About the Book-
A fresh start in the New World will test Anna’s resolve . . . and her heart.
In 1737, Anna Konig staggers off a small wooden ship after ten weeks at sea, eager to start a new life in the vibrant but raw Pennsylvania frontier. It’s a time of new beginnings, and for Anna and Bairn’s shipboard romance to bloom.
But this perfect moment cannot last. As Bairn grasps the reality of what it means to be Amish in the New World, his enthusiasm evaporates. When a ship captain offers him a first mate position, he grabs it. Just one more crossing, he promises Anna. But will she wait for him?
As a newcomer joins the church, Anna is torn. This man is everything Bairn is not–bold, devoted, and delighted to vie for her heart. And he is here. Bairn is not.
Far from the frontier, an unexpected turn of events weaves the lives of Bairn, Anna, and the newcomer together. When the secret is revealed, which true love will emerge?
First of all, this is most certainly an Amish book that breaks several stereotypes! First, it’s set in the 1730’s, which is far from the standard modern-ish feel. Second, as a result of this, there is none of the buggy-riding, courting, singings, and all that. Instead, it’s a travelling-westward kind of story, which is really cool.
I appreciated this book much more than most other Amish fiction (though admittedly I don’t read much Amish fiction as a rule) because it’s much more realistic.
While yes, there still are some touches of romance, it’s not the main focus of the book. There is not only love between a guy and a girl, there is also love between a man and his wife, and the siblings within a family, and people and God. This was really refreshing.
Overall, the Amish portrayed in this book were much more realistic than the other Amish novels that I’ve read, which makes me want to read more by Suzanne Woods Fisher . . . not sure how her other novels are like though. These Christians are much more authentic, not the pure, unblemished, but-under-the-surface-there’s-problems, kind of book that most books portray.
Apparently this was the second book in a series, but I didn’t know at the time. The characters were all pretty well introduced, and I didn’t feel like I was starting in the middle of a series too much (although I was confuzed with a couple characters in the beginning, but that’s just because I’m bad at character names in books in general).
As for the characters, I really liked how they were developed. As I’ve mentioned, I’m pretty bad at actually identifying and differentiating between characters as I read: they all become mashed together in my mind, but these characters each had their own personality: Anna, Bairn, Felix, the awful dog, and Dorothea (as well as many more).
Overall, this was a great book! It was a bit on the slower side, but that didn’t bother me much. I know I’ve already said it about 143980437 times above, but it was really good simply because it wasn’t the typical Amish romance novel. It was more of a Christian Laura Ingalls Wilder Amish book, and I really appreciated that.
Thank you to Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, for sending me a free print copy in exchange for my honest review; I was not required to write a positive review.