story demonstrates a gripping faith in God in the face of seemingly hopeless circumstances.

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