Julia Bernay believes that God has called her to be a doctor, but in 1881 London this is not an easy thing to accomplish. A large portion of society i still opposed the idea of women doctors, or in any profession for that matter, but new opportunities are becoming available each day. Entering the London School of Medicine for Women is extremely difficult, but Julia is determined to succeed. She studies hard at Queens college for a year, catching up in areas her education has lacked until now. And then trouble strikes. A lawsuit against the school of medicine threatens to close the doors. A battle rages between two sides, one a rich man with title, power, and influence who feels offended, the other a school of woman. One of the barristers fighting against the school is Michael Stephenson, a man Julia is quickly becoming close to, despite her best efforts. Michael and Julia form an unexpected bond, which has consequences for all involved, and begs the question, can a woman be a doctor and still have a family?
I loved the premise of this book, the time period was so interesting. I loved looking into the lives of these early female doctors, and how they balanced the ins and outs of life and family. I also liked Julia's interaction with the poorest set of London, the parts of London that most people avoided at all cost, and how she realized that there's a need for medical attention, and a need for God, everywhere you go in this life. The premise of woman doctor, and the interaction of Julia and her patients, was truly my favorite part of this book. There was also a little bit of a mystery, having to do with Julia's past, which was also fun, and admittingly, still left a little open ended, even with the epilogue. I liked how it ended though.
In my opinion, there was a little too much time spent on the "romance" part of the story. The inner dialogue of the two characters, making eyes at each other, and constantly thinking about each other, was a little over the top for me.
Overall, a job well done! This is actually book 2 in the London Beginnings series (although they seem to stand independently as books, as far as I can tell). I would definitely read other books by Jennifer Delamere (even if I do roll my eyes a bit sometimes, ha!).