I think I liked this book better than the first. I did think some of it was entirely too similar though so I couldn't quite give it a 5 star rating. Don't mistake my honesty as expressing a dislike as I really did enjoy the story despite a few shortcomings I thought that book had. For one, I thought that the love triangle angle was a smidgen annoying since I felt it pretty much happened in the first story. In Inescapable, I could understand Lizzie's plightâ€”Hope just came off a little flighty. Overall though, I did enjoy the story and I look forward to book three if there is to be one.
About the Story:
Hope is torn between two menâ€”betrothed to Ebbie but seriously interested in Jonathan. As hate crimes start to mount against the Mennonite, Ebbie and Jonathan are at odds at how to handle the situation. The Mennonite are gentle people who do not believe in any sort of violence but change is in the air and the church is at odds on where things stand.
Really, the above paragraph sums everything upâ€”there's not much else I can say to expand on. I felt that this story was a better read than the first but after having read book one I do feel as if the two books were too similar in parts. I would have liked to have seen a little deviation from the typical love triangle.
Since there was in fact a love triangleâ€”at least it wrapped up nicely and I had no idea who she would choose. I was nearly tempted to skip forward a page just to find out once it became apparent that she had made up her mind so at least it was written to be intriguing. Overall a solid four star read and I'll be picking up more from this author.
I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
This was an interesting book. I was able to finish it in 2 days. I don't know much about Mennonites, but realize they aren't like the Amish. Anyways, this book was jam packed with action. It wasn't that it was such an easy read that I finished it so quickly, but that I couldn't put it down. Each chapter seemed to end with something that made me want to read the beginning of the next chapter...then I just kept reading.
Gentle and unassuming Hope Kauffman has never been one to question or try to make changes. She quietly helps her father run Kingdom Quilts and has agreed to the betrothal her father arranged for her with the devout but shy Ebbie Miller.
Despite Hope's and other Kingdom residents' attempts to maintain the status quo, changes have already begun to stir in the small Mennonite town. The handsome and charismatic Jonathon Wiese is the leader of the move to reform, and when one of Kingdom's own is threatened by a mysterious outsider, Jonathon is one of the first to push for the town to arm itself. Hope's fiancee, Ebbie, is at the forefront of those demanding the town stay true to its traditions of nonviolence.
Faith was a huge factor throughout this book. I can honestly say I didn't agree with the beliefs that were being presented in the book, however, I can accept the fact that if this is how Mennonites really believe, then who am I to cause them to change their minds. The most important factor is belief in Jesus Christ. As Christians, our belief system should be evolving into what God would have us believe, and we shouldn't be swayed by others no matter how charismatic or passionate they are.
Forgiveness was another thread in the book. The community made it a point to make sure to forgive others, no matter the circumstance. What a difference that can make when someone chooses to forgive, not only for them, but for the person they are choosing to forgive. That's the power of God being shown through His children!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers for review.
Hope Kauffman has grown up in Kingdom which is a tiny Mennonite community in Kansas which even some who live in nearby towns don't know how to get to. This community is in the midst of change within their very own town. Some want to be more liberal and some want the conservative status quo. Hope has never wanted to move outside of her community but now she is looking into her own beliefs and trying to decide on what exactly she believes and wants from her life. She is a fully grown adult at 26 years old but has always lived with her widowed father. She is engaged to her best friend Ebbie but Jonathon has been lately looking so good to her. Hope is so confused about who to choose. If that weren't enough there has been someone in a red pickup trying to run over horse and buggies. A real Mennonite mystery right here in Kingdom. Hope had been injured and had to jump out of her buggy and landed in a ditch one day. If Jonathon had not been there she didn't know what would have happened. These hateful people were not only trying to run horses and buggies off the road and had actually killed poor old Avery one day but were also setting fires to churches and Mennonite homes with Molotov cocktails. The elders of the church had finally said that people could no longer travel by their selves but must be together for protection. Jonathon and some of his friends were guarding the community, some even with guns. Which also was brought into question since the Mennonites did not believe in using violence against evil.
