Saturday, August 8, 2009

Book Review: The Hope of Refuge by Cindy Woodsmall/5 Stars

About the book:

Raised in foster care and now the widowed mother of a little girl, Cara Moore struggles against poverty, fear, and a relentless stalker. When a trail of memories leads Cara and Lori out of
New York City toward an Amish community, she follows every lead, eager for answers and a fresh start. She discovers that long-held secrets about her family history ripple beneath the surface of Dry Lake , Pennsylvania , and it’s no place for an outsider. But one Amish man, Ephraim Mast, dares to fulfill the command he believes that he received from God–“Be me to her”– despite how it threatens his way of life.

Completely opposite of the hard, untrusting Cara, Ephraim’s sister Deborah also finds her dreams crumbling when the man she has pledged to build a life with begins withdrawing from Deborah and his community, including his mother, Ada Stoltzfus. Can the run-down house that Ada envisions transforming unite them toward a common purpose–or push Mahlon away forever? While Ephraim is trying to do what he believes is right, will he be shunned and lose everything–including the guarded single mother who simply longs for a better life?

My thoughts:

Cindy Woodsmall has done it again! She's got a knack for writing a good Amish story that is different from anything else available on Christian bookstore shelves. Just like all of her other books, she has written a great story in The Hope of Refuge that will stay with me for days.

This book has probably one of the most believable storylines for Amish fiction that I've read in a long time. Cindy has created convincing characters with real flaws and real reactions to the circumstances that surround them. She also has great skill in being able to draw you into the lives of these characters, and it's like you are right there with them through the good and the bad.

What Ephraim did for Cara by taking her into his home took a lot of guts considering his commitment to the Amish lifestyle. He had to face some harsh treatment from his family and friends for obeying God's command for him to "be Me to her." I felt that the author hit the nail on the head by adding that small statement to this book, and it made me wonder how much we apply that to our daily lives.

Trust me, you will not be sorry if you get the opportunity to read this great book. As I said before, it's a book that will stay with you and have you thinking for days. I am already looking forward to the next one that Cindy has coming out...thankfully, I only have a couple of months to wait!

5 Stars

Southern?  No
Sass?  No

Some other info for ya...
New York Times bestselling author Cindy Woodsmall is on tour, and she may be coming to a city near you! Don’t miss your opportunity to meet Cindy and have her sign her newest title The Hope of Refuge at one of the following events.
Tuesday, August 11 7 – 8:30pm
Barnes & Noble
5141 Peachtree Parkway, The Forum
Norcross , Georgia 30092
(770) 209-4244
Wednesday, August 12 7 – 8pm
Barnes & Noble Opry Mills
515 Opry Mills Drive
Nashville, Tennessee 37214

(615) 514-5000
Thursday, August 13 6 – 8pm
Barnes & Noble
2540 Futura Pkwy. #135
Plainfield , Indiana 46168
(317) 838-7941
Friday, August 14 6 – 8pm
Barnes & Noble
1550 West 75th
Downers Grove , Illinois 60516

(630) 663-0181
Saturday, August 15 1 – 3pm
Baker Books
2768 East Paris Ave SE
Grand Rapids , Michigan 49546-6139

(616) 957-3110
Sunday, August 16 2 – 4pm
Barnes & Noble Booksellers
3700 Rivertown Parkway Ste. 2058
Grandville, Michigan 49418

(616) 531-1825
Monday, August 17 7 – 8:00pm
Barnes & Noble Booksellers
1739 Olentangy River Road
Columbus, Ohio 43212

(614) 298-9516
Tuesday, August 18 7– 8:30pm
Joseph Beth Booksellers
2705 E. Carson Street
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15203

(412) 381-3600
Wednesday, August 19 6 – 8pm
Hackman’s Bible Book Store
1341 Mickley Road
Whitehall, Pennsylvania 18052-4610

(610) 264-8600
Thursday, August 20 1 – 3pm
Rachel’s Country Store (Amish dry goods store)
6352 McClays Mill Road
Newburg, Pennsylvania 17240
(717) 530-9452
Can’t make the tour? You can still follow Cindy’s adventures on Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter. See you there!
One more thing....

Cindy was recently covered on ABC Nightline. If you'd like to see the video from that interview, go here.

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