The Tinderbox by Beverly Lewis (review by Kristi)

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About the bookWith her Amish parents’ twentieth anniversary approaching, eighteen-year-old Sylvia Miller stumbles across a surprise–the old brass tinderbox her clockmaker father keeps in his Lancaster County shop has been left unlocked. Against her better judgment, Sylvia opens the cherished heirloom, not realizing that what she is about to discover will splinter apart her happy life.

Sylvia’s bewilderment grows when her father confronts her about snooping in the box. To her amazement, the respected convert to the Old Order reacts as if he has something to hide.

Burdened by the weight of his deception, Earnest Miller decides he must reveal the details about his past to his beloved wife, Rhoda. The long-kept secret alters everything for the close-knit family, jeopardizing Earnest and Rhoda’s relationship, as well as threatening Sylvia’s recent engagement to the preacher’s grandson.

Can the Millers find a way forward through the turmoil to a place of forgiveness and acceptance?

Publication Date:  April 2, 2019

Publisher:  Bethany House Publishers

Genre:  Amish fiction


My thoughtsA longtime fan of Beverly Lewis I have found her more recent books either a hit or miss. The Tinderbox is definitely a hit with me. This book grabbed my attention from the beginning and kept it until the very last page. The Tinderbox is a book that’s not to be missed.

The storyline of this book intrigued me as it’s one I don’t think I’ve come across in the genre. And as much as I love the Amish fiction genre I have to admit that I find it to be a bit “same old, same old” at times. So I was interested in this story about what happens when secrets are uncovered and how it affects not only the family but the community. Not to spoil anything for future readers of the book but there are parts of the story that made me feel as if I were really getting an unfiltered look into the Amish lifestyle.

There was one aspect of the story that I found odd though and that was the inability to tell if the story was modern day or set back in time like maybe the 1950’s or 60’s. It wasn’t until there was mention of an Uber driver that I could tell the book was a current day read. This doesn’t distract from the book in any way but it was just something I found a bit off.

I can’t wait to read the conclusion of this family’s story in The Timepiece which will release later this year. I’m hoping it will be just as attention-grabbing as The Tinderbox, a book I couldn’t put down.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher and was not required to write a review. All opinions are mine.


About the authorBeverly Lewis, raised in Pennsylvania Amish country and both a schoolteacher and an accomplished musician, has been an award-winning author for over a dozen years. Her acclaimed novel, The Preacher’s Daughter, was a 2006 Quill Book Award finalist in the romance category. Her books have appeared on numerous bestseller lists, including USA Today and The New York Times. She and her husband, David, live in Colorado.

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