Monday, February 10, 2014

REVIEW: The Calling by Suzanne Woods Fisher

Title: The Calling
Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher
Series: Inn At Eagle Hill #2
Publisher: Revell
Publish Date: Jan 14, 2014
ISBN: 9780800720940
Buy It Link: Amazon
Genre: Amish romance
Rating: 4 Stars

Synopsis: Twenty-year-old Bethany Schrock is restless. Her love life has derailed, her faith hangs by a thread, and she is spending the incredibly hot summer days wading through a lifetime’s accumulation of junk at the home of five ancient Amish sisters. About the only thing that holds her interest is the spirited and dangerously handsome Jimmy Fisher–and he seems bent on irritating her to no end.
When the sly old sisters and a guest at the Inn get Bethany involved in running the local soup kitchen and starting a community garden, she suddenly finds herself wondering, Shootfire! How did that happen? Despite her newfound purposefulness, a gnawing emptiness about a childhood mystery continues to plague her. Encouraged by Jimmy Fisher, she will seek out the answers she craves–and uncover a shocking secret that will break her heart, heal it, and point her to love.
Bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher delivers her trademark twists, turns, and tender romance in this delightful and exciting visit to the deceptively quiet community of Stoney Ridge.
Review: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This was the first Amish book that I ever read. I did have some preconceptions about the Amish before reading it, but honestly, I wasn't sure what to expect. A bunch of German? A lot of heavy handed religion? 
Whatever my preconceptions about the Amish, I didn't find any of them in this book. Instead, I found a very sweet, gentle romance, with some religious overtones throughout the few different story threads going through the book. There really wasn't as much of the Amish culture in the book as I thought there might be. Without the buggies and rare Germanic phrases tossed in, it could be any other religious romantic fiction story just tossed back a century and a half. 
The storyline itself flowed well, I found myself pulled more into the youth pastor's story, than into Bethany and Jimmy's romance. I found myself caring for all of the characters, even the shady Rusty. I think I'm going to have to go back and read the first in the series before I turn my sights to the next. Ultimately, I'm glad I finally opened myself up to this genre. It was a very calming book to read during a very tumultuous and stressful time in my life.

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