By Jenny Blake @ausjenny
In the 80’s an older lady from the church gave me a book to read for Christmas. I hadn’t read many since high school. I went from always reading to rarely reading. I remember starting this book on Christmas day and finishing is that night and wanting to read more in the series to the point of speaking with the lady about more books in the series. She was planning on giving me book two for my birthday and gave it to me early and I ordered the last two in the series. The book was Janette Oke’s When Calls the Heart from the Canadian West Series. I fell back in love with reading but also in love with both Canada and Mounties. This book is what started me reading again and reading more Christian fiction and while there wasn’t as many choices around back then there were some.
This book also ignited a passion to want to go to Canada and meet a Mountie in their uniform. Going to Canada was a dream which I didn’t think would happen but in 2007 I had a chance to a retreat for an online ladies group I was part off and we stayed in Vancouver. While there I stayed near Whistler with a friend and hoped to meet a Mountie, this didn’t happen, but I did see some wonderful scenery and also some of planning for the 2010 winter Olympics.
I did get to see a couple of Mountie mascots at the shops where you can buy their merchandise. I returned to Canada the following year for a friend’s wedding and saw more of the country and love the mountains.
Reading the books about the area even if they are historical had a huge impact on this reader. I also got to do what my mother had wanted to do as she had had a teacher doing an teaching exchange from Canada when she was in Primary School.
I have been reintroduced to When Calls the Heart through the DVD Series. While it is different to the books it still shows the beautiful country. As readers this is what we want a book to do, make us want to visit a place or to make us feel like we have been transported to a special place.