From Goodreads: Henry Detweiler dies unexpectedly, leaving his second wife and three daughters, Eleanor, Mary Ann, and Maggie, in the care of John, his oldest son from a previous marriage. John and his wife, Fanny, inherit the farm and, despite a deathbed promise to take care of their stepmother and half-sisters, John and Fanny make it obvious that Mrs. Detweiler and her daughters are not welcomed at the farm. When Edwin Fischer, Fanny’s older brother, takes notice of Eleanor and begins to court her, much to the disapproval of his sister, Fanny makes life even more difficult for the Detweiler women.
In their new home, Eleanor wonders if Edwin will come calling while Mary Ann catches the attention of Christian Bechtler, an older bachelor in the church district, and John Willis, a younger man set to inherit a nearby farm. While Eleanor quietly pines for Edwin, Mary Ann does not hide her infatuation with John Willis. When the marriage proposal from John Willis does not materialize, Mary Ann is left grief-stricken and humiliated as the Amish community begins to gossip about their relationship. In the meantime, a broken-hearted Eleanor learns that Edwin is engaged to another woman.
Will admitting her affections for him result in the marriage proposal Eleanor has always desired?
I really enjoyed this book. The story was so easy to get involved in, and I found myself hooked from page one. The character development was fantastic. My favorite character was Eleanor. I felt she was the easiest to relate to and was everything you would expect from a young, yet mature, Amish woman. I found Mary Ann to be a bit immature but enjoyed seeing her character grow and mature throughout the story. Widow Jennings reminded me of the jolly nun from the movie Sister Act, always chatty and laughing. Although after a bit one could see her true colors as a gossip and she didn’t seem quite so nice to me. And then there was Fanny. Don’t even get me started on her! It has been some time since I have wanted to smack a fictional character upside the head and give her a piece of my mind but that’s just what I wanted to do with Fanny. This just shows Sarah’s ability as an author to make the characters come to life and make you have feelings towards them.
This story has all of the elements one would expect in Amish fiction. In fact, the story didn’t seem like it was a retelling of a classic but just a well-written story about an Amish family facing changes and challenges in their lives. I found myself totally immersed in the Detweiler sisters story.
The story progresses nicely and there were enough twists and turns to make me wonder what was going to happen next and keep me reading “just to the end of this chapter” until I had read chapter after chapter and reached the end of the story.
I think I now want to read the original of this story to see how it compares to this one. Hopefully, I won’t be disappointed!
I received a free copy of this book from the author for reviewing purposes. All opinions are mine and mine alone. I was in no way pressured or encouraged to leave a positive review.
Her book, An Empty Cup, was #3 on Amazon Top 100 eBooks in January 2016.
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