Saturday, May 25, 2019

Great Collection of Stories -- An Amish Homecoming

An Amish Homecoming is another great collection of Amish stories by some of the best authors. Each story stands on its own, but they all share the theme of someone having suffered some sort of difficulty and finding themselves needing to go back home for comfort, strength, and/or a fresh start.

This set of novellas, like so many others, gives several benefits to readers. For some, it is a chance to try out a new author before deciding to invest in full-length novels. For established fans of Amish fiction, some of the stories provide a chance to revisit characters from other series by the authors. And for any reader, the shorter length provides a bite-sized reading opportunity, each of which can often be finished in one sitting.

I highly recommend An Amish Homecoming to fans of good Amish fiction.

Thanks to BookLook Bloggers for providing a copy of the book. I am happy to provide my own thoughts in this review.

About the Book:

Four brand new Amish stories of coming home.

No Place Like Home by Amy Clipston
Estranged daughter Eva Dienner has been staying with her in-laws, the Riehls, since her husband was killed in a fire, but now she wants her son to meet his maternal grandparents. Upon her return, Eva finds that the man her parents always intended for her is living in their daadihaus and running the dairy farm for them for free, despite her suspicions of him taking advantage of her family. Eva knows she should put the past behind her, but is she ready to move into the future?

When Love Returns by Beth Wiseman
Hurricane Harvey forces Sarah Zook to return to the home she fled six years ago when she couldn’t face her stern parents’ reaction to her unplanned pregnancy. Upon her return, Abram King can think of nothing but the pain she caused him—until he meets Sarah’s daughter and realizes that he never really stopped loving Sarah. Sarah and Abram must find a way to face the truth of their past so they can rekindle their first love.

The Courage to Love by Shelley Shepard Gray
After the death of her Englisch husband, Irene Keim seeks a fresh start by staying with her new friends Mary Ruth and Henry Wengerd in exchange for helping them around the house. But when Mary Ruth and Henry’s son Marcus comes around, he isn’t pleased with the woman they’ve taken in and is determined to push her out. Misunderstandings abound, but both Irene and Marcus learn that people aren’t always what they seem.

What Love Built by Kathleen Fuller
Independent and headstrong, Carolyn is determined to forge ahead with the opening of her bakery, a lifelong dream, in the Birch Creek home she left ten years ago. But she’s in over her head and needs help with the cleaning, shopping, and deliveries. Carpenter Atlee Shetler is visiting Birch Creek to escape the memories of his late wife. He takes a job renovating the new bakery and finds the project—and its owner—to be much more than he bargained for. Both Carolyn and Atlee must face pains of the past if they want to have the bright future God has planned for them.

Enjoyable Conclusion -- A Faithful Gathering

Leslie Gould finishes her Sisters of Lancaster County series with another enjoyable story in A Faithful Gathering

As in the previous books, the story highlights one of the Bachmann sisters but also involves details of other family members. The present-day decisions that must be made are impacted by the ongoing story of Bachmann relatives from generations past. The lives of characters from both time periods provide an engaging story filled with complex details.

I highly recommend this book, as well as the entire series, to fans of great Amish fiction. The story could work as a stand alone but is more enjoyably read as a series conclusion

Thanks to the author and her publisher for providing a copy of A Faithful Gathering. I am happy to share my own thoughts in this review.

About the Book:

When Each Tomorrow Brings Unexpected Challenges,
Can She Keep Hoping for the Future She Envisions?

Leisel Bachmann left her Amish roots and beloved sisters to pursue a career in nursing without a second thought. She and her English boyfriend, Nick Jordan, have big dreams for their future, but those dreams come crashing down when her sister Marie is diagnosed with cancer.

Soon nothing is going as she planned--not her state boards, not her first nursing job, and certainly not her relationship with Nick. As she becomes increasingly discouraged, her aunt shares the story of Leisel's grandfather during World War II and the struggle he faced between returning to Lancaster or being with the woman he loved.

Peace and direction for the future are difficult to find, and when Nick leaves Pennsylvania to pursue an unexpected career path without talking it through with Leisel, she is faced with impossible choices. Will she stay in Lancaster, close to her family and the traditions of her past? Or will her grandfather's story encourage her to embrace a life of love and service in an uncertain future?

About the Author:

Leslie Gould is the coauthor, with Mindy Starns Clark, of the #1 bestselling The Amish Midwife and The Amish Nanny. She is also the author of numerous novels including two Lancaster Amish series. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Portland State University and has taught fiction writing at Multnomah University as an adjunct professor. She resides with her husband and four children in Oregon. Learn more at