Book Review: Something Worth Doing

I’ve never considered myself a feminist. I was raised in a conservative household, and never questioned women’s traditional roles. As an adult, I still believes there’s honor to be found in the domestic arts. But when I married, I kept my maiden name. I’m not a good cook, so my husband does most of our cooking. (I make a mean batch of cookies, though!) When times got tough, my husband looked after our toddler while I became the main breadwinner. All of the above may very well have been considered “deviant” only fifty years ago.

I suppose I’ve never considered myself a feminist, because I never felt the need to fight for my rights. I grew up learning about the Women’s Suffrage movement, but I wasn’t keen on the details. The truth is, I was raised in a world built on the backs of generations that did need to fight. In America’s early pioneering days, women had very few choices beyond a lifetime of birthing and hard work. I remember stories of my great-grandmother boiling laundry with lye in the back field a hundred years ago. We aren’t really so far removed as it seems. We are shaped by the world and circumstances we’re born in.

New York Times bestselling author, Jane Kirkpatrick, reminds us of this message with her historical fiction, Something Worth Doing. I was beyond ecstatic to be chosen to review a copy of this fantastic book, and can’t wait to share my full review with y’all below (plus the giveaway!). Put on your thinking caps, folks, because you’re about to meet an author, and historical figure that will make you take a deeper look into our past, and who we are in the present. But first, let’s talk about Something Worth Doing.

SOMETHING WORTH GIVING

by Jane Kirkpatrick

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction 

Publisher: Revell

Publication Date: September 1, 2020 

Number of Pages: 336

Scroll down for the giveaway!


Synopsis

Some things are worth doing—even when the cost is great 

In 1853, Abigail Scott was a nineteen-year-old schoolteacher in Oregon Territory when she married Ben Duniway. Marriage meant giving up on teaching, but Abigail always believed she was meant to be more than a good wife and mother. When Abigail becomes the primary breadwinner for her growing family, what she sees as a working woman appalls her—and prompts her to devote her life to fighting for the rights of women, including the right to vote. 

Based on a true story, Something Worth Doing will resonate with modern women who still grapple with the pull between career and family, finding their place in the public sphere, and dealing with frustrations and prejudices when competing in male-dominated spaces.

 

CLICK TO PURCHASE

Amazon ┃ Barnes and Noble ┃ Bookshop.org  

Christianbook.com ┃ IndieBound ┃ Revell

goodreads link


PRAISE FOR SOMETHING WORTH DOING:

“I have long admired Jane Kirkpatrick’s rich historical fiction, and Something Worth Doing is well worth reading! Oregonian Abigail Duniway is a vibrant, fiercely passionate, and determined activist who fought for women’s suffrage. Women of today have cause to respect and admire her—as well as the loving, patient, and supportive husband who encouraged her to continue ‘the silent hunt.'” —Francine Rivers, author of Redeeming Love 

 

“On the trail to Oregon, young Jenny Scott lost her beloved mother and little brother and learned that no matter what, she must persist until she reaches her goal. Remembering her mother’s words—’a woman’s life is so hard’—the young woman who became Abigail Scott Duniway came to understand through observation and experience that law and custom favored men. The author brings alive Abigail’s struggles as frontier wife and mother turned newspaper publisher, prolific writer, and activist in her lifelong battle to win the vote and other rights for women in Oregon and beyond. Jane Kirkpatrick’s story of this persistent, passionate, and bold Oregon icon is indeed Something Worth Doing!” —Susan G. Butruille, author of Women’s Voices from the Oregon Trail, now in a 25th anniversary edition

 


Review

5 of 5 Stars

Less than two-hundred years ago, a woman was subject to the whims of her father, brother, or husband. A woman could keep no income she made for herself alone, should her husband choose to take her money. A man could take all of his wife’s property and their child, with no consequence through the law. All of this was commonplace in the same country where wars were fought to secure the freedom of some, but not all. We are taught these things in school, but it never really hit home for me until I read Jane Kirkpatrick’s historical fiction, Something Worth Doing.

