What better way to get in the Holiday Spirit than to read a good, Amish story centered around the Christmas Season. Annie and Leah are very busy and patiently await their new little ones to make their sweet apparence into their family. While Leah and her husband Adam have always been very close, they are now drifting farther and farther apart. It was when Leah started having serious problems with the pregnancy and had to stay in a hospital in Philadelphia that each of them realized how bad they had treated each other. Thankfully Annie was able to stay with Leah the weeks she had to stay in this Englisch hospital.
The Christmas Quilt is part of The Quilt's of Love Series from Abingdon, and as with each story in this series, this one has a special meaningful quilt. For this quilt in this story, Annie and Leah works on the quilt while they are away from home awaiting the birth of Leah's baby. As they added new pieces to the quilt, they talked about the fruits of the spirit, in comparison with the Christmas spirit. This helped these two ladies as they had to spend their time away from their families and especially their husbands. I loved this Amish story. Vannetta Chapman has away with Amish stories that make you come back for more. I would suggest reading Ms. Chapman's book, A Simple Amish Christmas first because A Christmas Quilt is a Sequel. I just know you will enjoy them both, just as I have.
Let these two wonderful Amish stories centered around the Christmas Season be the books you choose to read this Holiday Season.
I received this book from the publisher Abingdon Press to read and review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 55.
Annie Yoder did something different during her rumspringa, she went into the English world and became a nurse. Upon her return she married herbalist, Samuel Yoder, who took care of the local Amish's basic medical needs. As the story opens they are expecting their first child and her brother, Adam and his wife Leah are expecting for the first time too. Leah is carrying twins. The two women are very close. Annie wants to make Leah a special quilt for the babies. Thinking she has time to spare, (Leah isn't due for two months), Annie gets a late start.
Leah unexpectedly goes into early labor, endangering her life and the babies. She is must be taken to a hospital in Philadelphia where she and the babies can be cared for. Annie agrees to stay with her until the babies are born.
Adam and Leah have been having struggles in their marriage since Leah became pregnant. Neither knows what the problem is and the distance grows between them. The sudden separation they experience while Leah is in the hospital causes both of them to view their marriage through different eyes.
Annie and Leah work on the quilt together and to pass the time share stories that illustrate the nine fruits of the spirit from Galatians chapter 5, one for each quilt square.
The community pulls together to have an auction to help pay for Leah and the babies hospital stay. Adam is overwhelmed by their love and generosity.
While this book would be a great read anytime, it is especially so for the Christmas season. Not because the story takes place around the holiday, but because of the many lessons associated with Christmas that can be learned from it.
Adam and Leah's marital problems stemmed from losing focus on what was important. Adam was worried about finances and being a new father. Leah focused on her pregnancy discomfort and began to be selfish and ill tempered. When faced with the possibility of losing one another their priorities became very clear. I was reminded of how we lose focus of Christ, during the Christmas season. He is the true reason to celebrate, yet people caught up in buying gifts, decorating, preparing special food; everything except the Child that was the greatest gift of all. He should always be our priority and focus.
Annie made a great sacrifice to stay with her sister in law. She spent many days away from her husband whom she missed and loved. She sat long hours caring for Leah and keeping her company. The Amish community made sacrifices of time and possessions to help earn money for the young couple's medical bills. This time of year the greatest sacrifice ever made began with the birth of Jesus. God sent His only Son to begin life on earth only to give it up for us.
I enjoyed the examples the women shared to illustrate Galatians 22 -23. It gave me the idea to do the same thing. I plan to find nine examples of each "fruit" from people and situations from my own life. This would be a great thing to do in a group as a Bible study too!
There are more examples I found, those were just a few. How many can you find?
A wonderful heartwarming book! This is the first of Ms. Chapman's I have read and I look forward to reading more!
I received this book free from Abingdon Press. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
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.