Saturday, December 21, 2019

The More the Merrier by Linda Byler

The More the Merrier: An Amish Christmas Romance by [Byler, Linda]
Greetings!  Linda Byler grew up Amish and is an active member of the Amish church today.  Linda is a columnist for a weekly Amish newspaper.  She is the author of Lizzie Searches for Love Trilogy, The Christmas Visitor, A Dog for Christmas, The Dakota Series, and Lancaster Burning Trilogy.
Farms and Barns
The More the Merrier by Linda Byler takes us back to 1931 in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.  Annie Miller is raising eight children on her own after the death of her husband, Eli.  She is barely scraping by when a fire destroys the barn in which Annie almost perishes.  The Amish community rallies around to assist in the building a new barn and help while Annie is in the hospital.  Grief overwhelms Annie along with the enormity of keeping her family fed and clothed.  People expect Annie to move forward, but it is easier said than done.  Then she receives a letter from Dan Beiler who is a widower with six children who wishes to start a friendship.  Annie worries it is too soon after Eli’s death and worries about her children’s reactions along with her critical mother’s.  Annie decides to ignore the letter and think of an alternative plan.  But then another letter arrives.  What will Annie do?
Criticism is an alluring substitute for creation, because tearing things down, unlike building them up, really is as easy as falling off a stump. It's blissfully simple to strike a savvy, sophisticated pose by attacking someone else's creations, but the old adage is right: Any fool can burn down a barn. Building one is something else again.  ~ The Joy Diet
The More the Merrier by Linda Byler is a sweet story.  Annie Miller is left a widow with eight children to raise during the depression.  Her eldest child has been hired out and his wages to help.  But Annie needs to find a way to provide.  Then her barn burns down and she almost dies. Annie is rescued by Dan Beiler who is a widower with six children of his own.  Dan continues to think about Annie and decides to write her a letter to see if she would be interested in a friendship.  The More the Merrier is a story about second chances, forgiveness and love.  Linda takes us back to 1931 when everyone (except the 1%) is struggling to survive.  We see Annie struggle each day to put food on the table for the kids.  Annie must learn to make the decisions now that her husband, Eli is gone.  Her life hits an all time low when the barn catches fire.  Things always seem to get worse before they get better.  Annie prays for guidance to make the right choices for herself and her children.  Dan also worries about disrupting his kids’ lives and prays to God.  They both want to follow His lead.  I liked how they both had such a strong faith.  We see that God answers our prayers in His own way and in His timing.  I thought the story was realistic with engaging characters.  I enjoyed The More the Merrier and look forward to reading more stories by Linda Byler.  The More the Merrier is a heartwarming and inspiring story.  
Interesting insights on the Amish – History 101
The More the Merrier is a good story to read during the holidays.  You can pick up your copy here* (Amazon UK).  Thank you for stopping by today and reading my review.  I know that it is a busy time of year.  Tomorrow I am sharing my thoughts on Death of a Russian Doll by Barbara Early.  It is the third A Vintage Toy Shop Mystery.  I hope that you enjoy your day.  Take care and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader
A Quiet Read Painting
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