I enjoyed Tricia's first Amish series (Big Sky series) and I was happy to see some of those characters make an appearance in The Memory Jar, since part of the book is set in West Kootenai, and part in Ohio. Sarah isn't a typical Amish woman, with her love of cupcake baking, but her best friend Patty had a big part in showing Sarah it is okay to be different. Jathan isn't a typical Amish man, either, only he took more guff over his differences. The healing that took place as Sarah and Jathan began to get to know each other and carry each others burdens, so to speak, was heartwarming. The story took some unexpected twists and turns, and I found the end a bit improbable, but this was a good start to a new series. I'm looking forward to reading on as more bachelors find their brides in Montana.
With thanks to Zondervan Publishers, via NetGalley, for my review copy.
Sarah Shelter works as a baker at the West Kootenai Kraft and Grocery and watches the young Amish bachelors who come each year to live a few months in Montana for the chance to gain resident status and hunt wild game. Many of the bachelors also leave West Kootenai with brides.
For years, Sarah has saved little items in her memory jar, something that is even more special to her since the death of her best friend Patty a few years earlier. Sarah's painful memories threaten to hold her back from finding love and from pursuing her dreams of someday running her own bakery.
Then she meets Jathan Schrock. Will this young bachelor from Holmes County, Ohio, help her use the memories from her jar to move out of her past and into the future she has long dreamed of?
Tricia Goyer has written a heartwarming story in The Memory Jar, with characters experiencing a variety of life's joys and hurts. Following Sarah and Jathan through the ups and downs of their relationship is a touching journey filled with both disappointment and fulfillment. This is a great read for fans of Amish fiction -- or anyone who enjoys a well-written story of hope and love.
Thanks to Tricia Goyer for providing me a copy of The Memory Jar. I am happy to give this book a five-star recommendation.
First of all, I found the concept of a "memory jar" as kept by Sarah in "The Memory Jar" rather quaint even for an Amish story. To think that teens and adults would collect rocks, tiny pinecones, etc. and store them in a jar to aid as a tool to recollect their special moments or experiences in life is not in keeping with any society beyond that one really backward or very young. In spite of my concept and thinking on a "memory jar" that is an item of particular importance in The Memory Jar by Tricia Goyer.
When a young girl our heroine and her young friend both keep their memories intact inside th memory jar. This becomes especially important to Sarah after her best friend Patty dies in a boating accident. Memories are all Sarah has left of Patty and therefore the jar becomes important.
Sarah can not seem to get into the boy meets girl and girl and boy marry scenario that is expected of the Amish. She is not much for routine housekeeping responsibility and dotes on her skills as a "fancy" baker. She dreams of one day having her own bakery.
Jathan arrives on the scene along with other young Amish bachelors who come to the area hunting - both for wild game and for brides. Jathan is somewhat shy but he has spotted Sarah. They are in a group that goes hiking and become well acquainted because she has an injury and he helps her.
As the story progresses, they have family and community issues that put roadblocks in their path. It looks like things might work out for them and then it all falls apart. Will their relationship end up in the memory jar? Will it be a good memory, or will it be a memory of heartbreak?
DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy of the book on behalf of the publisher and author in exchange for my honest review.
This is the story of Sarah Shetler and her healing and finding a new life. As a little girl her family moved from Kentucky to Montana, where she is befriended by Patty. Patty and Sarah share so much of their youth together and create so many memories.
When we begin this book there has been a tragic accident and Sarah's Dear friend Patty has been killed. For Sarah, Patty was that perfect "almost Sister" type friend. They shared so many memories...as we travel through the book we are given glimpses into there happy moments. They each had a memory jar...little tokens of a special memory. How awesome...we all carry these precious thoughts, but to touch something that brings us back to those moments. Wonderful!
I feel Sarah's pain and how hard it must have been for her to find peace and feel those happy times now that her friend is gone. Along come Jathan, he has come to search his heart, and spend time in the cozy little town of West Kootenai, Montana. Every year bachelors come to go hunting in the mountains.
When they find an attraction to one another, Sarah lets down her guard and starts sharing Patty with him. He also lets her know his Mam owns a Bakery! Sarah's passion is making incredible cupcakes....I want her recipes! YUM!
When Jathan is called back home after is Daed had had a stroke will it be the end for them?
This is a story of finding oneself, and peace at our decisions, and following what is God's plan.
This is the first book in this series, and am anxious to read more of this heart warming stories!
I received this book through Litfuse Book Tours, and was not required to give a positive review.
This moment is the most important one of all. We can either enjoy it, and the people we are with; or we can wish for something from the past back, or want to rush into the future. But then we miss the gifts that are here...in this moment.
Sarah Shelter misses her best friend, Patty, who two years before drowned in a boating accident. Sarah learned a lot about life from Patty, and she is the one who helped to start Sarah's interest in making memory jars. Sarah keeps little trinkets that she has collected to help her remember special times. These memories, especially the ones she made with Patty, Sarah holds outside of herself; in her jars.
As a way to deal with her grief, Sarah turned to her baking, and works at the West Kootenai Kraft and Grocery as one of their bakers. She finds solace in baking things, especially cupcakes, that make people smile. Sarah also has a dream, a dream that Patty had encouraged, which is to own her own bakery one day. But her Mem wants her to focus on finding a husband and becoming a good Amish wife.
Jathan Schrock (one of the bachelors who is visiting West Kootenai, Montana on a hunting trip) has his own issues from the past that he needs to deal with. He also would like to have his own business, and a wife and kids someday, but he knows that it is his duty as the youngest son to support his aging parents.
The Memory Jar by Tricia Goyer is a sweet story that contains both a love for God's creation, as well as a message of how God can heal broken hearts when we let him. Jathan and Sarah are both well-developed characters; who had endured themselves to my heart. Tricia has done a wonderful job of depicting the Amish way of life in the first book of her new series Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors; which captivated me from the first page to the last. A very enjoyable story. I now look forward to the next book, The Promise Box
**The Memory Jar by Tricia Goyer was provided for me free by Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for my honest review.