Source: Received to review due to my participation with Pump Up Your Book Tours
Genre: Religious (Amish) Romance
Book Description: (from Pump Up Your Books Tour Page) SUMMER OF SECRETS introduces Miriam Lantz, Amish owner of the Sweet Seasons bakery café, along with her twin daughters Rachel and Rhoda—but wait! When a tattooed, spiky-haired Goth girl turns out to be their long-lost sister, Plain lives get changed in a hurry.
Miriam explains the way Rebecca—now known as Tiffany—got washed away in the flood of 1993 and why the bishop at that time insisted Miriam and her husband keep it quiet. Now a widow, Miriam is realizing her dream—her mission—of feeding people, yet the current bishop, Hiram Knepp, insists she sell her bakery…and marry him. As more secrets surface the Lantz triplets and their mother stand united as a family “fer gut and forever” as Rachel plans her wedding.
My thoughts: I enjoy books of faith where the characters are able to maintain their faith in the face of trials. The Amish people are intriguing and amazing in my point of view. I enjoyed that this book takes a look at their way of life and explains some of their traditions and everyday life.
The book has some feisty and lovable characters. While the situation behind the book seems odd, it does flow and becomes believable. Miriam Lantz lost one of her daughters down the river in a flood. She assumes the worst and believes her daughter is dead. They do not seek help with law enforcement, because their religious leader said not to. Then there is the family that found her not looking for her biological family. The unconditional faith they have in their leader is hard to comprehend on some levels. But learning of their culture does help.
While it seems a strange background, I can understand the grieving mother and the joy she discovers in finding her lost daughter. The other two girls have varying degrees of acceptance and rejection. Then of course, the temptation of Rachel's beau with her newly discovered sister. I have heard stories of how the Amish are a forgiving people. I think this book illustrates that thought.
I have basically talked about the daughters. Miriam is faced with some decisions of her own that are life altering.
Anyway, lots of plot twists and learning to understand others. I enjoyed this book.
link and enter. It closes on March 7, 2012. Ten copies are available.
About Charlotte Hubbard: Drawing upon her experiences in Jamesport, the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi, longtime Missourian Charlotte Hubbard writes of simpler times and a faith-based lifestyle in her new Seasons of the Heart series. Like her heroine, Miriam Lantz, Charlotte considers it her personal mission to feed people—to share hearth and home. Faith and family, farming and food preservation are hallmarks of her lifestyle, and the foundation of her earlier Angels of Mercy series. She’s a deacon, a dedicated church musician and choir member, and when she’s not writing, she loves to try new recipes, crochet, and sew. Charlotte now lives in Minnesota with her husband and their border collie.