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Download The Midwife of Hope River: A Novel of an American Midwife Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Midwife of Hope River: A Novel of an American Midwife Audiobook, by Patricia Harman Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (1,430 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Patricia Harman Narrator: Anne Wittman Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Hope River Series Release Date: February 2013 ISBN: 9780062280947
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A remarkable new voice in American fiction creates an uplifting novel that celebrates the miracle of life.

Midwife Patience Murphy has a gift: a talent for escorting mothers through the challenges of bringing children into the world. Working in the hardscrabble conditions of Appalachia during the Depression, Patience takes the jobs that no one else wants, helping those most in need—and least likely to pay. She knows a successful midwifery practice must be built on a foundation of openness and trust—but the secrets Patience is keeping are far too intimate and fragile for her to ever let anyone in.

An honest, moving, and beautifully detailed piece of Americana, Patricia Harman’s The Midwife of Hope River rings with authenticity as Patience faces nearly insurmountable difficulties: disease, poverty, and prejudices threaten at every turn. From the dangerous mines of West Virginia to the terrifying attentions of the Ku Klux Klan, Patience must strive to bring new light and life into an otherwise cruel world.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “I learned, I laughed, I cried, but most of all I was deeply impressed by the artistry of the midwife and her central role in women’s lives prior to the advent of commercialized, institutionalized medicine. This novel will live in my heart for years to come.”

    Amy Hill Hearth, New York Times bestselling author

  • “A luminous novel of new beginnings, loss, love…and yes, hope! Patricia Harman’s all-too-human stories of birth mingle with the harsh realities of rural life in the 1930s…A thoroughly satisfying read by a talented storyteller.”

    Gay Courter, New York Times bestselling author of The Midwife

  • “Well-written and heartfelt.”

    Boston Globe

  • “[A] frank, absorbing memoir from a midwife at a tiny West Virginia health clinic.”

    Cleveland Plain Dealer

  • “Harman, a certified nurse-midwife who has practiced in many rural communities, clearly has a comprehensive understanding of midwifery…The stories of the births that Patience handles in this difficult era are fascinating.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Memoirist Harman, herself a certified nurse-midwife, takes readers back to hardscrabble times and adds plenty of medical drama and a dash of romance, to offer an uncommonly good piece of American historical fiction.”

    Library Journal

  • “Takes readers back to hardscrabble times and adds plenty of medical drama and a dash of romance.”

    Library Journal

  • “Harman, herself a midwife, transports the reader to another time and place in this quiet story of a white woman who fights to usher life into an impoverished, prejudiced world…The author’s love for the profession shines through in this testament to the power of women. A first novel well worth attention.”

    Booklist

  • “Midwives are warriors in this beautifully sweeping tale.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Will definitely renew your faith in love, loyalty, forgiveness, understanding, and just plain hope.”

    Fran Lewis, author of My Name Is Bertha

  • “As always when writing of birth, the bleakest of times can be transformed by the power and beauty of birth…The moments of joy between new parents and their baby, between the mothers and the midwife, and between the midwife and her young assistant, light up the pages. Amen baby!”

    Penny Armstrong, CNM, author of A Midwife’s Story

  • The Midwife of Hope River…is still on my mind days after finishing. From start to satisfying conclusion, it is a beautifully imagined novel, a marvel of a debut, rich with fully realized characters and events. This is one I’ll read again, more slowly next time.”

    Johanna Moran, author of The Wives of Henry Oades

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Melallie | 2/20/2014

    " Really enjoyed this. The birth stories were interesting but more then anything I enjoyed the history. The main character is a bit annoying and self obsessed and I would've liked some more in depth stories of the other characters. But all in all a great read! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Paige Bennett | 2/19/2014

    " I was not sure of this book at first- seeing as how it was about depression era West Virginia- but once again I was surprised by a book. This book is wonderful- all about life, and hope and family. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura Jenkins | 2/18/2014

    " I really enjoyed this book; not too sappy, interesting scenarios...sorry to see it end! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Anja | 1/28/2014

    " Think my midwifery sisters would really enjoy this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wendy Hall | 1/25/2014

    " Beautiful descriptions of birthing in a rural, mountainous area of West Virginia - the fears, excitement, anxiety, and miracles of bringing new life into the world when giving birth at home, attended by a midwife, and little access to medical care. The author depicted this very well. Then throughout, there was an interesting, engaging plot with the midwife as the central figure. Great character development. Would have enjoyed meeting and getting to know some of these fictional characters. Of course, in some ways I feel I already have! Great historical fiction, as she did a depicted the setting, the time period, and the tensions of that decade. Highly recommend this to someone who thinks they would be interested in a book with this focus (namely, Amy). "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nathalie | 1/23/2014

    " Thoroughly enjoyed this book... read it in a day. I love journal entry style writing and I am fascinated with "mountain folk" since I live so close to them and have seen a few! Could not give this 5 stars because I felt the end wrapped up a little quickly but a great read and definitely in my top 20 favs. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Wyna | 1/21/2014

    " I really enjoyed this book. not quite a 4 star book, but definitely a 3+! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Heather | 1/18/2014

    " Loved it. Favorite book I've read since The Help. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Donna | 1/1/2014

    " Loved loved loved this book!!! Loved the main character & was totally taken in by her personality, her strength, her humanness. Best story I've totally enjoyed in a while. Buy this book & read it!! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jackie Smith | 1/1/2014

    " Absolutely my new favorite book!! Love the connections I had with the birth and death cycles in our lives. This author had some really profound insight into life,death, and moving on with your life even though it may be difficult! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 stella Lee | 12/12/2013

    " Charming and lovely! Loved it and learned a lot of being a midwife, although I did not think I would like it.... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sara | 11/29/2013

    " This was a pretty good book, but I would have enjoyed it more if it was just birth stories back to back. I added her other two books to my to read list "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Katie | 10/9/2013

    " A page turner with interesting, resilient characters that describes the life of a mIdwife in rural West VA during the depression. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wendy | 8/22/2013

    " This was a really engaging story about a small town midwife in the early 20th century. The book was written by a certified nurse midwife, and I'm certain she drew on her personal experiences for this story. A little melodramatic at times, overall, I really enjoyed this interesting book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Christine | 8/15/2013

    " To me, this book was just alright. No, I guess I even thought it was a little corny, but it was still a pleasant read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Trudy | 8/7/2013

    " Beautifully written story of a struggling midwife who practiced in an Appalachian mining town during the Depression era. Eventhough this story is fiction, it is packed full of historical American references and some really amazing birth scenes.I so enjoyed this story and did not want it to end. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dana | 6/18/2013

    " Loved it-- one of the best written books I've read in a while. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tavia | 5/6/2013

    " I enjoyed reading this book, but I just found some parts of it a bit corny and unrealistic. Overall it was a pretty good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tracy | 5/6/2013

    " Not a bad read. Felt a bit issue-driven though. Mini history lesson, with just about every issue of the day tossed in. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Connie | 2/19/2013

    " What a delightful book. I enjoyed reading this tale of the life and experiences of delivering babies in a backwoods area during the depression. Good reading "

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About the Author

Patricia Harman, CNM, got her start as a lay midwife on rural communes and went on to become a nurse-midwife on the faculty of Ohio State University, Case Western Reserve University, and West Virginia University. She is the author of two acclaimed memoirs and a novel, The Midwife of Hope River, which was published to critical acclaim.