I started this book the moment I finished "The Shunning" and could not put it down. Beverly Lewis is such a fabulous story-teller; she had me turning page after page. This book is a journey depicting the struggle Katie goes through to discover her "true" identity - something we can all struggle with from time to time. A wonderful plot ... I stayed up waaay past my bedtime to finish it in hopes of the story concluding - of course, it didn't. So on to book three I went :)
I read the first book in this series, "The Shunning", over a year ago and as a result of this had forgotten a lot of the details. I've also read several other Amish-themed books between then and now and have established my views on who the best authors are in this genre and which series is my favourite. Unfortunately, this book isn't among them. As much as I enjoyed the first book and all of its drama and angst, this one just seemed unnecessarily over-dramatic and cliched. Although I wanted to read about Katie meeting her birth-mother and being reunited with her lost love, I didn't feel so connected to her and there were several passages devoted to the points of view of the servants in her birth-mother's house - many of whom were, bizarrely, English. Was it typical to have English servants in an NY home in 1997? Particularly ones who appeared to have stepped out of an Agatha Christie novel? I did enjoy reading about the "imposter" and wondering whether Katie would ever get to meet Lydia face-to-face (although considering the predictability of this novel, it was rather obvious that this would eventually happen) but I felt that this series lost its charm once it was no longer based in Hickory Hollow. I tend to prefer the Amish novels that focus on people who embrace their beliefs, rather than those who escape the lifestyle. I will read the last book in the trilogy as I checked it out of the library last week, but I definitely prefer Lewis's "Abram's Daughters" series to this one. But to give the author credit, this trilogy was her first and it's obvious that her writing has grown immensely since this was published.