Growing up I loved all my classes in History, English, and what we called Social Studies. Their one unifying link being stories. I loved learning about the people and faces from the near and distant past and was often within reach of yet another book delving into some brand new tale.
I also quickly realized that within the Christian curriculum I used, there was a great gap in women holding central positions in these stories. Since this was pre-internet days (actually to be honest that house is still in a slow zone for internet thanks to funky geography) the days of hopping online to make up the deficit were far away.
This is why Jamie Janoz's When Others Shuddered is so important. Here readers are introduced to multiple strong women who worked alongside the men of whom we've heard so many stories but were active, passionate, and strong in their own ways and made their own impacts on their communities and the church.
This book is an odd combination of recorded facts and comments and fictional recreations of the narratives these women's lives wove. This just serves to make the book more engaging and, in fact, I can easily see Janoz's book adding some much needed balance and life into a homeschooling curriculum.
The women are easy to engage with throughout the pages. Some came from poverty while others were of wealth. Some women remained single, others married, some become mothers, others dove into their work. Each woman faced challenges, heartbreak, and set backs before moving forward once again. Although these women accomplished great works in their faith Janoz was careful to include what they triumphed against and kept these women as just that - living breathing women who are relatable role models, something our girls need.
I also appreciated the readability of this book. Although I am, admittedly, a nerd. I can easily picture women of all ages finding themselves lost within these pages. The text is easy enough for pre-teens or late elementary students but even as a mom myself I found myself lost in these stories of life, They are addictive.
Overall, this is a solid little book and a great launching pad into discovering other lesser known women of faith.
4 out 5 stars.
I received this book from Moody Publishers in exchange for my honest opinion. The views expressed are entirely my own.