My rating: 4 of 5 stars
In this book we meet Amelia Devries, a very accomplished classical violinist who has, much to the disdain of her parents, her agent and her boyfriend, fallen in love with country fiddlin’. It seems Amelia lives to please everyone else and thus she struggles between following her heart and following the music.
When fate seems to throw Amelia and Michale Hostetler into each others paths, she finds herself running away to Hickory Hollow and is accepted as a guest into the home of Joanna, a warm and inviting young Amish woman who challenges Amelia’s ideas and beliefs. Amelia begins to question her life and her commitments. Ella Mae (remember this spunky and fun loving character from “The Shunning?”) urges Amelia to examine her faith. Is she fulfilling her commitments for others only? Has she ever considered using her talents to honor God first?
In the meanwhile, Michael is questioning whether he should commit to the Amish church. He is torn, having been the sole influence on a wayward niece who is now in an abusive relationship with a good for nothing drunk. Michael longs to make right those wrongs while still doing what is best for himself. And of course, he really wants to get to know Amelia a little bit better!
Eventually both Michael and Amelia have to make big decisions regarding their faith and family. Putting God first and then their families leads them to a new path. Does that path push them together? I guess you’ll just have to read to find out!
This was a great read. I was really torn on rating this book but in the end I had to give it 4 stars only because I didn’t feel the same emotional pull to the characters the way that I have from other books by Mrs. Lewis. I think for me, it was just the characters in this particular story. I really wanted to get to know Joanna better so I am really looking forward to the next installment, “The Bridesmaid” which is to be released on September 11, 2012. I felt drawn to her and of course I always look for any chance to visit with Ella Mae!
On a quick side note, Beverly Lewis made me proud with her mention of Suzuki Violin and Mark O’Connor in this book! My daughters are proud to be Suzuki students of the beautifully talented Ms. Rhonda Lorence who happens to be a fan of O’Connor and shares his book ” O’CONNOR Violin Method” with her students!