By Kathryn Cushman
My very first impression of this book was, "Wow, this is different! Is it REALLY an Amish story?" Well, I was correct, it is very unusual , in that the main characters are NOT Amish. That immediately grabbed my interest, as this is not the norm for the Amish genre. But it is truly a book that involves the Amish and their lifestyle in a very imaginative way.
Kathryn Cushman has once again written a heartwarming story of plain living- with unique twists and turns, creating a life which is very inconvenient yet it is a simple lifestyle. She teaches us lessons in a most unusual way- challenging a normal Englisch family to take on the life of a typical Amish family in an Amish community. This family is forced to take a second look at life and the blessings that can be discovered in simple living. I was spellbound from beginning to end of this book , as I was never sure what would happen next. The characters are realistic, with everyday problems, as we have, but are forced in this situation to deal with them , as the Amish would, not as they would in their own English world. Kathryn's plot is so well developed that you feel with the family- their hurts, confusion, then acceptance and finally peace.
Synopsis: Julie Charlton is at the breaking point. She is a frustrated wife and mother. Although , she realizes that she should feel blessed, she does not! Just exhausted , feeling she can no longer cope with life. Then, an opportunity arrives that appears to be a miracle. Her sister-in-law, Susan, lands a chance to participate in a new reality TV show about trying to live like the Amish. HOWEVER, here is the important part!! She needs another family to join here. This is just that break that Julie believes will meet her current needs.
But this summer adventure is certainly NOT simple living. There are TV cameras filming, watching every move . Susan is a perfectionist and strives to have every move as it should be , in her city life, not as it actually is in Amish country. While she becomes more and more frustrated, Julie begins to find the peace she has desired for so long. She has to stand up Susan, as well as the filming crew and boss, explaining the need to slow down. Whether it is cleaning, cooking or dressing differently, each Amish challenge causes more complicated feelings and results.
This book is truly one which shows us how we need to learn about ourselves, our needs and our place with God. Who is going to do the planning? Humans or the Heavenly Father???
The children all go through different stages of rebellion, then acceptance. A true to life family experience that would be valuable to all of us. Julie's feeling of success instead of the former feeling of always failing is the result of following peaceful, faithful lifestyle of the Plain People.
Wow!! A great book that can teach all of us something, young and old alike!! I can hardly wait for another new book by Kathryn.
"Book has been provided courtesy of Bethany House and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available now from your favourite bookseller."