Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Seasons of an Amish Garden by Amy Clipston

Happy Book Release Day!  I love waking up with new books on my Kindle (I am definitely a book geek).  Seven Deadly Zins by Nancy J. Parra, A Literal Mess by J.C. Kenney, With This Pledge by Tamera Alexander, Bones Behind the Wheel by E.J. Copperman, The Lost Traveller by Sheila Connolly and Seasons of an Amish Garden by Amy Clipston are some of the new books that released today.
Spring Is in the Air: A Seasons of an Amish Garden Story by [Clipston, Amy]
Seasons of an Amish Garden takes us through the four seasons of a special vegetable garden in Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania.  Spring is in the Air has our young people planning the garden in honor of Emma Bontrager’s deceased husband with the proceeds going to the Bird-in-the Hand Shelter.  Katie Ann Blank is feeling like a third wheel since her brother, Ephraim started dating her best friend, Mandy.  Christian Lantz is new to town and is smitten with Katie Ann.  Working on the garden gives him an opportunity to spend time with Katie Ann and maybe it will help Katie Ann understand her brother’s relationship. 
Home by Summer: A Seasons of an Amish Garden Story by [Clipston, Amy]
Home by Summer forwards us to August when the garden is bursting with fresh produce.  Clara Hertzler is surprised to see Jerry Petersheim drop off his sister, Biena.  Jerry decided not to become baptized with the rest of the group.  He took a job with his uncle and began dressing English.  Jerry was protective of Clara when they were children and she misses spending time with him.  As Jerry helps with the garden, Clara tries to find out why Jerry left the Amish faith.  Jerry lost his connection with God, but with Clara help, hopefully he can find his way back home.  Can love and faith bloom along with the vegetables this summer?
The Fruits of Fall: A Seasons of an Amish Garden Story by [Clipston, Amy]
Tena Speicher comes to live with Emma Bontrager in Bird-in-Hand in The Fruits of Fall.  Tena is suffering from a broken heart after her fiancé left her for an English woman.  She is working at the vegetable stand when a homeless veteran comes up looking for food.  Tena is nervous around him, but Wayne King offers the man a home cooked dinner plus a place to sleep.  Alex McCormack, the veteran, has had a hard time since leaving the armed services.  Emma and the group offer him room and board in exchange for help around the farm.  Tena is uncomfortable around Alex and other Englishers.  Wayne helps Tena to see that all people are Gods children and deserving of benevolence.  Can Tena learn to trust Englishers and open her heart to the possibility of a new love?
Winter Blessings: A Seasons of an Amish Garden Story by [Clipston, Amy]
Mandy and Ephraim have gotten engaged and their wedding is eight weeks away in Winter Blessings.  Mandy is overwhelmed with the preparations, but she is eager to marry Ephraim and start their new life together.  But when Ephraim’s sister and her husband need a helping hand, it leads to disagreements and misunderstandings between the engaged couple.  The pair have doubts and wonder if they are truly meant to be together.  Their friends work to bring them back together during this special time of year.
The Christmas Cat: An Amish Christmas Love Novella by [Clipston, Amy]
Seasons of an Amish Garden by Amy Clipston contains four heartwarming Amish novellas.  The stories feature the characters from The Christmas Cat.  Each story takes place during a different season with the same group of people in each story.  The four stories are Spring is in the Air, Home by Summer, The Fruits of Fall and Winter Blessings.  Emma Bontrager and Hank, Emma’s Christmas cat, are featured in each of the stories.  Emma provides needed insight while Hank provides comfort.  After spending Christmas with Emma and Hank last year (The Christmas Cat), a group of young people have decided to start a vegetable garden on Emma’s property in honor of her deceased husband, Henry.  They will sell the vegetables at a stand with the proceeds going to Bird-in-Hand Shelter for homeless.  I found the novellas to be well-written and the stories move along at a nice, steady clip.  I like that each tale features relatable characters with realistic problems.  While each novella can be purchased individually, I suggest reading the whole book in order.  Each story builds upon the previous one.  While I suggest reading The Christmas Cat (such a charming  and humorous tale), it is not necessary.  The author summarized what occurred in that novella.  The Christian element is woven into each story providing messages that we all need to learn.  The stories do play out in an expected manner, they are still enjoyable to read.  I found the book to be a pleasant diversion (I devoured the whole book in under three hours). Seasons of an Amish Garden contains four sweet romantic stories with good life lessons and welcoming characters.

Amy Clipston will be hosting a party tonight on Facebook for the release of Seasons of an Amish Garden.  It begins at 8 p.m. EST at Facebook.com/Amyclipstonbooks. Thank you for joining me today, and I hope you have found a new book to read.  I will be featuring Wine and Punishment by Sarah Fox tomorrow.  It is the first novel in A Literary Pub Mystery series.  I hope you have a harmonious day.  Take care of yourself and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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