A Summer Wedding For the Cornish Midwife – Jo Bartlett

Oh what a treat – the chance to be reunited with some old familiar characters from ‘The Cornish Midwife’ whilst meeting some new friends, this time around.

I found it incredibly easy to get caught up in the excitement of midwife Anna’s wedding to the lovely Brae, such was the enthusiasm with which this instalment of the Cornish Midwife’ series began. I did however feel overwhelmed with sadness at the thought of how close Anna has been to her parents, and the fact that they were no longer with her. I loved her romantic notion of regaining a family, once married, yet conversely felt such sadness that her Mum was not there to help her choose a wedding dress. The author could have hardly chosen a more poignant life snapshot in time.

I was completely shocked at the hint of tragedy at the beginning of the book, having earlier become totally engaged by the beautifully narrated characters I had already met in that first chapter. Such was my engagement in this story at such an early stage, I found myself ‘cheating’ by reading the ‘about’ of the book on an online store! I was starting to read this book late at night and found myself ‘having’ to stay up even later, until I could find out for certain whether or not tragedy had been averted.

The author deals with the subject of struggling to conceive, especially for a midwife and later on in life, in an incredibly sympathetic manner and I defy anyone, particularly any woman or mother to not be moved by the concept. The topic was broached in such a manner that I myself felt nothing but empathy, knowing that whilst this was a novel, the subject is all to real (apart from the being a midwife part) for so very many women. All credit to Jo Bartlett for approaching what is an incredibly emotive subject in such a truly benevolent manner.

I was shocked yet entirely sympathetic to Jess’s story and again felt that her tale had been dealt with in such a way that completely endeared her to me. I felt terrible that she felt ashamed that her marriage had collapsed after such a short period of time, despite the fact that her Husband had walked out on her. I would anticipate her story giving real hope to those that might want to foster children. In fact hope and despair are common threads of more than one of the characters in the book, and one just hopes that their sensitive portrayal in this tone, might breed optimism for those in a similar situation in real life.

Fertility testing was broached in an empathetic way. Nobody can surely understand the trauma of going through it and anticipating results, if they have not been through it themselves? Equally those who do not know what to expect, must garner comfort from reading such frank, honest depictions of the process and peoples’ experiences.

I was in awe of the portrayal of the mutual adoration between Anna and Brae, the pinnacle being when they buy the perfect gifts for each other after a small lottery win. It made me feel so happy let alone them!

When Anna and Brae’s wedding was under threat, my heart just leaped at the outpouring of love from friends and family and the overwhelming sense of community, with just one common purpose. I absolutely loved the sense of karma created by the author, with seemingly every person that Anna had ever helped, wanting to return that assistance in some way, from catering and table centrepieces to venues and cakes. A true testament to the fact that people do not forget receiving help in their time of need, and will go above and beyond, once given the opportunity to repay that assistance in any way.

The event and the nature of the help offered instilled in me a genuine sense of pride and well being that would be nigh on impossible to surpass. A genuine coming together of like minded people with one shared purpose. What a genuine display of affection for a bona fide well loved, palpably nice couple who would do anything to help anyone and full marks to the author for having the imagination to create the event in its joyous glory, and to deliver such feelings of unadulterated joy and pleasure to the reader.

One final bit of wonderful nostalgia brought this over emotional reader to tears, when Brae’s Mother’s Pearl earring made an appearance. What a marvellous extra touch from Jo Bartlett. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and loved the descriptions of the locale and the portrayal of the characters. I would just ask one thing of the author though – to please hurry up with the next book in the series as I find myself desperate to know what the future has in store for Brae and Anna and for Ella and Dan. Secondly, I would like to thank the author for the pleasure that this book has brought to me from start to finish; a thoroughly enjoyable read.

To pick up a copy for yourself, just use this link: https://amzn.to/3gPXvj1

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