Book Review: When Calls the Heart

Birds sang their last songs of the day before tucking in for the night, and still the darkness hung back. Now, I thought, I understand the word “twilight.” It was created for just this time – in this land.”
― Janette Oke When Calls the Heart

About the book…

Elizabeth Thatcher was raised in the privileged East of Canada. When her brother writes asking her to journey westward and become a teacher to children in the wild, she is faced with the decision to make a daring journey into the unknown, or stay home where she has a steady job and loving family.

About the author…

Janette Oke, is the pioneer of modern inspirational fiction, and as of 2016, the author of seventy-five books. Her popular Love Comes Softly Series is beloved worldwide. She grew up in Canada, and resides there now with her husband Edward where they are actively involved with their church.

Some personal thoughts…

Dear fellow friends who have followed Hallmark Channel’s drama series When Calls the Heart… please leave all of the Hope Valley goodness at the door as you read this review. Don’t get me wrong, I love WCTH. Probably one of my favorite TV shows, but the book is both better and very different. Today, let’s talk about the book.

The Canadian West Saga was one of the first historical fiction series I ever read. I was captivated. Since then, I’ve re-read them several times. As a little girl who always wanted to be a teacher, Elizabeth was my favorite character. I use to stack carboard boxes in my bedroom and pretend to teach pioneer children, so reading her interactions with the children in the story, always gives me a warm feeling.

Now let’s talk about the Mountie… oh, Wynn Delaney. He is right up there next to Gilbert Blythe for me when it comes to literary men. Kind, chivalrous, brave, and faithful to God. He is in the three books following this one more, so stay tuned for more talk about his character development.

The history in this book always fascinates me, especially in the first few chapters when Elizabeth is being introduced to the wild west and it’s origins. In high school, this book actually sparked the interest that turned into my end of the year essay on westward expansion in the North. I personally would recommend it as a fun read if you happen to be studying Canadian history or the Northwest Mounted Police in specific.


Things worth mentioning…

In the beginning one of the gentleman treats his female employee very friendly. Nothing inappropriate, just not polite for an employer/employee relationship. It is quickly remedied, and not an issue for more than a chapter.

One character dies, and the funeral is a part of the story.

There is talk about sin and why it displeases God. I personally loved the chapter in which a father explains to his son the need for a Savior and why forgiveness is such a beautiful gift. One of my favorite parts of this book.

It is the beginning of a love story, nothing gushy or extremely romantic. Low key, honorable, and sweet. Just like a good book should be.


Here at The Corner Shelf, you’ll find When Calls the Heart on The Top Shelf. 

4 thoughts on “Book Review: When Calls the Heart

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