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Julia's Last Hope (Women of the West #2)

3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  1,666 Ratings  ·  73 Reviews
Julia's Last Hope is a story sent in a lumbertown in western Canada. Things are going well for John and Julia Harrigan until the sudden news of the mill closing rocks their secure world. Julia's dreams for her family seem to be crumbling around her until she decides to fight to save the home and town she loves.
Paperback, 208 pages
Published 2006 by Bethany House Publishers (first published January 1st 1990)
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Oct 06, 2016 Hannah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Julia's Last Hope is a beautiful, heartwarming story of a young women trying to help her family survive and make ends meet. I really loved this story and the break from romance was nice as well. =) Another wonderful Janette Oke book!
Sep 07, 2015 Hosanna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
As with almost all of the books that I have read by Janette Oke, this novel was a great, Christian read! The main character had to relay on God during the ordeal that their family went through, and she showed her strong faith through the story line. The characters were real, and felt like real people. I think the ending could have been a bit better though. Overall, I enjoyed this book!
Mar 09, 2016 Jerry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another enjoyable historical fiction yarn from this author.
Though slower paced, Julia's Last Hope was an enjoyable read for me. :)

Set in the early to mid 1900's (I'm guessing), this is a story about a family living in a mountain mining town. Julia Harrigan is living happily in a beautiful house with her husband and twin daughters when something happens that puts them all in a hard situation. The mine has closed, and the town will be abandoned. In an attempt to save the town, Julia and the families that decide to stay try to turn the place into a reso
2015 Review: It seems I’ve read this one before, but it didn’t seem familiar. Perhaps that because it was felt a little underwhelming. It had all the classic elements of Oke’s “new adventures in the West” gentle romances, but I just didn’t connect with these characters. The book tried to cover a lot of territory so the children all sort of started running together, which probably didn’t add to my enjoyment. Overall, not a bad read but not my favorite.

2012 Review: Reread 8 or 9? Maybe? I used to
Mar 20, 2013 Cheryl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was definitely one of the better Women of the West books, albeit one of the shortest and simplest. It is such a sweet and cheerful story, even with the sadness of the town dieing when the mill closed.

I actually had read this before when I was a teen and forgot about it until near the end when the baby is born. It had started to feel familiar at times midway through the book but apparently that one scene really stuck with me.

There really isn't much hardship and adversity in this book. Julia'
Nellie Anne
Feb 03, 2011 Nellie Anne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book has some real depth that it might be easy to miss. On the surface, it is about a family fighting to save the home and town the love (already a thought-provoking if not predictable plotline), but really, it is about fighting the tide, and about attempting to control things that are really out of human control. Also, the slowness of resignation to the enevitable is very lifelike. I first read this book on a long flight from the United States to Great Britain in 2000, and was nonplussed b ...more
Oct 12, 2012 Lindsay rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was boring even for Christian fiction. I was disappointed since Janette Oke is usually such an excellent writer. It was almost as if she didn't put any effort at all into writing this book.

There was no conflict whatsoever. Even the usual "struggle to retain faith in the midst of doubt" was superficial at best. All of the characters were almost perfect and got along wonderfully...BORING and unrealistic. The ending was completely rushed, jumping over months with just a few sentences. In
Aug 17, 2013 Dorrice rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
O think this book must have been shorter than the first book in the series. I have read the whole thing today. A poignant story about what happens to a small pioneer town when the one source of employment and business closes. Julia, the protagonist, does her best to work toward making the town self sufficient again by advertising it as a place to vacation.Sadly, one by one the other families leave and only Julia and John are left. John has already found work in another town so has been away much ...more
Debbie Phillips
Jan 14, 2012 Debbie Phillips rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: ladies and young women
Love this book. In this story a logging business closes and the few families that stay in the the town try and save their town. The families open their homes to guests, serving them and using their homes and the mountain town to earn money for their families. Part way through Julia and her family realize that the physical needs of feeding and clothing everyone are not the most important. This trial wakes them up to the spiritual needs of their guests and the other members of their town. Do they ...more
Aug 16, 2016 Terri rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: listened-to
I don't know if I've just read too many of Oke's books lately or if this one just isn't as good. It's hard to tell. In this one Julia and her family face the closure of the mill and the emptying of the town. Most of the time I kept thinking that Julia and her husband should just sit down and talk to each other instead of assuming they knew what the other was thinking. They spend 2-3 years trying to save their town and save their beautiful home for each other when the other one doesn't need the h ...more
Nadine Keels
Aug 15, 2014 Nadine Keels rated it really liked it
Thoughts on the entire series.

