Thursday, November 29, 2012

A Christmas Trio -- Christmas in Apple Ridge

The Amish community of Apple Ridge is a place to discover anew that even though life doesn’t always look the way you might expect and pain can’t help but color our actions…love may just be around the corner, just in time for Christmas!

Experience the holidays with the Plain folk of Apple Ridge, Pennsylvania, in these touching novellas centered around love, romance, heartache, and restoration from best-selling author Cindy Woodsmall.
Christmas in Apple Ridge is a three-in-one collection that includes The Sound of Sleigh BellsThe Christmas Singing, and an all-new story, The Dawn of Christmas.

The Sound of Sleigh Bells
Beth Hertzler is unable to let go of a past tragedy, but when she discovers a large, intricately carved scene of Amish children playing in the snow, something deep inside Beth’s soul responds. Determined that her niece meet the gifted artist, her aunt tracks him down, but it’s not that simple – will Jonah be able to offer Beth the sleigh ride she’s always dreamed of and a second chance at real love?

The Christmas Singing
Mattie thought her childhood sweetheart adored her until he abruptly ended their engagement on Christmas Eve. Brokenhearted, Mattie moves away and pursues her longtime dream of becoming a cake decorator, and even finds a new beau. But when Mattie is forced to return home three years later, will learning the truth behind Gideon’s rejection restore her Christmas joy – or open the door to even deeper heartbreak?

The Dawn of Christmas
Sadie enjoys her freedom away from home and her mission trips to Peru, but after four years, her Old Order Amish family insists it’s time to come home and settle down. Levi, a bachelor who distrusts women after a family heartbreak, also has no desire for romance. To keep their families from meddling in their lives, Sadie and Levi devise a plan—but soon discover that the walls around their hearts are breaking down. Can they let go of their prejudices, learn to trust each other, and embrace a future together?

My Thoughts:

What could be better than an Amish Christmas story by Cindy Woodsmall?  How about three Amish Christmas stories by Cindy Woodsmall?

As always, Cindy quickly draws you into touching stories in the lives of Old Order Amish characters.  In each of these stories there are struggles related to some kind of heartache from the past mixed with the chance for romance and joy in the present and future.  Obstacles often appear too big to be overcome, but special things always seem to come together at Christmas time.  Although these novellas do not have to be read as a series, it is fun to see characters carry over from one story to the next.

Cindy has such a heart for authenticity in her stories, and her love for the Plain people shines through in this trio of stories as it does in everything she writes.  I would highly recommend this collection for anyone who is a fan of Amish fiction or of feel-good Christmas stories in general.

If you have read the first two stories as previously published books, you will find The Dawn of Christmas only in this three-in-one edition.  The publisher is, however, offering the collection in a very affordable paperback.

Thank you to the Blogging for Books program which provided me this book for free in exchange for my honest review.

View the book trailer below:

Cindy Woodsmall is a New York Times and CBA best-selling author of ten works of fiction and one work of nonfiction, whose connection with the Amish community has been featured widely in national media and throughout Christian news outlets. She lives outside Atlanta with her family.

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