Saturday, February 14, 2015

Huckleberry Spring by Jennifer Beckstrand - Review of the fourth book in The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill series

Ever since the Helmuths' grandson, Ben, abruptly broke his engagement and moved to Florida, Emma Nelson has kept busy tending her vegetable garden and raising award-winning pumpkins. She can put her heartache aside to help Ben's Mammi with her own pumpkin patch. At least until Ben shows up to lend support to his ailing Dawdi...

Gardening side by side with pretty, nurturing Emma is a sweet kind of torture for Ben. She could have her pick of suitors who can offer what he can't, and he cares too much to burden her with his secret. Leaving once more is the only option. Yet Emma's courage is daring him to accept the grace that flourishes here, and the love that has been calling him back to Huckleberry Hill...

Oh my! This book is a little different than the rest of the series but that doesn't mean it wasn't just as good, if not better. I did not find myself chuckling throughout this story, I was more sad and trying to figure out Ben's secret. And poor Felty, Annie put him through the mill in this one, you have to almost feel sorry for him too, lol. I am so looking forward to Huckleberry Harvest coming out on May 26th that I even read the three preview pages in the back of this book, I NEVER do that! I like to be totally surprised. I had also pre-ordered Huckleberry Spring which I have never done either. I have to say, sorry if I've said it with each review in this series but, I absolutely love this series and Jennifer's writing. Please if you have not read anything by Jennifer Beckstrand start reading this series and you will be sold on her books.

A Simple Faith by Rosalind Lauer - Review of the first book in A Lancaster Crossroads series

Rushing to the scene of a tragic highway collision, nursing student Haley Donovan draws on her training to care for the passengers in the crumpled van. The experience wins her a place in Lancaster County's tight-knit Amish society, and draws her to kindhearted psychologist Dylan Monroe. Working side by side with Dylan who is bringing counseling services to the small town of Halfway, Haley feels an undeniable attraction between them, yet she senses that Dylan is holding back, scarred by the wounds of his past.

Elsie Lapp, the manager of Halfway's country store, is a voice of cheer and goodwill for her customers. But Elsie's serene world spins out of control with the terrible crash, and the young woman finds herself grappling for the simple faith that has always sustained her. Her burden is eased by Ruben Zook, a neighbor known for his snide jokes. In the aftermath of the accident, Ruben reveals a tender heart that could easily sweep her away. However, Elsie carries secrets that keep her from surrendering her heart.

Exploring the ways that faith, hope, and charity bring everyone together, A Simple Faith resonates with the sweetness, purity and power of love.

If you want to see how the English and Amish can work together to overcome a tragedy this will be the book for you. Rosalind told a good story about the two groups of people and how they can become good friends, even if it was a fatal accident that brought them together. She also brings in how the Amish extend forgiveness even when they experience a loss to their own community. I am looking forward to reading the rest of the series as I liked the intermixing of the two 'societies'.