Overall, Women of the West is my favorite series (that I’ve read so far) by Oke, where I really reveled in what the author had to bring in all of her sweet, warm, and simplistic glory. However, the books aren’t only warm fuzzies, as Oke does deal with some tough, and even some potentially controversial, issues, giving the reader some points to chew on but doing it in her warm style.

I’ve read most of the books in the series more than once (maybe even three times, wit
Aug 20, 2012 Larisha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I fell in love with Julia Harrigan and her family as they fight to save the town they love. Though they end up leaving the now-ghost town of Calder Springs, it is evident that they stayed as long as they were needed to stay, and learned the lessons and had the experiences God had for them there.

Each new phase of their adventure in the dying town teaches them more about faith in God and being a well as introduces them to some interesting characters. The life journey God has for each
Morris Graham
Jan 08, 2015 Morris Graham rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Julia's Last Hope seems to not have a valid point, like the author was rushed to deadline or something. Julia and her husband live in a very fine house that they acquired in a logging community. The mill shuts down and the town dries up. Julia stays and encourages some of the hold outs to persevere. In the end, there was no real point to the book, just failed communication between husband and wife. Not the quality of her other books which always seemed to not only have a point but got you well i ...more
Jan 05, 2009 Antof9 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2004-read
This was an interesting look at a small Canadian lumber town and what happened/happens when the lumber runs out. Julia being from the East, genteel, a little spoiled, and liking nice things seemed kind of cliche. Either that, or because Janette Oke's 'Canadian West' series is *so* good; this was a little weak.

It seemed as if some of the minor characters could have been developed more, and this almost felt like a short story in terms of character development, but it was still pleasant to read and
Claudia Irene
It's a beautiful story. I like the description of a place above the mountain where it has the breeze of the wind and a very wonderful view, i could picture it in my head. And I like the determination of Julia who knows no surrender. I love the end too, it's not so much of a made believe end where everybody live happily ever after, but rather a realistic ending that tell the reader that sometimes it is okay to follow changes and to move on from something that couldn't be mend anymore.
May 20, 2011 Carma rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting story about a woman trying to save her town from becoming a ghost town after the mill is shut down. The one gem of this story is an illustration of the way God directs us. Sometimes it seems like we are working towards a dead end but, as in this book, it can be important to keep on that track until we have learned something or helped someone. When you look at it, it may seem like it was a bad choice and you should have moved on sooner not later, but that isn't always true.
Nov 07, 2015 Crystal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book, but then again I have loved everything of Janette Oke's that I have read so far. She has a wonderful way of telling stories that make me feel I am right there in the middle of it. The characters are so descriptive I can see them and totally understand them. I love that she doesn't make the characters perfect, but that there is always some growth or humility involved and that it all has a heart that revolves around God.
Nell Secor
Feb 03, 2016 Nell Secor rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Re-read. "Comfort" book. Christian historical fiction. After the mine closes, the town loses its main source of jobs--and people start leaving. Julia strives to keep the town "alive"...A stretch. Didn't love the characters, didn't find it inspirational--but I hadn't read it in forever, had to give it another chance. No change of opinion despite the years between readings!
Aug 16, 2013 Laurie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another good quick read from Oke's Canadian West series about a wife who tries to save her town from becoming a ghost town when the lumber mill closes. Slowly the town disappears, but she tries to encourage those who stay and help the remaining townspeople gain income. Cute little story and quick to read.
Jul 25, 2011 Christina rated it it was ok
This book was okay, but I didn't enjoy it as much as some of Janett Oke's other books. I think I just didn't relate to the characters as much.

