Undaunted Hope

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Undaunted Hope by Jody Hedlund is a historical fiction book set in 1857, focusing on Tessa Taylor, a young woman who moves to East Harbor, Michigan, to become the new schoolteacher to miner’s children. (The book is part of the Beacons of Hope series, which includes a book I previously reviewed, Hearts Made Whole.) Tessa soon learns that the town had been hoping for a male teacher – and as she works hard to prove herself, Tessa also finds that she is the object of affection of a few different men in town, including the charming assistant lightkeeper, Alex Bjorklund. But admist the hope of love, danger may lie ahead…

I really like the “1800s schoolteacher moves to a new town” premise, which is an intriguing theme I have seen in other historical fiction novels (since it’s something that occurred in history!), including Janette Oke’s When Calls the Heart series (in which the new teacher also taught children of miners). Hedlund’s story is original and relatable, and it was interesting to see Tessa enter this new environment, as she demonstrates her perseverance and bravery. I liked the 1857 coastal Michigan setting of the book, as Hedlund explores relevant issues including courtship, gender roles, and the age-old system of blackmail.

You can read more about Undaunted Hope here.

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