Monday, February 14, 2011

The Search by Suzanne Woods Fisher

From the Publisher:
Fifteen years ago, Lainey O'Toole made a split-second decision. She couldn't have known that her choice would impact so many. Now in her mid-twenties, she is poised to go to culinary school when her car breaks down in Stoney Ridge, the very Amish town in which her long-reaching decision was made, forcing her to face the shadowed past.  
Bess Reihl is less than thrilled to be spending the summer at Rose Hill Farm with her large and intimidating grandmother, Bertha. It quickly becomes clear that she is there to work the farm--and work hard. The labor is made slightly more tolerable by the time it affords Bess to spend with the handsome hired hand, Billy Lapp. But he only has eyes for a flirty and curvaceous older girl.
Lainey's and Bess's worlds are about to collide and the secrets that come to light will shock them both.
Beautifully written, The Search is a skillfully woven story that takes readers through unexpected twists and turns on the long country road toward truth. Fans both old and new will find themselves immersed in this heartwarming--and surprising--tale of young love, forgiveness, and coming to grips with the past.

My Take
This has to be one of Suzanne Woods Fisher's best novels. Usually you get the typical Amish story--boy meets girl, boy/girl begin a relationship, challenges develop, boy/girl overcome & marry. However, in The Search there are a couple interesting sub-plots; sub-plots that I haven't seen before in Amish literature.
I found it compelling to read how decisions made a long time ago affect the lives of so many people. When only a couple people know the truth behind a secret, can they change the future? Can they push their loved ones toward a certain destiny? Or do they let life play out on its own and see what happens?
The main characters of Bess and Lainey aren't your typical Amish literature characters. They both have a mind of their own and aren't nearly as submissive as the typical Amish woman. I like that they aren't as passive as most characters and that they stand up for what they want. Is that typical in the Amish community? From what I've read, no it's not. But as a non-Amish individual, I like their personalities.
The Seach touched me with its subtle faith excerpts and discssions. There was nothing "preachy" about it at all in my opinion. The main story was entertaining and a nice, easy read. As always, I enjoyed Fisher's writing and The Search certainly kept my attention. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to curl up with a good story and interesting plot.

Available January 2011 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, offers practical books that bring the Christian faith to everyday life.  They publish resources from a variety of well-known brands and authors, including their partnership with MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) and Hungry Planet.

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