Alone Yet Not Alone
Alone Yet Not Alone is a compelling story of faith and endurance. The story of Barbara and Regina Leininger and the other young captives is terrifying and at the same time inspiring. It is hard to imagine ones so young experiencing what they did and not only surviving it but thriving in the aftermath.
The fact that this story is based on a true-life account makes this book all the more appealing to me. I think it would be a great read for tweens and older. It does have depictions of murder and even someone being burned at the stake. The descriptions contained in the book are not gory in the least but they do describe what is happening. If you are going to present it to younger children I would suggest pre-reading first to determine suitability.
This would make an excellent addition to a book club or a homeschool group. The book contains some very thought provoking discussion questions at the end. A movie based on this book is due to release in theaters on June 13, 2014. Because movies have a tendency to change things up a bit I think it would be a wonderful idea to read the book with your kids before you see the movie.
I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
May 23, 2014
Historically rich details
Alone Yet Not Alone by Tracy Leininger that sweeps readers back to the autumn of 1755 where we meet the Leininger family, German Immigrants who have come to America looking for a new life. They settle in the Blue Mountains of PA that overlook Penn's Creek. The family of six consists of Ma and Pa along with Christian,John, Barbara, and Regina. Their faith in God is strong, and they are very thankful for all their good fortune, which includes living peacefully among the Indians.With the French-Indian War brewing though things change dramatically and one afternoon two Indian braves barge into the cabin and kidnap Barbara who is twelve and Regina age nine. The girls are soon separated and taken far from home, but they never give up hope that someday they will be together again!
What an amazing story of faith and family, and what makes this book even better is that it is based on a true story. The author does a wonderful job of bringing the characters to life within the pages of this story. I became swept up in the saga that the girls faced, and often wondered how or if they would ever be reunited with their mother. The author's attention to detail made the various scenes pop off the pages, I could easily envision the settings, whether it was the cabin, or an Indian village, the richness of detail allowed me to feel as if I was part of the story instead of just reading it. A great read for young and old alike, especially anyone who enjoys history. An easy to read story that is certainly reminds readers of the importance of never wavering in your faith in knowing that God is always with us even in our darkest hour.
A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review.
April 29, 2014
Ã¢ÂÂAlone Yet Not AloneÃ¢ÂÂ by Tracy Leininger Craven
This is the true story of the Leininger Family, devout Christians, who had immigrated to America from Germany. The Leiningers purchased land from the Indians, built a cabin and began farming. The family often talked of the hardships faced in Germany before coming to this new land. They gave God the credit for getting them through the difficulties they faced. Their father told the children everyone has trials in their lives, but the thing that would help them, and could never be taken from them, was their faith in Jesus Christ. Every evening the family memorized a Bible verse, and they often sang hymns. One of their favorites was Ã¢ÂÂAlone Yet Not Alone.Ã¢ÂÂ The entire family liked to sing, but they called Regina, the youngest, their Ã¢ÂÂlittle song birdÃ¢ÂÂ since she loved to sing.
This book takes place in 1755 during the French and Indian War. At that time, the Native Americans had sided with the French, and because of that, believed all the agreements with the white settlers were over. The Indians began systematically burning cabins, killing the adults and taking the children as slaves. That is what happened one fateful day to the Leininger family. Their mother and son, John, had gone to the mill when the cabin was attacked. Their father and oldest son, Christian, were killed in their home, while sisters, Barbara and Regina, were captured and drug away by a band of warriors.
The book recounts the mistreatment the girls suffered at the hands of their captors. They were made to be slaves, and ultimately the sisters were separated. The many stolen children were divided up between the warriors who were from different trips. Barbara, the oldest, was taken by the son of an Indian chief back to his village. It was a trip of hundreds of miles that was all done on foot. Regina was taken away by a Native American from another tribe. Barbara fought to keep her sister with her, but to no avail. The last thing Barbara told Regina was to keep her faith in Jesus. She also told her to never forget that or ReginaÃ¢ÂÂs favorite song, Ã¢ÂÂAlone, Yet Not AloneÃ¢ÂÂÃ¢ÂÂto keep them always in her heart.
