Desert Medicine is about a young mother of twins who is going through a divorce and has lost her sense of family. Laurelle refuses to feel sorry for herself, or to be classified as a “bitter divorcee,” so she volunteers to help an older woman who has cancer. Laurelle has found that the older woman, Rhoda, had also lost her sense of family many years ago.
Laurelle grows closer to Rhoda, while at the same time struggling to be a good Mom. Through stories Rhoda shares, Laurelle begins to find healing. But in the end both Rhoda and Laurelle find out that life is hard and there may be much pain in the journey but to hope for the future is a conscious decision they both had to make.
This is not a book you can read and just walk away from. You think about it days later. If you are involved in a book reading club, this book would be an excellent book to discuss. Desert Medicine brought out every emotion in me, anger, joy, frustration, and crying at different times throughout the book. As a reader you become part of Laurelle’s life, and when you finish the book you feel like you have lost a friend. Even when you are close to completing the book, you still have no idea how it will end. Alexander took all the emotions I felt throughout this book, and pierced my heart right up to the final page. This is a book you don’t want to give up on half way through; there is treasure at the end. Life is messy, and filled with imperfect people, but God is sovereign and can work through all situations. I recommend adding this book to your must-read list of 2008.