A Joyful Break

Dreams of Plain Daughters, #1

Ms. Craver penned a wonderful story within these pages. I really enjoyed getting to know her characters, but what I thoroughly enjoyed was getting to know the ways of the Amish folks. Through this story, I’ve learned so much more of their customs and their reasoning behind their beliefs. I loved being able to travel the journey Rachel Hershberger needed to take in order for her to find out if she should be baptized and join her church or possibly decide to leave her community to join the English world that her Aunt Carrie had chosen to do many years ago. Ms. Craver penned this story with such emotion that it was easy for me to feel as if the story was unfolding before me firsthand. I was seeing and feeling everything Rachel was as if I experienced it myself. I love being able to walk away from a story feeling I went through the trials and tribulations as if I was another character in it and this author did that for me with this entertaining Amish story. I highly recommend it!

Rachel Hershberger is questioning what her next step in life should be. She’s in love with Samuel Weaver, but feels that maybe she’s missing something from her life as an Amish woman. Having lost her mother just about a year ago has made Rachel question the next step in her life. During their one year customary time of mourning, she gave up her job at the local bakery shop to help cook, clean and tend to her father and brothers’ needs. Stepping in her mother’s role was the right thing for her to do at the time, but she can’t help but wonder if her family had more modern conveniences, such as a phone, would her mother be alive right now? Maybe living as an Amish woman isn’t what she thought she wanted. Maybe living as an English woman, as her Aunt Carrie did when deciding to marry a non-Amish man years ago, is the path that Rachel should take instead. Spending some time away vacationing with Aunt Carrie in Florida is just what Rachel needs to make her decision of what path she needs to take to make her happy. The question remains does Rachel decide to marry Samuel and assume her place in the Amish world or will she leave everything she has known to live as an English woman like her Aunt Carrie?

Book Blurb for A Joyful Break

After her mother’s untimely death, a twenty-year-old Amish woman has a difficult decision to make: Choose to break from the Plain community and her boyfriend and live in the English world permanently...or join the Amish church.

Rachel Hershberger wants to get away from her Amish home in Fields Corner, Ohio. For a year she’s been trying to fill her mother’s shoes by taking care of her father and siblings. She quit her job at the bakery so she would have more time to clean and cook at home. Before her mother died, Rachel was positive she wanted to marry Samuel Weaver, but now she can’t think about wedding plans. She blames her father for her mother’s death. If they had installed a phone in their barn or a shanty, her mother might have received medical help in time to save her life. Her mother’s death has made Rachel question if she should be baptized and join the church. She wonders if non-Amish women live longer and have less stress. Maybe her forty-four-year old mother would still be alive had she left the Amish lifestyle like her sister Carrie did.

When her Aunt Carrie invites her to go to the beach, Rachel decides the time away will help her to decide whether to join the Amish church or to live in the English world. She is conflicted because she loves Samuel and her family. Instead of a relaxing time away, disturbing events happen while Rachel’s in Florida. A photographer snaps troublesome pictures of Rachel because of her famous senator uncle, and a handsome and charming college student falls in love with Rachel.

Night Owl Reviews Nov, 2012 5.00