The story tells of the trials and hardships faced by Barbara, as well as that of the other white people who had been taken captive. The Native Americans forced them to rub black walnut juice on their skin and hair so it would not be obvious they were white people. The lack of food caused the white captives to often go to bed hungry, despite working hard all day. Barbara prayed constantly for Regina and her to be reunited, and for a way for them to escape. As the years went by, Barbara kept her faith, but then she discovered that the Indian brave who captured her was planning to make her his wife in the spring. Barbara was in a panic because she knew if she became his wife, her chance for escape would probably be over.
This book is based on a true story, and is very exciting to read. It is an uplifting saga of Barbara keeping her faith, and holding on to her conviction that eventually she would make it back home. This work is the heritage of author who is a descendant of the Leininger family.
A movie with the same title as the book will be released in June 2014. I received a CD of the filmÃ¢ÂÂs soundtrack as well. The theme song of the movie, Ã¢ÂÂAlone Yet Not Alone,Ã¢ÂÂ is brilliantly sung by Joni Erickson Tada. Although the book is geared to eight-year-olds and up, anyone who likes action, adventure or true stories should like this 5-star tale and movie.
Ã¢ÂÂDisclosure (in accordance with the FTCÃ¢ÂÂs 16 CFR, Part 255: Ã¢ÂÂGuides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising): This book was published by Zonderkidz. Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. All opinions expressed are my own, and I have not been compensated in any other manner. Despite my receiving the book and CD free, it has not influenced my judgment, and I have given an honest opinion.
April 28, 2014
True story of faith and survival!
What does it really mean to have faith even when you fear God has turned His back on you? Is it possible to hold onto the thing you were taught as a child in order to endure a future you never thought possible? Such are the questions author Tracy Leininger Craven hopes to stir in the reader's soul in her novel Alone, Yet Not Alone based on the true story accounts from Tracy's family.
Just as the Leininger family had begun a new start in life in Pennsylvania during 1755 after leaving behind the persecution in Germany, all they knew is that faith had gotten them through the worst of times. What they now had was their faith in God, freedom and a chance to begin to establish new traditions and raising their family in belief of God's promises. As Barbara and Regina, 12 and 9, were watching over lunch preparations on their family farm, two Indians showed up unannounced in their small cabin. Believing that no violence would be necessary, Barbara's father sends the two girls to the stream for fresh water, while hoping the Indians will just take the tobacco offered and leave.
Little did Barbara and Regina know but their father and older brother would be killed, the cabin burned to the ground, and they would be carted off to join countless other white woman and young children as Indian captives during the French-Indian War. Believing their father's promised to never lose sight of God in any situation, they encourage one another through the words of Barbara's favorite song, Alone, Yet Not Alone. She inspires this kind of courage and faith in her younger sister that no matter what God will never leave them alone and that one day, they would be reunited with their mother and brother who had gone to town that day and escaped the family's brutal murder.
The one thing Barbara could never imagine is having her sister Regina, taken from her and being carted off to another Indian tribe. Now all she could do was pray for their safety and for a way to escape when the time came. Her only ally was a childhood friend, Marie, whom she grew up with as a neighbor and between the two found solace in encouraging one another in their prayers and faith. Barbara was fortunate that her Indian captor seemed to have a kindness and gentleness about him that provided her with a safety net of sorts as she was taught the warriors ways of living, including dyeing their faces, wearing warrior clothes and adopting the Allegheny ways of worship. But could she give up the belief her family raised her to know about the one true God?
I received Alone, Yet Not Alone by Tracy Leininger Craven compliments of Zonderkidz, a division of Zondervan Publishers and Media Connect for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation for a favorable review and the opinions expressed are strictly my own. This novel is coming to movie theater soon based on the events captured in this novel based on true events. Tracy Leininger Craven emphasizes that it was that faith in God that kept Barbara and Regina together when they were miles apart, and that some hope that stayed within their hearts long after they finally escaped to freedom. This is the story that will strike a cord in those that feel deserted and through this story you will find living proof that the power of God's love withstands the test of time in any situation. I easily give this one a 4.5 out of 5 stars and am looking forward to seeing this in the movies.
April 21, 2014