I just finished a book from Tyndale Publishing House that I loved. I felt drawn to request Skip Rock Shallows by Jan Watson because it takes place in the mountains of Kentucky in a coal mining camp. I couldn’t help but think of my father and grandparents and the stories that granny told us of life in the mountains.
Newly graduated from medical school, Dr. Lilly Corbett returns to the mountains of Kentucky to complete her internship before joining her fiancé, Paul, who is completing his residency in Boston. Her life is all planned out. She discovers however that her heart is not aligned with her head. She is drawn to these people. She earns their respect and she questions her decision to leave Skip Rock at the end of her internship. These people need her and she needs them. While struggling to establish herself as the coal camp doctor, she “crosses path with a handsome miner-one who seems oddly familiar.”
I loved this book. Perhaps I loved it because, while reading it, I kept picturing my grandmother. My grandfather was a coal miner and my daddy was born in a coal camp. Though I loved the writing, I was a bit frustrated trying to figure out the exact time period. But my frustration didn’t prevent me from enjoy the different characters. For me this wasn’t so much a romance or love story (though there is romance and love) but more a story about a young woman examining her own heart and reaching for a future that includes her dreams rather than following the wishes of those around her.
Lily comes to understand who she is and what she wants. Her past and her future collide with the mysterious handsome coal miner. The past finds closure and Lily sees the future with more mature eyes as she realizes that she must follow her heart and remain with the people who have come to mean so much to her. I rarely cry while reading a book. This book brought me to tears. I highly recommend this book to those who love historical fiction but I especially recommend this book to anyone who has ties to the mountains of Kentucky. Jan Watson captures the spirit of the people.
Disclosure: I received a FREE copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers.