Saturday, September 7, 2013

For Every Season by Cindy Woodsmall

Okay, well, this book was a shocker for me! Not in a good sense, however.

I have read other books by Cindy Woodsmall and have enjoyed and recommended them, so I was pleased to have the opportunity to read and review this book, For Every Season. It's an Amish fiction, and I usually find such books to be interesting, clean fiction reads.

I knew, going into this, that this book is number 3 in a series~~and I was pleasantly surprised to find a foreword of sorts which began "The story so far. . ." and gave a brief overview of the happenings in books 1 and 2 of the series. I felt like this overview prepared me nicely to begin this book without wondering about what was going on.

The story focuses on several Amish young adults who have moved from Pennsylvania to Maine to begin a new Amish settlement and to recover from the financial difficulties brought upon their families by a tornado's destroying their apple orchard business back home in PA. Many families hopes are tied up in the success of the Maine orchard. Along side of this, there are several interpersonal issues going on -- Rhoda, who is engaged to Jacob -- who also has a very huge mysterious back story -- and Samuel, his brother, who is in love with Rhoda also -- and Leah, who is considering leaving the Amish society for a non-Amish boyfriend, and then there's Rhoda's friends/people she stays with -- and their unfolding dramas -- and, and, and!

To my point of view, there are just TOO many main characters and too many conflicts for the reader to really be able to focus on one or the other. Yes, real life is full of lots of side stories, but the author does not treat these as side stories, but all as competing main stories. What was the main story of this book?

But all that aside, I still would have said that I liked the book -- BUT for the aspect of one of the main character's (Rhoda's) magical mystical visions of the future and past, her "gift". I was really uncomfortable with this in a book which is supposedly a Christian book. These supernatural visions. . .not for me.

For this reason, mainly, I would not really recommend this book. I am not planning on reading any of the other books in this series either. I have liked this author's books in the past and might again in the future, but not this magical supernatural, other-than-God stuff.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review. I was not required to write a positive review.

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