“Always in My Heart” by Mary Ellis
Hope Bowman believes God is punishing her for giving up her firstborn son when she was a teenager. She’s hidden this past from her husband, who is thankful for their daughters but longs for a son. Hope prays desperately, but the son God sends isn’t a new pregnancy. It's the fifteen-year-old boy she gave away years ago.
“Always His Providence” by Ruth Reid
Widow Rosa Hostetler has one month to pay her delinquent taxes before the county auctions her farm. She’s prepared to sell whatever is necessary to pay the lien, but she isn’t willing to request money from the community's widow fund. She’s embarrassed and refuses to admit she needs help. Rosa depends on income from selling eggs, but when that income is threatened, only a miracle can help Rosa accept the kindness of a neighbor.
“Always Beautiful” by Beth Wiseman
Becky Byler is eighteen and obese. As she continues to grow, so does her despair. Having lost all hope, she considers taking her life, even though it goes against her beliefs. Standing before rushing water, unable to swim, Becky begs God for a miracle. Two months pass and Becky has miraculously lost over a hundred pounds. But does Becky like the person she has become? Could it be this weight loss isn’t at all the miracle she thinks it is?
|Contributor(s)||Beth Wiseman (Coauthor), Ruth Reid (Coauthor), Mary Ellis (Coauthor)|
|About the Contributor(s)||Beth Wiseman (Coauthor)
Award-winning, bestselling author Beth Wiseman is best known for her Amish novels, but her most recent novels, Need You Now and The House that Love Built, are contemporaries set in small Texas towns. Both have received glowing reviews. Beth's highly-anticipated novel The Promise is inspired by a true story. Website: www.bethwiseman.com Twitter: @bethwiseman Facebook: Fans-of-Beth-Wiseman
Ruth Reid (Coauthor)
Ruth Reid is a CBA and ECPA best-selling author of the Heaven on Earth series. She's a full-time pharmacist who resides in Florida with her husband and three children. Facebook: Author-Ruth-Reid Twitter: @authorruthreid
Mary Ellis (Coauthor)
Mary Ellis grew up close to the eastern Ohio Amish community, Geauga County. Before “retiring” to write full-time, Mary taught middle school and worked as a sales rep for Hershey Chocolate. Mary is a CBA and ECPA best-selling author as well as an ACFW Carol Award finalist and runner-up for the 2010 Holt Medallion Award.
|Release Date||Dec 3, 2013|
- Review by J.C.
In my case, the answer is “YES!” And I will be hunting up books I don’t already have from these authors!
In the first story: Always in my Heart, we get to see the major differences between Amish marriages and Englisch marriages. What does the typical Englisch husband do when he finds out his wife has been hiding something from him for their entire marriage? Read the story to see what the typical Amish husband does.
This is the first novel I’ve read by Mary Ellis and her writing is phenomenal. She does have an odd habit of using the Deutsch word for wife a lot instead of having her husband call her by name and this is the first book I’ve read where this was done but I don’t know everything about every Amish community so maybe this is common in some of them… Her writing is so wonderful, even with this small oddity, I could NOT put it down. GREAT Story! GREAT Writing! Read it!
The same is true of the second.
Ruth Reid’s writing – also fantastic! She draws you right into the story and you can feel the character’s emotions so clearly. It’s so hard to let go of the story, that when it’s over you almost want to cry.
This is the first book of hers I have read also and I can’t WAIT to go hunt down more of hers!
In the second book we see a different character’s story but in the same community. I LOVE when they do this! It’s so much better than having to wait for the next book in the series to come out.
I didn’t think the story of a lonely widow would appeal to me much but it really did. It was amazing. I found myself staying up far beyond my usual bedtime to read I haven’t done that in a while.
I never could have imagined that Amish girls would have to deal with weight issues. Who could have guessed? But that is indeed the main conflict of the third story in this anthology.
Beth Wiseman handles the story beautifully. I found myself feeling Becky’s pain as I read. And yet, I could feel myself feeling the pain of other characters as well and it was enlightening and heart-breaking as well. Great writing! WOW!
I found myself thinking about how this is a wonderful story to share with my daughter and even my son. Even at a young age, I feel it is important to share stories and lessons about life with our children – especially about dating and self-esteem issues.
This story also shows us that sometimes… even if God’s answer is yes, it’s not always the best thing for us.
All three of these stories are wonderfully written and beautifully flowing one into another and I can’t wait to go back and read “An Amish Gathering”, “An Amish Love”, “An Amish Wedding”, “An Amish Kitchen” and the upcoming “An Amish Garden”. I’ll probably wait to read “An Amish Christmas” until a little closer to Christmas time this year. (Posted on 3/4/14)
- Review by Melanie
The first novella is "Always in My Heart" by Mary Ellis and it tells the story of Hope Bowman and her struggles with her children.
The second novella is "Always His Provision" by Ruth Reid which tells the story of Hope's widowed friend Rosa who is struggling since the loss of her husband, both in her heart and financially.
The last novella is "Always Beautiful" by Beth Wiseman which tells the story of Becky, who babysits for Hope and is a friend to Rosa, but has her own struggles with her weight and her relationship with herself.
I enjoyed this format and think others may want to give it a try too. My only wish was that the book was longer! (Posted on 12/15/13)