Friday, August 26, 2011

Healing Hearts by Beth Wiseman: A book review

This is a collection of three previously published novellas. 

The first of the three, ‘A Choice to Forgive’ is centered around Lydia, a widow with three children. Her husband, Elam, dies after fifteen years of marriage.  His brother, Daniel, who had been shunned and living with the English, returns two years after his death.  Lydia was engaged to Daniel, but he left her with very little explanation.  His brother, Elam becomes her good friend and she eventually falls in love with him and marries him.  When Daniel, returns, he brings with him questions and secrets.  Lydia struggles with long lost feelings and we see her try to forgive Daniel. 

The second novella is ‘A Change of Heart’. This story is about Leah, a young woman who wants to be a writer.  However, young Amish girls are not encouraged in such endeavors. Leah’s father wants her to learn to be a good frau, but Leah has no interest at all in cooking, cleaning or sewing.  Aaron, a young Amish man, becomes interested in Leah and a romance develops.  There is conflict, love, mystery, humor and forgiveness in this story.  I found this to be my favorite of the three.  There is also a delightful character named Ruth, Aaron’s aunt, who left the community before she was baptized. She returns for a visit and adds some very humorous, touching and enjoyable moments.

The third story is ‘Healing Hearts’.  I have read this before in another collection. “Healing Hearts” is unusual in that the main characters are not a young couple discovering love. Rather, its about a married couple married for more than 30 years suffering from the empty nest syndrome and working to rediscover the love that they had when they were young. The husband, Naaman, has come home after leaving his family for a year.  His older children are not as forgiving as his younger children and his wife struggles with trying to be the wife she feels God wants her to be and her own feelings of doubt and resentment.  This is a story of forgivness and rediscovered love.

All three stories were enjoyable and uplifting.  They are easy, fun and clean reading and will keep you captivated until the end. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from BookSneeze and Thomas Nelson through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

From the Thomas Nelson web site:

Healing Hearts

A Collection of Amish Romances

Trade Paper

Three hope-filled stories about second chances, trusting your heart, and the power of forgiveness.

Healing Hearts—Empty-nesters Levina Lapp and her husband Naaman have no children under their roof for the first time in 30 years. When Naaman leaves to visit cousins in Ohio, Levina never expected him to be gone a year. Now that he's back, will they be able to move beyond this estrangement and rekindle the fire of the love they once shared?

A Change of Heart—Leah is a writer in a community that does not encourage such fruitless endeavors. She lacks the skills necessary to be a good Amish fraa—cooking, cleaning, quilting, and gardening. Aaron is aware of Leah's short-comings, but his heart is captured by this spirited young woman. Will Leah's role as an Amish wife and mother force her to set aside her creative life—or will Aaron make an offer she never dreamed was possible?

A Choice to Forgive—Lydia has loved two men in her life. Daniel, who disappeared one Christmas Eve long ago, leaving only a note saying he wanted to live in the Englisch world. And Elam, Daniel's brother, to whom she had been happily married for 15 years. When Elam dies, Lydia gives up on ever loving again. But she is shocked when Daniel wants to return to the Order and her life. Is there enough forgiveness in her heart to overlook the past and move into a future that could fulfill her dreams?

1 comment:

  1. Oh those sound really great, I would imagine then would be available from the local library...

    Thanks for the reviews


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