Two Amish Collections – Combined Review!

I realized during the beginning of my vacation that I had two Amish novella collections that I never read. GASP! That is rare in my house, and the fact that one of them was from June was completely unacceptable. So, I made it my mission to get them read and fast! I loved them both, and found myself flying through each novella. Honestly, it made me feel even worse about it. So, to the wonderful authors of these novellas, I am sorry for the delay! Not my intention at all, and trust me when I say I am usually on top of this sort of thing.

So to make up for lost time, I’m doing a double review today. I hope you enjoy!

About An Amish Summer

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A Reunion in Pinecraft by Shelley Shepard Gray

When sisters Sharon and Sherilyn Kramer attend a wedding in Shipshewana, one of them returns with a new penpal while the other returns to her job at the bakery. After sending weekly letters back and forth, Sherry and Graham Holland arrange a reunion in Pinecraft. Upon Graham’s arrival, however, he realizes he’s been writing to the wrong sister. He decides to use the reunion as a way to get to know both sisters, but can he sort through the confusion in time to turn the worst vacation ever into something truly wonderful?

Summer Storms by Amy Clipston

Ariana is counting down the days until her wedding to Jesse. They have been friends longer than Arianna can remember, and that friendship turned into love over the past couple of years. But when Arianna’s brother Tobias, who happens to be Jesse’s best friend, gets them both into trouble, Arianna’s father puts an end to her engagement to Jesse. Some summer storms pass quickly, but Arianna is afraid the damage from this one may be too much to repair.

Lakeside Love by Kathleen Fuller

Esther has always lived in the shadow of her beautiful younger sister Sarah. Even the boy she has known—and loved—her entire life, Judah, only has eyes for Sarah. But when a handsome young Englischer comes to live with the family for a summer, everything begins to change.

One Sweet Kiss by Kelly Irvin

Everybody in little Bee County, Texas, can see the obvious: Jacob King and Martha Byler are meant to be together. Everyone, that is, but Martha. Ever since her mother died when Martha was a young girl, she has taken over the role of caregiver to her large family. And reckless Jacob, who has had a little too much fun on his rumspringa, only seems to add to the list of people to manage. But one summer changes everything, and these two may just find a way to meet in the middle and share one sweet kiss.

My Perspective

A Reunion in Pinecraft

I’m still chuckling over the fact that Graham got the sisters mixed up! I think that was a clever plot for the story. Thankfully Toby was around to charm one of the sisters, otherwise Graham would have found himself in a huge pickle! But what I enjoyed most about this story was the message. You cannot judge a book by its cover, you have to start reading the pages. Something that can be mediocre on the outside can be quite exquisite on the inside. A lesson and great reminder for us all.

Summer Storms

This novella reminds me that we are all just human, even the Amish (gasp!). We, as outsiders, tend to think that Amish people do not deal with certain issues like we do. Almost like they are immune to them. The truth is that they really do. They have all sorts of problems, just like us. What may be different is the way we handle the problems. This novella was a beautiful example of that. It was not just a love story. I was a story of family, friendship, and how important these relationships are.

Lakeside Love

Sometimes people have a hard time seeing what’s right in front of them. Judah was so sure he needed and wanted Sarah in his life. So much so that he couldn’t see something wonderful right in front of him – Esther. Sure, Sarah was beautiful on the outside, but Esther was beautiful on the inside, where it really counts. I loved seeing Judah an Esther blossom and come together, developing this strong relationship without even knowing it.

One Sweet Kiss

This was a great ending to this group of novellas. It was fun! People were doing stuff wrong, getting into trouble, acting immature. The story reminds us that we all need to grow up at some point, but maybe not too much. After all, I think Jacob will always have a bit of childish qualities in him, and that’s ok. It is what makes him Jacob. But the important part for Jacob was understanding when to have that, and when to act mature.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

About An Amish Christmas Love
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Winter Kisses by Beth Wiseman

Three generations of Stoltzfus women are all living under the same roof. At twenty-five, Naomi has never been married, and both her mother, Barbara, and her grandmother, Ruth, have recently been widowed. Each nursing broken or lonely hearts, they also each have potential suitors. When a storm on Christmas Eve forces the three couples to take shelter in the basement of the Stotlzfus homestead, secrets are revealed, hearts are opened, and all three potential grooms drop to their knees for very different reasons—a proposal, a prayer, and an epiphany.

The Christmas Cat by Amy Clipston

Emma Bontrager is spending her first Christmas alone after her husband of 45 years, Henry, passed away in July. Although the Amish don’t normally allow animals in their homes, a big, fat, orange barn cat keeps coming into Emma’s house. She shoos the cat away, but it continues to appear in her house, settling on Henry’s favorite wingchair. But the cat isn’t the only Christmas visitor: a group of young people help bring the Christmas spirit to Emma, reminding her that love and hope abide.

Snow Angels by Kelly Irvin

As a young man enjoying his rumspringa, David Byler gave his heart to an Englisch girl, but he eventually realized he couldn’t give up his Plain faith and family for her, so he let her go. He’s found a new love in his Bee County Plain community, Molly Shrock. Molly has been patient, waiting for the man she loves to love her back. Just as he is ready to propose, David makes a startling discovery: Bobbie McGregor, his Englisch love, is back. Will Molly’s prayers for a Christmas love be answered?

Home for Christmas by Ruth Reid

When a misdirected GPS sends Ellie Whetstone to the wrong address, she inadvertently finds herself breaking into the home of Amish man, Ezra Mast. Ellie hopes to fix up the house left by her aenti and sell it quickly, but a series of run-ins with Ezra and his young daughter have her questioning whether a hasty sale is the right move. Could this new place with its slower pace be the right home for Ellie?

My Perspective

Winter Kisses

It must be hard to get a good love story in the length of a novella. Let me just say, Beth Wiseman can handle it. In fact, she can handle 3! Yep, I said it, 3. You get three sweet love stories in this novella, one for each generation represented. It was fun and charming. Ruth brought so much excitement to the storyline. I found her to be a delight to read and very refreshing as an elder character. This is a novella that both young and old will enjoy.

The Christmas Cat

It is not surprise that Amy Clipston would write a story with a cat, knowing her love for them! And while the cat was cute and fun, I truly found this to be a beautiful love story. Most Amish fiction concentrates on current characters. This story focused on an elder Amish woman sharing her love story with four young people. Yes there was heartache. Yes there was struggles. But this was a powerful love story that will stay with me for a long time. This is a definite re-read!

Snow Angels

First, I loved the setting of this story. I don’t think I’ve seen too many Amish stories in southern Texas! Second, I loved Lupe and Diego. Though not main characters, they brought fun and wonder to the story. Seeing things such as snow was so new and foreign to them, and I found their point of view fresh and inspiring. And third, the David/Molly/Bobbie triangle was very entertaining. I don’t want to spoil the ending, but I will say that it left me one satisfied reader.

Home for Christmas

What a sweet yet heart wrenching story. Allison and Lulu absolutely stole the show on this one. Both girl and dog had my heart from the very beginning, and I could tell I was in for a ride with them. It proved that people and dogs really do have a connection, something I’ve always believed in. This wasn’t just a love story between Ellie and Ezra, although I enjoyed reading about them. It was more of a story about what it means to be a good neighbor, and learning to find your own way. It was the perfect ending to this novella collection.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.


1 thought on “Two Amish Collections – Combined Review!

  1. What a great collection of authors. Both of these books sound great. I love novellas like this because it’s easier to fit in short stories instead of full books!

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