We begin this story at the wedding of Abby's sister Zanna to Jonny Ropp. Attending the wedding is a young widow and her daughter Rosemary Yutzy and toddler Katie. Also attending is the fellow who thought Zanna was going to be his wife...James Garber.
We find that the paths we have chosen for our lives are not always the ones God has for us. Things change, sometimes it is hard for us to understand.
When James was interested in Zanna, he couldn't see Abby, even though he had known her most of his life. Abby is such a sweetie, and you hope that she will end up with James.
As soon as Matt see Rosemary, he is smitten. You seen young Katie steal his heart. Can Rosemary let go of her deceased husband, and accept a new life? She has such a good heart and is taking care of her father-in-law Titus, and his thirteen year old daughter, Beth Ann.
As we travel along on this journey we encounter a number of Amish ways of life...weddings, funerals, baby showers, quilting bees, helping with packing families who are moving away and also those moving among them. We see the panic in some families that their husbands will be chosen to become a preacher for life.
I so enjoyed this story and wanted to move in with them, become a member of the family. Even when some not so nice things are said, you find the person apologizing. Don't miss this wonderful insight into Amish life and romance.
I received this book through Pump Your Book Virtual Tours, and the author, and was not required to give a positive review.
"Some of us have dealt with disappointment this past week, and it seems to me that instead of making lemonade from such lemons, maybe a pan of lemon bars - or a lemon meringue pie! - would be a better way of chasing off our negative moods. We have to take the sour with the sweet, and when you bake up a pie or a batch of lemon bars, you spread happiness along with your treats. I wish you someone wonderful to share them with this week. ~ Abigail Lambright"
Abigail or Abby as her friends call her is the epitome of sunshine and hope when you meet her. She will always find the silver lining in the most desperate of situations and those who can call her a friend, know that they have found a true treasure with her friendship. Abby is finally beginning to look for love among her closest childhood friend, James Graber, who has miraculously survived a bad relationship with her sister Zanna. Zanna has found love among another and left a jilted and lovesick James behind for another. Now it seems that everyone but James and Abby can see that they are truly meant to be with one another and can look past their friends relationship and find something more meaningful inside.
The last thing that Rosemary Yutzy wanted to do was to attend a wedding in Cedar Creek, Missouri. It would just be another constant reminder that she was still a widow living with her daughter Katie and fighting back the memories of the life she had hoped would be her future with her husband Joe. But when a hunting accident robbed her from a life she dreamed of, she resolved to spend all her time and energy raising Katie and taking care of Joe's dad, Titus and his daughter Beth Ann. But then again love has a way of popping up just when you least expect it and in the most unusual of places.
Matt Lambright couldn't help himself from staring at the young Amish girl dressed all in black. He thought she was just about the most beautiful girl he had ever seen and it became a mission of his to find a way into her heart and make her fall in love with him. When opportunity presents itself with her father-in-law, Titus to merge a growing lamb-raising business that would benefit them both immensely, he tries to curb his over enthusiastic approach to getting to know her. All he manages to do is scare her off. After all she is still grieving the loss of one love and can understand why she might be as skittish as one of his lambs about jumping in too soon. Will they find a way to make it all work out?
I received, Rosemary Opens Her Heart by Naomi King, which is the second book in the Home at Cedar Creek Series, compliments of Pump Up Your Book Tours for my honest review. I read the first book in the series, Abby Finds Her Calling, and couldn't wait to see what would happen to poor James at the conclusion of that novel. It was completely worth the wait!!! Naomi King also writes under the name, Charlotte Hubbard so for those of you that love Charlotte's books, you'll want to grab this series as well and fall in love with the wholesome and heartwarming characters of this wonderful close-knit community of Amish people. You can't help but find a character you can completely relate to in this series, whether its an issue of learning to trust again after facing great pain like Rosemary or James, or even the ever optimistic Abby who finds at times, that a smile isn't always easy to find when you need it the most, but she gives it her best effort. I would easily rate this book a perfect 5 out of 5 stars. You can read this as a stand alone but you will want to go back and read Abby Finds Her Calling to see how it all began!!!
This book starts out where book one left off, which is at Zanna Lambright and Jonny Ropp's marriage ceremony and celebration with family and friends. This newlyweds act as matchmakers pairing up young Amish men and women in hopes of the possibility of the couples will be a good match that would end up in courting leading to marriage.
Two such couples stand out from the rest. Abby Lambright and James Graber were both surprised to be paired up for dinner by the bride and groom. Then Matt Lambright and Emma Graber were paired up which surprised Matt and was wishful thinking for Emma. Especially since Matt had not taken his eyes off Rosemary Yutzy the beautiful young widow that was leading around her three year old daughter. Matt was sure this was love at first sight. The only problem was that Rosemary was still in love with her deceased husband. No matter how hard she tried to discourage Matt refused to back away. He had even found he had a tenderness in his heart for her child.
The Good Shepherd was mentioned many time in this book. One man in particular appeared to walk the walk of a good shepherd.
The story is mainly focused on these two couples and their pursuit to happiness and their faith in God to lead them at this important time in their lives. There are many obstacle to overcome, family members to think of and their goals as far as their business and livelihoods. For instance, Abbey has her sewing business and working in the mercantile with her brother Sam. James has his Carriage/Buggy building business that keeps him very busy. Not to mention his parents that need a lot of care. Then Matt has sheep that need constant care. Then Rosemary bakes and sells pies to local stores and bakeries. She also has a house to run for her father-in-law and to care for her young sister-in-law.
The author put this story and these couples together like a quilt with so many intricate pieces to even count. When she got the pieces all laid out and put together, it was a beautiful story to behold. She created her characters to have faith in God along with the wisdom to trust God with their prayers. Part of that wisdom was to follow the advice of their church leaders when challenges arose. The author had to have had a lot of wisdom and faith in God herself to have written such an endearing story.
I highly recommend this book.
I received a free copy of this book from Penguin Group/Pump Up Your Book Publicity Tours for review. I was in no way compensated for this review. It is my own opinion.