Pinecraft, Florida, the vacation community for many Amish and Mennonites, offers a unique setting for an Amish novel. Betsy Yoder longs to start her own bakery, but shes young and needs financial backing from her family. Will they approve such an undertaking? Thad Zook, who had left his Amish roots a decade ago, escapes to Pinecraft for refuge. His skill as a pastry chef intertwines his life with Betsys, and the unlikely pair seem drawn together. How could such a relationship work? She loves the security of her faith, and he wonders if he can ever find faith. The captivating story includes suspense and threats, along with a realistic example of how a community interacts and supports its members. Warning: The book may cause weight gain because all the talk of delicious desserts makes one want to go eat some.
We often grow up with preconceived notions about what is expected of us. For example, if we're from a family of teachers, we might think we are expected to become a teacher. Sometimes the expectation is expressed, other times it is just assumed. I'm no expert, but I suppose this holds true across cultures as well; certain occupations are "approved", others are not.
Sowell has written an intriguing story set against that kind of conflict and how it is manifested in the lives of two young adults. This book isn't a typical "Amish" story, so if you are looking for that, you may not appreciate this book. But if you are interested in how modern life might invade classic Amish culture, this is a good choice.
When one thinks of Amish fiction, the usual setting is in Pennsylvania, Indiana or Ohio, CERTAINLY not in the sunny state of Florida. Lynette's first book in this series, "Seasons of Pinecraft", entitled "A Season of Change" totally captivated me and I must admit, this second one did the same! I absolutely loved the location! Knowing that Pinecraft is a real place where many Amish and Mennonites vacation, as well as some who are permanent residents, made the story very real to me. The setting is one that I easily picture in my mind.
The main character, Betsy Yoder, has been totally devastated. She is heartbroken after being left by a man who also left the Order to marry someone else. Betsy finds solace in her talent of baking, owning a successful bakery in the village of Pinecraft. She offers the most delicious desserts from her Amish heritage. She has been successful in finding contentment in her hard working life and so is totally shocked when some feelings appear involving the new baker, Thaddeus Zook, a former Amish man. He is NOT one to whom she should be attracted. He has a wild streak and a great liking for leather and motorcycles!!
Thaddeus has NO desire to rejoin the Amish community. He is only in Pinecraft , due to a personal need of refuge from an adversary attempting to track him down. He tries desperately to fight the growing attraction that he feels for Betsy, as he realizes that she has an intense devotion to her faith and family, while he cherishes his freedom.
Can Thaddeus and Betsy meet on a commmon ground?? Does God have a plan to combine their lives ?? How will God satisfy the needs and desires of this young couple??
Lynette has a special talent in describing her characters in a realistic way. They become so important to the reader that one wishes to be able to give advice, pray with them, and at times, just give them a big hug. You feel their confusion, challenges, heartaches and joys.
The plot moves quickly and successfully involves both mystery and romance, while keeping us in the Amish genre. Just as I would think I had figured out some answers, a new twist or turn would appear in the next chapter. This book holds one's attention from beginning to end!! In fact, I had great difficulty putting it down to deal with daily life!! It is truly a sit on the edge of your seat type of book.
I am looking forward to the next in the series!!
This book is a five star!! I LOVE it , Lynette. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to review it.
This book was provided by the author and the publisher, in exchange for a fair and honest review.
A Path Made Plain, Seasons in Pinecraft Series by Lynette Sowell
Amish, Mennonite, Christian Fiction
I really enjoyed this 5 star book. I found it to be refreshing, heartwarming and a great example of what it takes to live the life of faith. The author Lynette Sowell did an outstanding job of bringing life and excitement to the characters. It was well written with many examples of what life is like when you dedicate yourself to live a life filled with higher moral and faith filled standards.
Betsy Yoder is recovering from a broken heart. She pores her heart into her new bakery. Working hard to bring desserts from her Amish heritage to the village of Pinecraft and prove to her family that she can succeed. Former Amish pastry chef Thaddeus Zook is hiding from his past. He has lived as a Englisher and as Amish, his heart loves both worlds. He turns to his grandmother for a safe refuge until he came get his life in order. There he meets Betsy Yoder and sparks fly. They fight their attraction until his past catches up with him and Betsy is kidnapped to get at him. He must now decide what is most important the Amish life, the English and how does Betsy fit in. I loved this book. It can be read as a stand alone but is book 2 of the Seasons in Pinecraft Series. I have read book 1, A Season of Change and loved it also.
I want to thank the author Lynette Sowell and publisher Abingdon Press for bringing good clean Christian books like this one to readers like me. I was provided with this book in exchange for my honest review.
The second book in the Seasons in Pinecraft series, A Path Made Plain, is so much more than am Amish Romance story. You will find this book woven full of mystery, suspense, characters finding their place both in and out of the Amish community, and behaviors not typically found within the Amish fiction genre. Yet, at the same time, the spiritual threads clearly weave themselves throughout the story and its characters.
I enjoyed the multi-genre appeal of this book. It could be read as a stand-alone novel; however, the background found within Book 1 (A Season of Change) will certainly enhance your reading pleasure. I am enjoying the surprising twists found in Ms. Sowells, Seasons in Pinecraft series. The setting of the Pinecraft community in Sarasota, FL lends itself well to characters and events not commonly seen in Amish stories.
A copy of this book was provided to me by the author in exchange for my honest review.