This was an enjoyable read. It was a bit different from other Amish fiction I've read. It focused more on the Old Order Amish, but the main characters were the "Englischers." It had an interesting mystery subplot that came together nicely at the end. I loved the plot of the famous person hiding from the media, and the father-son issues that occurred throughout the story. This was well done and realistic. And of course, there was the token buggy accident. Sometimes I wonder if it's a required plot element for Amish fiction. I do think I learned a bit more about Amish beliefs from this book than from other Amish novels I'd read in the past.
I wasn't too fond of the minor subplot regarding the aunt with Down Syndrome I also found the epilogue at the end to be pretty sophisticated for someone with Anna's mental capabilities. I didn't feel like it matched her capacity to understand and reason as demonstrated by her behavior earlier in the book. Since I've worked with people who have this diagnosis for many years it's hard for me to see something like Anna's characterization and not comment. At her age (late 50s) Anna would not be acting so immaturely. In fact, most people with Down Syndrome have Alzheimer's type symptoms as they age, so they wouldn't giggle and play games, but would be more likely to act forgetful and a bit crabby, because someone who is forty with Down Syndrome will feel like they are about 80. I believe Anna's age was 57. So her character didn't fit the profile of any of the people I've become familiar with in the last ten years. Of course, there are always exceptions. This was a minor issue, but it did bug me a bit.
Overall the story was good. I read the book very quickly and enjoyed the romantic element. It was a sweet romance, but not so sweet that there was no heart to the story. I appreciated that there wasn't a lot of angst and drama in the relationship between the hero and heroine, and that the hero admired the heroine's strength and found it attractive. That was portrayed with a different twist. I loved the underlying theme about pride (as demonstrated at the baseball game) and how much it can often interfere with our good intentions. I also thought the message about the restoration of relationships and forgiveness was nicely done. The way the Amish bounced back after their tragedy was admirable as well.
I just finished reading this book and I had a very hard time putting it down. Ms. Miller paints such vivid pictures of her characters and their surroundings that I truly felt immersed in their lives. The wrapping up of the story through Anna's eyes at the end was a precious choice to make and I thought every detail she honed in on concluded the book in a heartwarming way. One of my favorites in quite some time!