Following Your Heart
Second in Fields of Home series
by Jerry S Eicher
Susan Hostetler, her friend Teresa Long and Teresa's baby, Samuel, are settling in at Susan's parents, Menno and Anna, home. Teresa is loving the Amish life and looking forward to going to her first church services. The women are busy doing their Saturday cleaning when they hear a buggy pulling in the drive way, it is Deacon Ray, coming to talk to Menno. After the Deacon leaves, Menno goes inside to deliver the bad news, Teresa is not allowed to go to services! She is disappointed but it doesn't deter her, she asks if they can at least take Samuel with them, she is determined to give him a better life than she had.
Susan's former beau, Thomas, wants to win her heart back and comes up with a plan. He thinks if Teresa can find a beau and get married maybe he'd have a better chance. Thomas goes to Yost Byler, a man old enough to be Teresa's father, has a filthy house, doesn't clean up himself even and hardly talks to anyone, and convinces him to go to Deacon Ray and offer to marry Teresa on the day of her baptism if he'll let her go to classes. Deacon Ray thinks it over and talks to Menno about it. When Menno explains the plan to Teresa, she gladly agrees to it. After all, she'll get to join the Amish and will have a father for Samuel, a father that will raise him to be a good Amish person and support him. She will do anything for Samuel.
When Deacon Ray's son, James, see Teresa for the first time, he can't take his eyes away. As he studies her he tries to figure out what she's up to, what she and Susan have going on. He does do a pretty good job of figuring Teresa out in his mind.
Susan is not happy at all that Teresa is required to marry Yost and throughout the book tries to talk her into going back to Asbury Park, and she'll go with her. Susan isn't very happy being back at home even though she knows her parents are getting older and need help on the farm. It is Teresa that keeps Susan home, she refuses to leave and feels she deserves old Yost Byler, no matter how bad he is, for the sins of her past.
Teresa is the stronger and more determined one of the two girls. Teresa's coming stirs up a few problems not only in the community but also with Menno, he starts having trouble sleeping because he remembers his past and wonders if an Englisha girlfriend really did lose his child that she was carrying. James has strong feelings for Teresa but his father, the Deacon, orders her not to even talk to him.
I think I enjoyed this book more that the first one, it held my interest. I know that Susan had left the community and came back because of Teresa and Samuel, but I was still impressed at how she wanted to return to the English world and Teresa was the one to encourage her to stay and to give Thomas a second chance. What a strong person Teresa turned out to be, giving the lifestyle she was raised in.
Wholeheartedly recommended as a good read!
I received a print copy of this book from Harvest House Publishers and a ebook copy for my Kindle from Net Galley. I was not required to give a positive review, this review is my opinion.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the NetGalley <http://www.netgalley.com/> book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”