I thought it was great that the 'happy ending' is that her idea fails and they give up and move on. I liked the fact that it didn't just all magically work out somehow.
Jan 25, 2008 Sue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The town of Cedar Springs is dying as the lumber mill closes down. Julia suggests turning it into a tourist town, and with the help of her daughters, starts advertising. A pleasant light read with a strong Christian message of hope, as well as a sense of finding God's will, yet without being too 'preachy'. Interesting social history too.
Virginia Markhart
Feb 27, 2013 Virginia Markhart rated it liked it
Always a nice comfortable story from Janette Oke. Perfect for a quick lazy day. This story is about a family living in a lumber town. When the lumber mill closes, the family is faced with the challenge of how to meet their needs without the steady income from the mill. It was sad to watch the town die. The main character, Julia, was very resourceful.
Sky Destrian
Oct 04, 2008 Sky Destrian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone!
This book was not typical of Janette Oke's style, and it was different than most books I've read, but nevertheless I really liked it. It was really interesting and actually a cliffhanger for once! I look forward to reading more of the "Women of the West" series.
Brittany Harris
May 28, 2014 Brittany Harris rated it liked it
I thought this book wasn't too bad although it was rather short I read it in a day and a half. The thing I liked most is the way the main character Julia knew when to listen to her call from God. The end was a nice way to show how things can be good no matter what.
Nov 11, 2013 Rachel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was not what I expected. It did seem a bit of a downer at times but in the end it came out okay. The main idea gotten out of it was to have trust in God he will lead you where you need to go.
Rebecca Rash
May 28, 2013 Rebecca Rash rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First Janette Oke book I read, and have re-read it a couple times. I enjoyed it! Less romantic than most of her books, which is fine, and a little less exciting, but it was a good story. Janette Oke's Women of the West series are easily some of her best.
Mar 01, 2013 Karen rated it liked it
John Harrigan built his wife Julia a beautiful home in Calder Springs, but when the mill closed, the town started to dwindle. What were they to do? This was a good story of giving up the things in life and concentrating on the people in it.
Corri Johnson
Janeete Oke is one of my favorite author's. I am not baptist but I love the religeous elements of her story. It also helps that they are historical fiction, my favorite! I always feel like I am part of her stories. This one was no exception!
Another book by one of my favorite authors - I just felt this one was kind of boring, not a lot of different action happening that was interesting.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Mar 10, 2016 03:00PM  
Is this part of a series? 2 18 May 04, 2012 12:20PM  
  • Janette Oke: A Heart for the Prairie
  • The Long Road Home (A Place Called Home, #3)
  • Patience  (Brides of the West, #6)
  • The Crossroad (Amish Country Crossroads, #2)
  • The Damascus Way (Acts of Faith, #3)
  • Travail and Triumph (The Russians, #3)
  • Heirs of the Motherland (The Russians, #4)
Janette Oke writes with a profound simplicity of what she knows best—real life, honest love, and lasting values. With over 23 million in sales, her historical novels portray the lives of early North American settlers from many walks of life and geographical settings. She also writes engaging children's stories and inspiring gift books that warm the heart.

Janette was born during the depression year
More about Janette Oke...

Other Books in the Series

Women of the West (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • The Calling of Emily Evans (Women of the West, #1)
  • Roses for Mama (Women of the West #3)
  • A Woman Named Damaris (Women of the West, #4)
  • They Called Her Mrs. Doc
  • The Measure of a Heart (Women of the West Series, #6)
  • A Bride for Donnigan
  • Heart of the Wilderness
  • Too Long a Stranger
  • The Bluebird and the Sparrow
  • A Gown of Spanish Lace (The Janette Oke Collection) (Women of the West)

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