Read The Midwife Online

Authors: Jolina Petersheim

Tags: #FICTION / Christian / General, #FICTION / General

The Midwife

Advance Praise for
The Midwife

“Jolina Petersheim’s lyrical storytelling absolutely sings
—but it’s her quick-paced plot, complex characters, and insights into the Plain world that made it impossible for me to put
The Midwife


Bestselling author of
The Amish Midwife

“Masterfully told . . . riveting . . . with enough twists and turns to surprise any reader. I promise this story will make you think, pull at your heartstrings, and keep you turning pages until the end.”


Author of
Bonnet Strings: An Amish Woman’s Ties to Two Worlds

“The bonds of motherhood and choices made ripple across generations in this powerful story that challenges the reader to examine modern-day ethics in light of eternal truths. A story of hope and restoration,
The Midwife
is a tale to be savored.”


Award-winning author of
The Hatmaker’s Heart

The Midwife
is a stunning narrative that explores maternal attachment in all its forms and God’s all-encompassing care and plan. Ms. Petersheim colors outside the lines with her unique writing style, and I have once again fallen in love with her work.”


Author of
A Woman of Fortune

The Midwife
, Jolina Petersheim’s thoughtful storytelling illustrates how God’s love can woo us from pain and hiding into the abundant life He has created.”


Author of
Secrets Over Sweet Tea

The Midwife
reads like a story that’s been unearthed instead of imagined. Decades of pain and rejection are peeled away slowly, deftly. Jolina Petersheim weaves a brilliant story that lets us absorb the years and grow with her characters. By the time they’re ready to consider the risk of holding out and the cost of letting go, so are we.”


Belle of All Things Southern and author of
Heart Wide Open

“Englisch and Mennonite worlds collide in this poetically written story, layered with intrigue, mystery, and redemption. With a large cast of characters, readers are sure to find a version of themselves and the gift of hope in the pages of
The Midwife


Author of
Promise to Return

Praise for
The Outcast

“Petersheim makes an outstanding debut with this fresh and inspirational retelling of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s
The Scarlet Letter
. Well-drawn characters and good, old-fashioned storytelling combine in an excellent choice for Nancy Mehl’s readers.”


“Petersheim’s emotional story leaves readers intrigued by the purity of Rachel’s strong will, resilience, and loyalty.”


“Like Hawthorne, Petersheim clearly dramatizes the weight of sin, but she deviates from the original by leaving room for repentance.”


“From its opening lines,
The Outcast
wowed me in every way. Quickly paced, beautifully written, flawlessly executed, I could not put this book down.”


“The story line runs smoothly throughout, with twists that readers will enjoy. The author’s Plain background shines in this moving novel.”


“A powerful and poignant story that transcends genre stereotypes and is not easily forgotten. The caliber of Jolina’s prose defies her debut author status, and I’m eager to read more.”


“You are going to love this book. Be ready to enter an amazing new world, but make sure you have a box of Kleenex for this journey.”


“A must-read that will draw you into a secretive world of sin and senselessness and leave you with the hope of one set free.”


New York Times
bestselling author of
Into the Free

“Don’t miss this vivid, lyrical journey into a mysterious world that many view from the outside, but few understand as intimately as Jolina Petersheim
—a talented new author to watch!”


National bestselling author of
The Prayer Box

“Surprising and satisfying, this epic first novel of love and betrayal, forgiveness and redemption will resonate with people from every corner of life.”


National bestselling author of
Praying for Strangers

“From the first word until the last,
The Outcast
captivates and charms, reminding us that forgiveness and love are two of life’s greatest gifts. A brilliant must-read debut novel.”


Author of
In the Garden with Billy: Lessons about Life, Love & Tomatoes

The Outcast
is an insightful look at the complexities of living in community while living out one’s faith.”


Author of
Will Jesus Buy Me a Doublewide? ’cause I need more room for my plasma TV

“[This] riveting portrait of life behind this curious and ofttimes mysterious world captivated me from the first word and left me breathless for more.”


Bestselling author of
Whistlin’ Dixie in a Nor’easter

“I have to say I’ve never been a fan of the Amish fiction genre. I’m still not. But Jolina Petersheim’s
The Outcast
was the only Amish fiction book I’ve ever read from cover to cover.”


USA Today
New York Times
bestselling author of
Growing Up Amish

“A story of hypocrisy and redemption in a secretive community that will keep the reader turning the pages.”


