Monthly Archives: February 2016

An Amish Year: Four Amish Novellas by Beth Wiseman; Thomas Nelson ISBN 978-1-4016-8977-3

An Amish Year, by Beth Wiseman, consists of four Amish novellas that tells the stories of their memorable characters.

In the first novella, Rooted in Love, we learn that Rosemary is still trying to dodge Saul’s advances. They had dated five years ago, but Rosemary abruptly broke off the relationship without giving Saul an explanation. She has kept the reason to herself. An accident forces them to spend time together and they are forced to deal with their feelings for each other. To further complicate her life, her widowed father now has a love interest that Rosemary is not crazy about. Is there a way that the characters can work through their issues?

The second novella, A Love for Irma Rose, opens with Jonas standing in a cemetery professing his love for Irma Rose. Chapter One opens fifty-three years earlier in 1957. Jonas is certain that Irma Rose is the girl for him. Irma Rose thought she knew who she wanted to date and it wasn’t Jonas. On the surface they seem mismatched. But, maybe not. Suddenly Jonas’s mother becomes ill and Jonas goes missing. He is looking less and less like good husband material. Irma Rose steps in to help the family and she begins to reconsider her opinions of Jonas. Does she want the excitement he would bring to a relationship?

In Patchwork Perfect, the third novella, we meet Eli who is a widower with two children. The family has moved to a new community and Eli is hoping to meet a woman he can marry. He meets three women who he views as possibilities. The first candidate, Miriam, declines his invitation to have dinner with him. She bluntly tells him she will never date him. No reason given. Candidates two and three, even though promising at first, don’t work out either for Eli. However, it is Miriam that he is attracted to. At the same time, Eli’s daughter is dealing with problems of her own. Miriam comes to her side to offer comfort and guidance. By doing so, perhaps she can take her own advice and find a way to make a future with Eli and his family.

The fourth novella, When Christmas Comes Again, begins with a mystery. Katherine, a widow, feels she is being followed and she doesn’t know why. When a box full of photos of her dead husband and some of the rest of the family is delivered to home she is understandably surprised. The sender offers to meet with her to offer an explanation. She decides to meet with him and from that day forward things become very interesting.

All four of the stories are beautifully told. All of them deal with serious matters which include family, honor, responsibility, grief and love. The characters are well developed, engaging and realistic. The collection was a pleasure to read. Highly recommended.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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21 Seconds To Change Your World by Dr. Mark Rutland; Bethany House Publishing ISBN 978-0-7642-1770-8

In Dr. Mark Rutland’s book, 21 Seconds To Change Your World, he eloquently explains the Lord’s Prayer and Psalm 23 and encourages the reader to become familiar with them. He presents the histories of Jesus and King David and details their similarities and differences. He has skillfully crafted an inspirational and powerful book about the power of prayer.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishing and the opinions expressed are my own.

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Amish Sweethearts by Leslie Gould (Neighbors of Lancaster County Book Two) Bethany House Publishers ISBN 978-0-7642-1524-7

In Amish Sweethearts, a novel by Leslie Gould, we learn that Zane Beck and Lila Lehman had shared a beautiful friendship as children. As young adults their differences can not be ignored. Lila is Amish while Zane is not. It is obvious they have feelings for each other, but Lila is being courted by Reuben, an Amish man. Perhaps for the wrong reasons, Zane enlists in the Army and comes face to face with life altering challenges. Lila struggles with her family obligations, her love for Zane and her commitments. Reuben is not the man she loves, but marriage to Zane doesn’t seem possible. Their complex relationship is filled with misunderstandings and long separations. Can Lila and Zane share a future together despite the obstacles?
The author skillfully takes the reader into the protagonists lives as well as those of the large cast of realistic secondary characters who are very important to the story. Lives are intertwined and relationships change. Family dynamics are revealed. Strong themes of family, love, faith and hope come together to make this a deep and moving novel. Highly recommended.

I received this book free from Bethany House and I give this review of my own free will.

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