I loved Vannetta Chapman's Amish mystery series set in Shipshewana, so was eager to give this book a try. Set in the Quilts of Love series, the sewing of a quilt plays a large role throughout the book. I quickly realized the characters have starred in other books, yet I could fully enjoy this one without needing to know everything about their other stories. Instead, this became a sweet story of two women who are awaiting the births of their first children and the challenges that confront them. It is a story of friendship, of devotion, and of faith.
Annie is living a full and happy life as Christmas nears. Trained as a nurse, she helps her husband tend to the community's minor medical needs. She sometimes helps the midwife as well. Most days she takes the buggy to her brother's home as her sister-in-law, Leah, was due to deliver their first child just before Christmas. Annie is busy making a crib quilt for the expected newborn.
But Annie may not get the quilt finished in time as Leah experiences some trouble with her pregnancy and must go to a Philadelphia hospital.
This story is very character oriented. Leah and her husband have been having a bit of a rough time and we see how the birth draws them together. We also get to know Annie better as she prepares for her own motherhood.
This is a fine Amish Christmas story. It was interesting to read about what happens in the community when there is a medical emergency that is beyond the ability of the herbalist or midwife. It was heartening to see how the community came alongside the couple to help with the medical expenses. The whole story is wrapped around the making of quilts so readers who like Amish tales or the making of quilts will like this novel.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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'm not a big fan of Amish novels, but that mindset is quickly changing as I have read books like The Christmas Quilt! When I originally saw this novel I wanted to read it because I LOVE the cover! I thought it was adorable and just had to find a way to discover this story!
The Christmas Quilt was nothing short of a beautiful love story between two married couples and the joy of having children as well as the support of true family! I absolutely loved the overall story of the making of the quilt concerning the fruits of the Spirit! I'm currently teaching a group of girls at church about the fruits of the Spirit and reading about these fruits as the quilt was being made took on a whole new concept for me! There is something always to be joyful or thankful for in every situation as Leah and Adam learn!
Beside the awesome quilt making with godly lessons, I really enjoyed this Amish story as a whole! I felt it was different and unique in the birthing process that Leah experiences as an Amish woman. Plus I sometimes perceive that in stories about the Amish and their ways of life that they are so perfect and peaceful, making it hard for me to relate too. However in this story that is not true and I appreciated that. It really brought the Amish culture to life for me since some of the main characters had struggles like I do which helped me to understand and relate to them.
Annie might have not completed the quilt for Leah in the timing she expected, but as the reader journeys with her in the completion of it, perfect love blossoms at it's fullest and a new, kindled relationship with the Lord grows for each character!
I give this novel 4.5 out of 5 stars!
*I received this book for free from Litfuse and Abingdon Press in exchange for a honest review! All thoughts are my own and I was not required to write a positive review!*
Oh my word, as my grandmother used to say. While I wouldn't personally categorized this as a romance novel, it is certainly full of learning to love. And even though I've never made a quilt, I could envision each step as the stories were shared. Sometimes we can only live life one day at a time, and The Christmas Quilt by Vannetta Chapman reminds us to enjoy each day as it comes.
***I received this book from the publisher/author for the purpose of review. The above is my honest opinion.***