I’ve always been drawn to stories of America’s Pioneer days and those families who crossed the wilderness in wagons in search of a better life. Often, at great cost. This same drive is what leads Abigail “Jenny” Scott’s family from their family in Illinois for a new life in Oregon Territory. Jenny Scott’s mother dies on the Oregon Trail before our story begins, yet it’s her mother’s life and death which impacts the young teen in far-reaching ways. Jenny can’t help but see the lack of choice her mother had in their new life and determines to seek better for herself. Despite her frustrations with the men in her life, Jenny falls in love with a good man who loves and sees her as his equal. In a romance novel, this might be the end of the story, a wonderful beginning to a happy marriage. But this isn’t the end of Jenny’s story, just as marriage isn’t the end of a woman’s journey. Life is shaped by marks in the road, like marriage and childbirth, trials and heartache. Until eventually, Jenny Scott puts aside her youthful nickname and sets on her personal journey to discover “Abigail.”

Abigail Scott Duniway is not easy to get along with. She speaks her mind and doesn’t believe in backing down, no matter how frightened or doubtful she may become. Abigail takes all the lessons learned in hers, her sisters’ and mother’s lives, and slowly shares her thoughts with a broader audience. Along her path to finding her voice, Abigail finds herself championing women’s right to vote and basic liberties. She’s gifted by support through a husband who adores her, and sisters who lift her up. Yet the more Abigail seeks to protect her investments and champion the cause of others, the less time she gives back to her family. I both loved and despised Abigail. On the one hand, her courage and determination to push for change make her admirable. Yet as Kirkpatrick takes us through the decades of “Jenny” and Ben’s marriage, I couldn’t help but want to reach through the pages to tell our heroine to not turn away from the abundant love in her life. Having lost a mother and siblings at an early age, it’s understandable that she hardens her heart. But the worst of it all is Abigail is fully aware as she deprives herself of many simple joys.

As much as I came to dislike the main character, I couldn’t help but be drawn deeper into the story and lives of characters who truly lived and breathed. Historical fiction, when penned by a gifted author, has the ability to transport us into the past. But when a novel is meticulously researched and based upon a historical figure, the past comes far more vividly to life. This is what New York Times bestselling author Jane Kirkpatrick has gifted us with Something Worth Doing. A jump into the yesterday, yes, but also a mirror to hold to ourselves today. We are not so far removed from a time when women were granted few personal freedoms. We live on the backs of all who suffered, and struggled, and sacrificed. It’s a lesson I won’t soon forget. We are shaped by all that has come before, and all we endure today. As Kirkpatrick quotes, “It’s not the certainty that something will turn out well but the certainty that something is worth doing regardless of how it turns out.” 

**I was provided with a copy of Something Worth Doing by the publisher and this is my voluntary and honest review.**



MEET JANE KIRKPATRICK

Jane Kirkpatrick is the New York Times and CBA bestselling and award-winning author of more than thirty books, including One More River to CrossEverything She Didn’t SayAll Together in One PlaceA Light in the WildernessThe Memory WeaverThis Road We Traveled, and A Sweetness to the Soul, which won the prestigious Wrangler Award from the Western Heritage Center. 

Her works have won the WILLA Literary Award, the Carol Award for Historical Fiction, and the 2016 Will Rogers Gold Medallion Award. Jane divides her time between Central Oregon and California with her husband, Jerry, and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Caesar.

  Website ║ Bookbub ║ Facebook 
║ Twitter ║ Pinterest ║ Amazon ║ Goodreads

GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!

THREE WINNERS

1st: Copy of Something Worth Doing + Oregon Map Bag

+ $25 Barnes and Noble Gift Card;

2nd and 3rd:

Copy of Something Worth Doing + $10 Barnes and Noble Gift Card. 

SEPTEMBER 15-25, 2020 

(US ONLY)

A RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY


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4 thoughts on “Book Review: Something Worth Doing

Add yours

    1. All I kept thinking while reading this, was how they really rushed through the Women’s Suffrage movement in every US History class I can remember. I knew the basic facts and of key characters like Susan B. Anthony, but it really struck me how everything these women fought for only came to pass a hundred years ago. A fantastic read, and a humbling reading experience, for sure 🙂

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