In Plain View is the second book in the Valley of Choice series. It had been quite a while since I read the first book, but that didnt cause me any problems in picking up where Accidentally Amish left off. However, I would highly recommend that you read the series in order from the beginning, as the books are closely tied togethermore like one long story with the main characters.
There are actually two parallel stories in this series, though the contemporary one is the main storyline. The other story, which is interspersed with Annie and Rufus story, centers on family ancestors during the Revolutionary War. The historic story line is actually very interesting and brings out the dilemma of the peaceful Amish during the time their countrymen were divided as to their allegiance.
In this book, we have the opportunity to become better acquainted with Rufus, who has been single a good deal longer than his contemporaries, and we also get to know members of Annies family. Annie seems much more settled into her new life choice, although there are significant lapses.
I like this second book even more than the first. I recommend this series to anyone who has ever thought she might enjoy the Amish life.
I absolutely loved the first book in this series, Accidently Amish. I have not finished In Plain View yet, however I am almost hoping for a happy ending but that Annie goes back to her English life, which at this time I do not know. The story just seems a bit unrealalistic that someone would make the choice she seems to be making. I would like to see someone, in a story line, go from English to trying to become Amish, and then cannot make the grade and reverts back to their English life. Just seems like that story line would be more as real life would be. I did enjoy and am enjoying the first and this second book and I have not started the third one in that series . I would reccomment the books however. I try to place myself in Annies position and what I would do.
In the second book of the series, Annaliese Freisen is continuing her exploration of the Amish lifestyle by basically "living plain." It's natural that she would face temptations to use technology, and feel pride, and she does. It's natural that her parents would have trouble coming to terms with the choices their daughter is making, and they do. It's natural that Rufus, the ever patient Amish man-of-her-dreams, wants her to make her own decision and not just do it for him, so, much to the reader's frustration at times, he hangs back.
I didn't think this book was as good as the first , but it is a genuine sequel, not just set in the same town, but about different people, like many series are, so that excuses it for being a little slow. Interspersed with the modern story are chapters concerning descendants of the original Amish pioneers. I found these a little hard to follow, with so many names in two distinct branches of the family.
None-the-less, I did enjoy the continuing story of Annie and Rufus, and look forward to reading the concluding episode.
Olivia Newport melds the past and the future...linking the lives of the ancestors to the hope of the future generations. It does not happen without considerable pain and heartache. Amish shun their people if they leave after baptism so the forgiveness and reconciliation do not always take a simple course. The process seems harsh to those of us who look on from the outside world, and even to many among the Amish themselves.
Add war to the mix and the Amish believe in nonviolent resistance. What do you do with the Amish who choose to fight for the freedom of America from the British? What do family members say when their own family members seem to betray their values and beliefs? Can they reconcile? Can the depression and pain from wartime activities ever allow Nathaniel and Magdalena to find the love they long for?
I enjoyed this book immensely but I did get confused at times as the author switched back and forth between time periods and characters. I read the prequel to this book and that helped me somewhat but it took me reading through half of the book to truly feel I had a clear handle on who was who and where the story line was taking place at the time. This is a story full of hope, even though it is laced with heartache and sorrow....just like real life.
I received a free pdf copy of this book from netgalley in exchange for my honest review.