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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Book Review: The Wounded Heart by Adina Senft

Delightful read - I was captured and engaged from the beginning to the end by this book.
by Adina Senft
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: FaithWords (September 27, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0892968540
  • ISBN-13: 978-0892968541
     Genre: Inspirational
     My Rating: 5.0 of 5.0

Product Description
When a business offer turns into something more personal, Amelia is torn between what logic tells her is right, and the desire of her heart.

A widow with two small children, Amelia Beiler is struggling to make ends meet. She is running her late husband's business, but it's not what she was raised to do, which is run a home. When she gets an offer for the business from Eli Fischer, she's only too relieved to consider it-especially when it looks like Eli's interest might include more than just the shop. But when she begins to experience strange physical symptoms and is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, it's difficult not to question God's will. If she pursues the treatment she believes in, she risks going under the bann. But how can she allow Eli to court her when she can't promise him a future?

Review: This story is absolutely wonderful with charming writing, characters to love and a real to life story.

Amelia is an Amish widow with two small sons and her late husband’s business to manage.  She knows it is awkward in her community to have a woman running a business but the circumstances placed her in that capacity, not her own wishes or actions.  Yes, she may have learned to be a bit more independent having to make decisions as the head of her household and business.

She is surprised when an Englisch man offers to buy the pallet business. Then another Amish man, Eli, shows interest not only in the business but in her personally. However Amelia has just been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. She faces being on medicine, which may only delay the deterioration of her muscle control, for the rest of her life, or she could raise the significant amount necessary to try some experimental treatment in Mexico. But it appears that the church elders do not approve of the experimental treatment nor do they approve of her selling her business to an outsider.

Amelia shares a quilting group with two wonderful friends, Emma and Carrie, who have their own issues. They try to give her sound advise while she also receives advise from her mother and father.  Amelia struggles with finding God’s Will and balancing her choices within the dictates of the elders of her church family.

The phrasing and writing is charming and smoothly reflects the Amish community. There are all the elements one might expect in an Amish story including a dedicated faith, community order, simple - if hard - living, close families and real friendships. There are also the struggles of balancing the worldly input and practices with the Amish life-style. Amelia’s thought dilemmas are so natural. The story is not in any way preachy as it is instead portrays a daily, living faith.

I will be eagerly looking forward to reading the stories for Emma and Carrie as the trilogy continues! The book includes the instructions for the quilt the ladies are working on. There is also a group discussion guide.

Here are two short quotes of many that I liked:
(Amelia responded to the laughter of her sons)
She needed to follow their innocent example and find joy in the little things. P 206

(Eli approaching Amelia again after learning the updated status of her illness.)
But the driver had turned sideways in his seat and was gazing at her with all the hope of harvest in his face. P282

I will be recommending this to my book club as I know everyone would enjoy it. Also I am going to let my daughter read it before I add my copy to the giveaway box. :-)

Thank you to Hachette Center Street for this book to review and for offering a copy for Giveaway!

TO ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY for the book copy:
1. Visit the author's website and tell me something of interest you found there. This is required for entry.

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It isn't necessary to use separate entries unless you want them in different chronological order.
(Six total entries possible.)

* Open to the US & Canada only.
* No PO boxes, please.
* This contest will close 10 PM (Central) on October 14, 2011. (This month's book giveaways will all end on the 30th except for Friday Picks, SBB or other special posts.)
The winner will be randomly selected from all entries.
Winners will have 72 hours to respond by email or the winners form linked in the announcement.

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