My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Suggested Age: 12+
Genre: Christian, Amish Fiction
It’s time to make a trip back to Hickory Hollow! I could not wait to read this book and I was not disappointed. Part of the appeal to these books for me was visiting and getting to know more about the community of Hickory Hollow–the home of Katie Lapp from “The Shunning.” If you’re anything like me then you’re probably a fan of Ella Mae Zook and the Home to Hickory Hollow series gives readers another chance to visit with her! I must admit that Ella Mae is the biggest reason I look forward to these books so much!
In this book we go back to Hickory Hollow and into the home of Joanna Kurtz. Joanna’s story starts with the following phrase, “Three times a bridesmaid, never a bride.” Eager to prove the old proverb wrong—Joanna is thrilled when she meets Eben Troyer and excited at the prospect of finding love. Like any good love story though—this love doesn’t come without trials. Eben is from a different state and the long distance relationship starts to take a toll on the budding romance. Further, the bishop has learned of Joanna’s writing fiction stories and her good standing in the church hangs in the balance—complicating any chance of a transfer of membership to another Amish church.
When I really enjoy a story I dislike revealing too much of the storyline, mostly because I want others to experience the pleasure themselves so I won’t go too in depth with this review. I really loved the characters in this book—more than The Fiddler. Joanna is just such a joy and I felt like this character was given a soul with true emotions and such a depth of realism to her that I felt I was reading about a real person. The words seemed to just jump off the pages and bring her to life! I also enjoyed reading about Cora Jane. The funny thing about Cora Jane is that my daughter and I were reading through the book at the same time and she would look up from her book to say, “Can you believe that girl?” Several minutes would pass and I would look up from my book and say, “Did she really just do that?” and my daughter would reply, “Who? Cora Jane?” When you have characters you can talk about in a story it means it is well written and possesses a depth that pulls you in and immerses you in the story.
Having said that—pick this book up! You won’t be disappointed! If you’re reading for Ella Mae then be sure to comment below! Surely I am not the only die-hard Ella fan!
Beverly Marie Jones (Lewis) was born in the heart of Amish country—Lancaster, Pennsylvania. At the tender age of nine, she began writing short stories and poetry.
Beverly’s first venture into adult fiction is the best-selling trilogy, The Heritage of Lancaster County, including The Shunning, a suspenseful saga of Katie Lapp, a young Amish woman drawn to the modern world by secrets from her past. The book is loosely based on the author’s maternal grandmother, Ada Ranck Buchwalter, who left her Old Order Mennonite upbringing to marry a Bible College student. One Amish-country newspaper claimed Beverly’s work to be “a primer on Lancaster County folklore” and offers “an insider’s view of Amish life.”
A member of the National League of American Pen Women, as well as a Distinguished Alumnus of Evangel University, Lewis has written over 80 books for children, youth, and adults, many of them award-winning. She and her husband, David, make their home in Colorado, where they enjoy hiking, biking, and spending time with their family. They are also avid musicians and fiction “book worms.”
You can find out more about this author by visiting her website at http://www.beverlylewis.com/
I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.