Award-winning author of
Man in the Blue Moon

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Visit Jolina Petersheim online at

and Tyndale’s quill logo are registered trademarks of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

The Midwife

Copyright © 2014 by Jolina Petersheim

Cover image of woman copyright © Juanmonio/Getty Images. All rights reserved.

Cover image of baby copyright © Lisa Valder/Getty Images. All rights reserved.

Designed by Dean H. Renninger

Edited by Kathryn S. Olson

Published in association with Ambassador Literary Agency, Nashville, TN.

Some Scripture taken from the Holy Bible,
New International Version
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.
Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Some Scripture quotations are taken from the
Holy Bible
, King James Version.

The Midwife
is a work of fiction. Where real people, events, establishments, organizations, or locales appear, they are used fictitiously. All other elements of the novel are drawn from the author’s imagination.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Petersheim, Jolina.

  The midwife / Jolina Petersheim.

    pages ; cm

  ISBN 978-1-4143-7935-7 (sc)

1.  Midwives
—Fiction. 2.  Mennonites
—Fiction. 3.  Single women
—Fiction. 4.  Christian fiction.  I. Title.

  PS3616.E84264M53 2014

—dc23 2014005592

ISBN 978-1-4143-9600-2 (ePub); ISBN 978-1-4143-8461-0 (Kindle); ISBN 978-1-4143-9601-9 (Apple)

Build: 2014-05-09 12:25:35

In memory of our unborn child, whom we will hold again, and to all those who have lost. May you receive beauty for ashes.


How do you even begin to thank all those who have helped you put ink to paper?

Firstly, to my Tyndale team, composed of Karen Watson, Stephanie Broene, Kathy Olson, Maggie Rowe, Julie Dumler, Shaina Turner, and all those whom I might not interact with on a regular basis, but who make things run so smoothly behind the scenes: Thank you for believing in my rough-cut stories and for providing the tools to make them shine.

To my agent, Wes Yoder: Again, it’s been a privilege to work with you. Thank you for your wisdom and dependability during every step of the publishing and life journey. You have been such a blessing to me.

To my wordsmith-partners-in-crime, many of whom I have never even met but whom I still count as cherished friends: You all have gone above and beyond the call of duty to help my writing find its way into readers’ hands. Thank you, thank you; I want to be sure to offer that same helping hand when your books are birthed. We need this community more than ever before.

To my readers: Well, I could not be writing this if not for you. Thanks for giving a fledgling writer a chance and for offering your support through word-of-mouth, messages, and
reviews. Each of you has become so very dear to me. I hope our paths cross in person soon.

To my midwife, Robin: From that winter night two years ago when I sprinted the fire-escape stairs of the birthing center to increase my contractions so I wouldn’t have to go to the hospital, to this recent fall morning I called you, sobbing, to tell you of the loss of our unborn child, you have been there for me. Thank you for your steadfast maternal love for those of us who are in the process of becoming mothers ourselves. You are a gift to womanhood, and I am honored to call you friend.

To my best friend, Misty: No acknowledgements would be complete without letting you know how dear you are to me. Though miles may separate us, we will forever remain neighbors and sisters in my heart.

To my parents and siblings, from both maiden Miller and married Petersheim sides: As the years pass, I no longer see a division between law and love. We have truly become one family. Thank you for the prayers, the laughter, and
—even the tears. We are so blessed to have you in our lives.

To my daughter, my Balm of Gilead, who is right now waking up in her crib: I pray that you will know in your heart that you have been cherished since conception. Rest assured in the fact that you are loved to the heights and to the depths, and that your father and I would go to both measures to protect you. Yet we know that before you were ours, you were his
—your Creator’s. And so we daily entrust him with your precious life.

I would like to thank my gem of a husband, who
—through hardship and triumph
—has truly become my other, sometimes better, half. God sure knew what he was doing when he put your logical self into my zany life. Thanks for always being my first reader, and for being patient with me until I heed your thoughtful advice. I could not do any of this without you, nor would I want to try. I’ll love you forever.

Lastly, I thank my Creator for giving me the idea for
The Midwife
shortly after my own daughter’s birth, and for orchestrating the timing, so that I would begin the editorial process after the loss of our unborn child, when I needed to find healing through this panacea of story. Thank you for giving me strength to offer others hope. May they see your light reflected on every page.

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