Friday, January 11, 2008

Guest Reviewer: Going Home & On Her Own

Reviews by Callie Laney

I've always been fascinated with the Amish. It started back in elementary school when I read Shoo-Fly Girl by Lois Lensky. In my later adult years I've become acquainted with Beverly Lewis, Wanda E. Brunstetter, and a few others.

Most recently I've been reading Wanda E. Brunstetter. In her "Brides of Webster County" series, she travels to the Amish community in Missouri. In Book One, Going Home, the story is told about a young widowed mother who is forced to return home because of dire circumstances. After a decade of living "fancy" it is quite an adjustment for Faith and her youn daughter to return to plain life. Faith has no intention of really changing her religious beliefs and plans to leave again asap. Through a series of accidents, her departure is delayed. Finally she and her parents are able to overcome most of the misunderstandings that caused her to leave her Amish home. This book is full of humor. The male character is extremely likeable. This is an enjoyable read.

In Book Two, On Her Own, a recently widowed Amish woman, Barbara Zook struggles with grief, postpartum depression, the conflict between being a stay-at-home mom or a career woman (she owns a harness shop.) Can she find a way to raise her children, keep her shop, and find fulfillment? Or will she be forced to marry the bishop who has four teenage daughters of his own to raise? You just might be surprised with some of the endings!