Saturday, October 31, 2015
Sunday, October 25, 2015
The Amish of Summer Grove, Book One
Ariana s comfortable Old Order Amish world is about to unravel. Will holding tightly to the cords of family keep them together or simply tear them apart?
Twenty-year-old Ariana Brenneman loves her family and the Old Ways. She has two aspirations: open a cafe in historic Summer Grove to help support her family's ever-expanding brood and to keep any other Amish from being lured into the Englisch life by Quill Schlabach. Five years ago Quill, along with her dear friend Frieda, ran off together, and Ariana still carries the wounds of that betrayal. When she unexpectedly encounters him, she soon realizes he has plans to help someone else she loves leave the Amish. Despite how things look, Quill's goal has always been to protect Ariana from anything that may hurt her, including the reasons he left. After returning to Summer Grove on another matter, he unearths secrets about Ariana and her family that she is unaware of. His love and loyalty to her beckons him to try to win her trust and help her find a way to buy the cafe because when she learns the truth that connects her and a stranger named Skylar Nash, Quill knows it may upend her life forever.
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I always enjoy a wonderfully written story of the Amish and Ties That Bind did not disappoint. Author Cindy Woodsmall introduced me to a close-knit family and their Amish community living a simple, God-fearing life in Summer Grove, Pennsylvania. I was drawn into the lives of Ariana and her family from page one. I found myself cheering her on as she works toward buying the cafe and felt my heart stop when she learned the truth regarding the night she was born. I was wondering how Cindy Woodsmall was going to tie up all the storylines in the book and then realized this was the first book in a new series! I was so excited and disappointed... I love the book and now I have to wait for the next book to learn the outcome of Ariana's life!
For more information on Cindy Woodsmall, her books, and Amish recipes, check out her website.
I received a complimentary copy of Ties That Bind from WaterBrook Press and their Blogging for Books program for my honest review.
Saturday, October 10, 2015
Available: September 2015
Publisher: Howard Books: An Imprint of Simon and Schuster, Inc.
Eve by Wm. Paul Young takes an elaborate look at Creation and God’s unending love, grace, and mercy. Woven into a story of one girl’s search for meaning in her broken life, we find ourselves seeing a new side of God and His all-consuming desire of reconciliation with us. It did take a while for me not to focus on the characters titles: Collector, Guardian, Healer, Mender, Scholars, and Engineer just to name a few, but to focus on their jobs and accomplishments. As I neared the end of the story, I saw truths in my own life which were mirrored in the novel, Eve. This will be a story which will be revisited often – in book and in thought.
A few of the many nuggets gleaned from this story:
“Prayer is mostly about talking to God – about life and people and what is before us and who matters to us in that moment” (p. 101). ~ Gerald
“… trust is about relationship, not power. When two dance, each is always respectfully attuned to the other. There is a timing of relationship, and that is Ruach’s (the Holy Spirit) playground” (page 257). ~ God / Adonai
I received a free copy of Eve from NetGalley and Howard Books for my honest review.