Happy September! The Christmas Prayer by Wanda Brunstetter and A Tale of Two Hearts by Michelle Griep are out today. Hitting the Books by Jenn McKinlay comes out on September 11 along with In Cold Chocolate by Dorothy St. James. There are numerous new books coming out this month. I am hoping for one that will knock my socks off.
The Mending by Susan Lantz Simpson takes us to St. Mary’s County, Maryland. Malinda Stauffer is finally heading home after helping her Aunt Mary recover and then suffering a relapse of her Crohn’s disease that ended up with her hospitalized. Her physician, Dr. Todd McWilliams flirted with her, but Malinda did not encourage him, and she hopes the doctor took the hint that she is not interested in him in a romantic way. Malinda’s best friend, Phoebe Yoder is engaged to Ben Miller and will soon be getting married. Isaac was interested in courting Malinda before she departed, and she hopes he has not changed his mind. However, one glimpse of Isaac with Becky, Malinda knows it is too late. Malinda yearns for a normal life like the other young women in her district, but she feels her illness will keep men at bay. There is one man, though, that Malinda cannot keep away from her. Dr. McWilliams is persistent, and the added stress is causing her Crohn’s disease to flare up. Plus, someone is not happy with Dr. McWilliams interest in Malinda and they are sending her threatening notes.
Timothy Brenneman works at the local furniture shop with Malinda’s brother, Sam. Timothy noticed the lovely young woman Malinda has become, but he thought it was too late when he saw her with Isaac. Now that Isaac is courting Becky, Timothy wastes no time in letting Malinda know that he wishes to court her. The problem is convincing Malinda that he loves her and that her disease is not a burden. Follow Timothy and Malinda on their journey in The Mending.
The Mending is the second book in this series and follow The Promise (Phoebe’s story). The Mending can be read as a standalone, but I found it helpful to have read The Promise first. I thought The Mending contained good writing, but the pace was slow in some areas. I sympathized with Malinda who must deal with Crohn’s disease. However, I quickly tired of the lengthy pity party. I kept hoping someone would give her a good, long lecture (a reality check). I enjoyed the descriptions of St. Mary’s County and the daily life of the Amish. I cannot imagine living without a regular washing machine and dryer (or without air conditioning). I felt the situation with Dr. McWilliams was serious, but it felt overly dramatic. I never understood why Malinda would not talk with her parents or someone in authority (I know it is part of the story, but it did not feel realistic). For someone who wishes to marry and have children, Malinda failed to act like an adult. The resolution came about abruptly, and it seemed too easy. I thought the romance between Timothy and Malinda progressed at a realistic pace. However, the back and forth with Malinda saying she would be a burden and Timothy saying he loved her (and wants to marry her) and her condition was not a burden became tiresome. Malinda needed to learn that she is not defined by her illness. I felt that Malinda needed to grow as a person as her relationship with Timothy developed. A few tweaks would have made a difference in the story. Some of the Christian themes present are trusting in the Lord, the power of prayer, have faith in God, and that His grace is sufficient. My rating for The Mending is 3 out of 5 stars. For those readers who enjoy a sweet Amish romance, then come along to St. Mary’s County, Maryland in The Mending. There is a preview of The Reconciliation at the end of the book which will be Atlee’s story (out on February 26, 2019).
Thank you so much for stopping by today. I will be sharing my thoughts onChristmas Angels by Nadine Dorries tomorrow. I hope you have a lovely weekend. Make sure you take time to relax (maybe enjoy a beverage in a comfy chair with a good book). Take care and Happy Reading!
The Avid Reader