By Ruth Reid
He doesn't plan to stay Amish. She doesn't have a plan. Then an angel draws their hearts toward God . . . and each other.
A buggy-racing champion, a hardworking field-hand, and a terrible cook, Rachel Hartzler does not fit her Amish community's standards for an eligible bride. Hurt by their rejection and still grieving the loss of her brother, Rachel is ready for change. She's not, however, ready for Jordan Engles. Rachel's father hired him to help tend the fields so Rachel can learn to cook and sew, thus increasing her chances of finding a husband. She can't understand why her father doesn't want her help and blames Jordan for trying to replace her beloved brother. Jordan plans for his time on the Michigan farm to be short. Before his mother passed away, he promised her he'd give her Amish roots a chance. Upon her death, uncertain about what else to do, he came to stay with his Uncle Isaac in Hope Falls. He's curious why his mother left the community she obviously loved. But it doesn't take Jordan long to conclude that the strict lifestyle and the three hour church services are not for him. But there isn't just human interaction at play. Nathaniel, an angel of God, sees the potential in Jordan and Rachel's hearts from heaven's perspective. His goal is to shepherd them toward the path of healing and love. When tragedy strikes, then strikes again, this angelic being is sent to guide them toward the healing and abundant life promised in God's Word - if only they will listen.
I have read a lot of Amish fiction novels but have never read one with angels and demons as part of the story. I'm not really sure how I feel about author's inclusion of Nathaniel the angel or Tangus the demon because they reminded me of those comics that show the red devil on one shoulder and the beautiful angel on the other - both vying for you to do what they say. We all know that there are angels and demons but we do not really know how they function in today's world. Aside from this issue, I found the story to be very interesting and one we all can relate to in some way. All Amish fiction stories are very similar but each one has something that is unique that keeps you interested if you like that genre of story - which I do! Jordan and Rachel were very believable characters and their story was wonderful. There were tragedies and difficulties to overcome but the writer was able to show the simplicity of life and how Faith overcomes all things. It was a good reminder for all Christians (or anyone) that God is always there, we should pray without ceasing, we should learn forgiveness (even of ourselves) and we should live in unity and love. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.
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