The Heirloom by Beverly Lewis is a special story that is a prequel to The Shunning. I thought the story was well-written and it had a good flow. The characters were developed and relatable. Katie Lapp is in the story, but The Heirloom focuses on Clara Bender and Ella Mae Zook. I liked both characters. Clara and Ella Mae may be decades apart in age, but they got along so well. The pair have a special relationship. I like how a family quilt that needed to be repaired played into the story. Ella Mae and Clara are quilters (another thing they have in common) and can repair quilts that need some love. I enjoyed the description of this family quilt. We get to see how the rules can differ from one Amish church district to the next. The differences can include the style of dress, the type of caps, gizmos allowed in courting buggies, scooters versus bicycles, and so on. Unfortunately, sometimes a bishop can be too strict which causes people to move. I can understand why Clara’s father is worried about Clara finding a beau and possibly settling down in such a strict district.
I could understand Clara’s grief over the loss of her mother. She is having a hard time seeing someone come in and take her mother’s place in the house. It is hard losing a parent and you will continue to miss them every day. Ella Mae is dealing with the loss of her husband and her children are pushing her into doing something she is not ready to do. Ella Mae is a special woman who offered wise words, encouragement, and support. One of my favorite phrases from The Heirloom is, “God cares ’bout even the little things, she always said. Big or little, if they matter to you, dearie, they matter to Him.” The Heirloom has a sweet ending, but there is a detail or two that I wish had been different. This is a special Amish tale that deals with family, friendship, forgiveness, hope, grief, love, and faith. The Heirloom is a touching Amish tale with distressed daughter, loving letters, a family friend, a bouncing buggy, youth group gatherings, a bothered bishop, and a devoted God.
The Avid Reader