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  • Writer's pictureJoan Fernandez

The Unlocked Path

By Janis Robinson Daly

There’s something so satisfying in reading about our female forebears. Women who followed an internal urging to take a different path than society dictated and so laid a pathway for an entire future movement.

Today, the majority of med students are female, but 100 years ago female doctors were scarce. The Unlocked Path’s protagonist, Eliza Edwards, pulls us into this turbulent 20th century period with all of its doubts, risks, brave friendships, and newfound friction between career and marriage/motherhood for women.

The cast of carefully chosen secondary characters each represent a New Woman’s pioneering attitude at the time.

Author Daly’s extensive research, delicately laced through each scene, does an exceptional job of bringing the historical period to vibrant life. But what will stay with me most about this story is reflected in the book’s dedication to the author’s grandmother—“I never knew your full story, so I created one”— it wasn’t that long ago that the world was very different for women. So many of the small courageous acts in living lives against society’s grain have been forgotten.

The Unlocked Path gives us a chance to remember and marvel.

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