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.
This historical, fact-based book is filled with a lot of info to keep it interesting and a story line that is sure to keep the reader wanting to know more. Suitable for those in upper elementary school and up, it did keep my interest and I even researched more into other reports and writings of the actual event. This is a good book that could be part of a family discussion. (I think Family Book Club meetings and discussions are a wonderful activity!) With its strong focus on faith and family, plus the glimpse of another time in our nation's past, it is a book I recommend. Some parts may be a bit much for imaginative children, but the violence and scarier details are toned down.
I want to thank FlyBy Promotions for giving me a copy of this book for review purposes. I was only required to give an honest review, and all opinions are my own.
In this story that takes us back in time to the beginning of the French and Indian War we travel to the beautiful and peaceful Blue Mountains of Pennsylvania. There Tracy Leininger Craven introduces us to two of her brave ancestors, Barbara and Regina Leininger. During this peaceful time with the Indians no one would have dreamed the unimaginable horrors that were on the way to this quiet area.
This story tells us how these two precious girls were taken captive after their father and brother was killed trying to protect them. Sometime after they were taken they were separated and neither knew if the other had survived. But the memories of their family and their faith and trust in God sustained them through those horrible years. During this time they both remembered the scripture they were taught and the beautiful hymns their mother would sing to them.
This story is one of a deep faith in God which these girls learned from a very young age. It is a faith that kept them through their darkest hours when they were snatched from their family and it kept them through the long years they were held in captivity.
While reading this story I found myself being drawn in by the way in which Tracy tells it. Her details are very good and I found that I was able to picture the scenes as I read them. I was deeply moved while reading it; it brought me to tears reading what they had to endure and then to utmost joy to know these young ladies, even at the cost of their own lives, never gave up their faith in God and His power to deliver. Thank you Tracy for sharing this powerful story with us.
I was given a copy of this book by Zondervan in exchange for my honest opinion.