Never Far From Home, Miller Family Series #2Never Far From Home, Miller Family Series #2
Mary Ellis
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Interview, Excerpt

In Never Far From Home, fifteen-year-old Emma Miller finishes school, starts her own wool business, and is longing for someone to court. When the object of her affection is a handsome English sheep farmer, with a fast truck and modern methods, her deacon father, Simon, knows he has more than the farm alliance to worry about.

Emma isn't the only one with longings in Holmes County. Her aunt Hannah wants a baby and her uncle Seth hopes he'll reap financial rewards when he takes a risk with his harvest. But are these the dreams God has for this Amish family? With engaging interactions and thoughtful characters, Ellis weaves a story about waiting for God's timing and discovering that the dreams planted close to home can grow a lasting harvest of hope and love.


 Never Far From Home Discussion Questions: Mary Ellis


1) Why is Simon nervous about Emma’s dye-making and increased grapevine wreath production?


2) Why does Hannah get so angry with Seth over her sheep?


3) What is Julia’s true reason for encouraging Emma to start attending Sunday Singings?


4) Why does Hannah feel she’s caught in the middle between her sister, Julia, and her niece, Emma, during the girl’s rumschpringe?


5) Seth sees a way to make his farm more profitable—how could that conflict with traditional Amish ways?


6) Emma had been so eager to visit James’ English farm. What turned the visit sour for her?


7) The Bible is clear about a husband’s place as head-of-household. How does this challenge Seth and Hannah’s marriage when he decides to plant all corn?


8) Hannah shows growth as a Christian when she seeks advice from Simon, her deacon. How is Simon’s behavior out of character, and why does he start to question his ability to effectively counsel?


9) Why can’t Emma understand James’ decision to attend college?



10) James sees nothing wrong with his “gift” to Emma, while Simon blows his stack. In what ways is Julia’s idea a good compromise?


11) When Emma realizes she could never turn “English”, how does that doom her relationship with James?


12) How does financial tribulation change Seth as a man and a Christian? How does it affect their marriage?


13) Why is Hannah so afraid to believe she’s pregnant?


14) How is James’ “solution” perfect for everyone involved?


15) How does Emma’s forethought in waiting to be baptized show greater wisdom and maturity than commonplace for someone her age?



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