I liked this book. It made this religious group seem more real to me. Ms Mehl has brought out all that needs to be though about as these people make their way in this world living the life that they believe the Bible teaches them to do. Though the Mennonite community lives together and supports each other each person must make the individual decision on what God is telling each of them to do. Each one of them must decide how much to do for themselves and what to depend on God to provide. Not a lot different than what everyone must do. We are not that much different are we?
This book was provided for this review by Bethany House.
One road leads to the quiet Mennonite community of Kingdom where a peace-loving community resides, and the residents feel protected from the outside world. Communities surrounding Kingdom are being victimized by hate crimes against Christians. Churches have been set aflame and cars forced off the road. On a return trip to Kingdom from a nearby town, Hope Kauffman and her horse and buggy are forced off the road by a pickup truck. Jonathon Wiese, a recent member of the community, rescues Hope just as the truck is heading toward her a second time.
Confusion at her racing heart and the acute awareness of Jonathon's presence cause Hope to question her reaction to Jonathon's attention. Hope is betrothed to her long-time friend Ebbie Miller, a conservative Mennonite like Hope, her father, and the majority of their community. Her conservative ways and lifelong convictions are shaken by the openness of Jonathon's attraction to her, and her response to his actions. Her faith in God keeps her internal struggles at bay even while she grapples with her conservative roots and a more progressive perspective.
Additional incidents victimizing their small community have become alarming, and Jonathon and other residents take action to protect the town from further harm by keeping guard on the road leading into Kingdom. Conflicts develop between conservative, nonviolent members of the community and the small group who feel that more resistant action should be used to protect Kingdom from future harm.
Dual plots in this suspense-filled and romantic story are fast paced yet beautifully detailed. The realities of resistance and nonresistance are well defined and choosing sides in this story is not an option. Both sides of both plots are humanistic and relative. The spiritual quality throughout this story is strong and well utilized. Nancy Mehl has a beautifully descriptive and picturesque nature with words, enhancing the locale and human qualities of her characters. This is a wonderful sequel to "Inescapable," but the book is also a stand-alone. This book has its own merits.
DISCLAIMER: I received a PDF copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are mine, and no compensation has been received for this review.
In Unbreakable, the heart pounding sequel to Inescapable, we are again swept away to the lovely, little Mennonite town of Kingdom; with its quaint shops, cafes, and the smell of honeysuckle permeating the fresh air...a special place, safe and protected from the outside world. That is until an unexpected threat of evil arrives in town, leaving the peaceful residents wondering if life in Kingdom will ever be the same again.
Hope Kauffman is proud of her Mennonite heritage and contented with her life in Kingdom where she runs a quaint quilt shop. Engaged to the shy, unassuming Ebbie Miller, Hope is stirred and confused by emotions brought on by the handsome, blue eyed, Jonathon Wiese.
Jonathon is a young Mennonite newcomer to Kingdom and when someone purposely tries to run Hope's buggy off the road, it is he who saves her life and the chemistry between them begins to grow. As new incidents and attacks occur on Kingdom's residents, and Ebbie, seeing the attraction between the two breaks off their engagement, Hope's world is turned upside down. Soon she begins to question everything she has been brought up to believe in.
Who is attacking the townsfolk with a vengeance...and why? And should the residents of Kingdom give up their pacifist ways to defend themselves or simply trust God to protect them through it all? Jonathon and Ebbie are both handsome, godly men willing to do anything to protect Hope -- but which one holds the key to her heart?
Nancy Mehl has written a heart pounding, realistic, romantic, suspense story that will keep the reader turning those pages till the exciting, climactic conclusion! I admired the central characters who were not afraid to show their human frailties and need for forgiveness. I especially loved the fact that I had no clue which man Hope was going to choose until the last few pages of the book. I fell in love with both of these wonderful heroes! As always, I enjoyed the cozy, small town atmosphere and camaraderie of the townsfolk in Nancy Mehl's books. Although this is Book Two in The Road To Kingdom series, it can easily be read as a stand alone, but I highly recommend both of these books to all!
I received a copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for my honest opinion.