In The Christmas Quilt, Vannetta Chapman takes readers back to Mifflin County, Pennsylvania, and to the characters from her book, A Simple Amish Christmas. It was so wonderful to step back into this community and see how everyone was doing! A Simple Amish Christmas was the first book I read that was written by this author and it is one of my all time favorite books. You can read The Christmas Quilt as a stand alone book, as Mrs. Chapman has done a good job of explaining the back story. However, your reading of The Christmas Quilt will be enhanced if you will read A Simple Amish Christmas first.
There are two sets of main characters in this book. Annie and Samuel are happily married and expecting their first child (boppli). Their love has grown over the two years of their marriage and this is a very exciting time for them. Leah and Adam are the other set of main characters and really the primary focus of this story. They both love each other, but their two year marriage is struggling. The struggles began during Leah's pregnancy with twins that she is currently going through. What should be a joyous time for the couple has turned into arguments and much misunderstanding.
The author has woven into The Christmas Quilt a beautiful story of healing. Through a scary and dangerous end of her pregnancy, Leah and Annie bond even closer than before. Through stories exemplifying different fruits of the spirit, a crib quilt and a marriage are stitched back together. These well-written characters truly felt like family. I so enjoyed the stories that were told as the quilt came together. And I loved seeing the story from the different points of view of the characters. Being able to see how Leah perceived a situation versus how Adam saw it, I was able to feel compassion for both characters.
This was a wonderful book that I highly recommend to fans of Amish fiction and romance.
A sequel to "A Simple Amish Christmas", Annie and Samuel are revisited in Mifflin County, Pennsylvania. Life is busy for them as the Christmas season approaches. Added to the hustle now is Annie's friend, Leah, who is expecting her first child. Not having an easy pregnancy, troubles in her marriage and a few surprises, Leah needs Annie more than ever. Hoping to finish the crib quilt before Leah delivers, Annie discovers the quilt may mean more than originally expected_
A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
I really enjoyed the visit once again to Samuel and Annie. Weaving the story around a quilt actually worked very well, interspersed with different scripture lessons. Though I liked the prequel to this story, I adored this book even more. Once again learning a few of the Amish words and customs, I turned the pages quite quickly while being immersed in this truly delightful Christmas story. There are several books included in the Quilts of Love series which work just fine as stand-alone-reads.
4 (out of 5) pennies
*I received a complimentary copy of The Christmas Quilt from Abingdon Press for my honest review*
Annie and Samuel Yoder often work together ministering to the health needs of their Amish community and delivering babies. Soon they will have their own newborn, but first their sister-in-law Leah will deliver twins. The two women are close friends, and their lives and pregnancies are quilted together with love and faith. Annie, a registered nurse, proves invaluable to Leah and Adam, as they deal with conflict in their relationship and the impending birth.
This touching novel gives one the sense of being involved in this close-knit Amish family as well as appreciation for the life lessons learned. It's a true-to-life story of love and devotion and commitment, appropriate for any time of year. Although the title mentions Christmas, the holiday plays quite a small part in the story.
This stand-alone novel is part of the Quilts of Love series, where each book focuses on the story behind a particular quilt. And The Christmas Quilt also contains snippets of other short stories to accompany the biblical theme of Annie's quilted baby gift. I highly recommend this book by Vannetta Chapman.
Annie's life is deliciously full as the Christmas season approaches. She helps her husband, Samuel, attend to the community's minor medical needs. She occasionally assists Belinda, the local midwife, and most days, she finds herself delivering the buggy to her brother Adam. Annie's sister-in-law Leah is due to deliver their first child before Christmas morning, and Annie is determined to finish a crib quilt before the boppli arrives. With six weeks to go, she should have no problem . . . but God may have a different plan. Leah is rushed to the English hospital when the infant arrives early, and Annie discovers the Christmas quilt may hold a far greater significance than she ever imagined.
I know it's probably wrong to find enjoyment from Adam and Leah's marital problems, but it made the story so much more interesting. It wasn't the typical Amish story, and I enjoyed the well-written description of the quilt that was in the making by Annie. The nine squares represent the nine gifts of the spirit, and I thought it was beautifully detailed.
Between all the drama of one couple's relationship issues, the dramatic baby story, and the way nothing seems to go right; the author clearly states that God is a vital part of these stories. This novel is all about learning to love, even though I wouldn't say it is a romance.
This book was provided by the publisher through Litfuse Nest for free in exchange for an honest review.
I had no idea when I agreed to review several books for Abingdon Press that I would receive such a blessing from them. These two novels by Vanetta Chapman have been more joyful to read than many others_ well, maybe I shouldn't go too far, since I have several favorite authors and I love reading their books, too. But I will say that these two novels will be read and re-read many, many times!
The Christmas Quilt is a sequel to A Simple Amish Christmas where the story of Samuel and Annie first began, and this novel picks it up at the perfect time_ in A Simple Amish Christmas, Samuel proposes to Annie at the end_ and The Christmas Quilt begins with their wedding_
It was fun to read about Annie and Samuel again_ I so enjoyed reading about how their attraction to each other took them both by surprise! In this sequel, after delivering many others, Annie is finally expecting her own baby. But her new sister-in-law Leah is also expecting. I laughed and cried with them as they struggled through the joys and sorrows of life. I can't wait to read them both again!
The Christmas Quilt is part of the Quilts of Love series and is definitely one of the books on my "keeper" shelf.
I received this book free in exchange for an honest review from Abingdon Press, but my daughter had already bought a copy, so she has decided to bless a friend with her copy.
If you get the chance, buy both of the books and read A Simple Amish Christmas first, then jump right into The Christmas Quilt! I am certain you will enjoy every minute!