The Elusive Miss Ellison by Carolyn Miller

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

The Elusive Miss Ellison by Carolyn Miller was a rich historical fiction book.  This is the first book I have ever read by this author, and I was surprised by how much I liked this book. On the back of the book they compare this author’s writing to Julie Klassen, and if I had to pick between this author and Julie, I would choose this author.  I was interested in this book right from the first page right up until the end of the book.  I liked both Livvie and Nicholas from the outset because they seemed like they were people who were alive at one point.  I love when I find that characters in historical books seem like they were alive at some time because it means I was able to feel like I was part of the book and that doesn’t often happen when I am reading historical romance.  If you are looking for a great book to read I would one hundred percent recommend this book.  I also think that this book would be a great book for some who is looking to start reading historical fiction.

About The Book

Handsome appearance counts for naught unless matched by good character and actions.

That’s the firm opinion of not-so-meek minister’s daughter Lavinia Ellison. So even though all the other villagers of St. Hampton Heath are swooning over the newly returned seventh Earl of Hawkesbury, she is not impressed. If a man won’t take his responsibilities seriously and help those who are supposed to be able to depend on him, he deserves no respect from her. In Lavinia’s pretty, gray eyes, Nicholas Stamford is just as arrogant and reckless as his brother-who stole the most important person in Livvie’s world.

Nicholas is weighed down by his own guilt and responsibility, by the pain his careless brother caused, and by the legacy of war, he’s just left. This quick visit home to St. Hampton Heath will be just long enough to ease a small part of that burden. Asking him to bother with the lives of the villagers when there’s already a bailiff on the job is simply too much to expect.
That is, until the hoydenish, intelligent, and very opinionated Miss Ellison challenges him to see past his pain and pride. With her angelic voice in his head, he may even be beginning to care. But his isn’t the only heart that needs to change.

These two lonely hearts may each have something the other needs. But with society’s opposition, ancestral obligations, and a shocking family secret, there may be too many obstacles in their way.

Fans of Georgette Heyer, Lori Wick, and Julie Klassen will enjoy the spirited exchanges between the bluestocking minister’s daughter and the bruised war hero as they move past pride and presumption to a humbled appreciation of God’s grace and the true strength of love.

About The Author

Carolyn Miller lives in New South Wales, Australia, with her husband and four children. A longtime lover of Regency romance, Carolyn’s novels have won a number of RWA and ACFW contests. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Australasian Christian Writers.

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Door To Freedom by Jana Kelley

FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Door To Freedom by Jana Kelley was a great book.  This is the second book in the series and going into this book I was sure I was going to like it because I loved the first book in this series.  This is such a unique plot that I can’t help but love it because it is so different from anything else that I have ever read.  I love that with these books you get to peek inside of what it would be like to be a Christian living in Sudan.  I also enjoyed this book because it is based on true stories and I am always a sucker for books that are based on real stories.  This book made me want to share my beliefs more because if people are sharing their faith in places like Sudan, I should do the same thing here.  If you are looking for a book that is different from most of the books out there, I would recommend this entire series to you because I know you will love them like I do.

About The Book

In the dusty, Islamic country of Sudan, Mia, who is raising her family in a Muslim country, has learned to boldly share her faith. Rania, the daughter of a wealthy Sudanese Arab, seeks to find the reason for her sister’s sudden disappearance. Mia holds some of the answers, but both women quickly discover they must each walk through their own doors to freedom—the freedom that only comes when you trust God’s sovereignty more than man-made security.

Part of New Hope® Publishers’ line of contemporary missional fiction, Door to Freedom, the sequel to Side by Side, opens the reader’s eyes to modern-day persecution and the life of Muslims in Sudan. Based on real-life events, Door to Freedom also reveals some of the struggles that Christians face when living under Islamic law. The reader will be inspired to pray for those who are persecuted for their faith as well as for the salvation of the persecutors.

About The Author

Jana Kelley is a Texan who hardly ever lives in Texas. Raised in Southeast Asia, Jana developed a love for cross-cultural living early in life. Her love for writing came soon after. Jana returned to Texas to attend college. She and her husband married a month after she graduated, and by their second anniversary, they were living in a remote African town. After 13 years living in Africa and the Middle East, Jana, her husband, and their three boys moved to Southeast Asia where they currently live. You can learn more about Jana at janakelley.com.

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Home To Paradise by Barbara Cameron

Home to Paradise Barbara Cameron

FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Home To Paradise by Barbara Cameron was a great Amish fiction novel.  As most of you know by now, I am a huge fan of Amish fiction books.  Every time I see one I have to get it and read it because I can’t get enough of them.  This is the third book in the “Coming Home” series.  This is the first book that I have read in this series and me able to figure out what was going on.  If had had the time I would have liked to read all three books in order, but I didn’t have the time, so I am hoping that I will be able to read the other two books later even though I know what happens to them because I read this book.  I really liked Rose and John right from the start, and I was sad when the book was over because I felt like I really connected with the characters.  If you love Amish fiction like I do I would tell you to pick up the first two books so that you can read them in order.

About The Book

Rose Anna Zook has watched her two older sisters marry two Stoltzfus men and has always thought she and John, the third Stoltzfus brother, would marry, make a home together, and have children. But John has other ideas. He’s enjoying his Rumschpringe in the Englisch world a little too much and isn’t interested in returning to the Amish community–especially to marry.
Rose Anna is determined to bring her man back into the Amish fold. John is equally determined to live his life free and unencumbered. Who will win this battle of wills? Will love prevail?

About The Author

CBD, CBA, and ECPA best-selling author of 24 books (including new series upcoming for Abingdon Press in 2011/2012) including fiction and non-fiction books for Abingdon Press, Thomas Nelson, Harlequin, and other publishers.

I sold three films to HBO/Cinemax and am the first winner of the Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Award.

My two novellas won the 2nd and 3rd place in the Inspirational Readers Choice Contest from the Faith, Love, and Hope chapter of RWA. Both were finalists for the novella category of the Carol Award of the American Christian Writers Award (ACFW).

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The Mark of the King by Jocelyn Green

 

FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

The Mark of the King by Jocelyn Green was an okay book.  At times I did find myself getting bored with this book and I also felt like from time to time I got lost because I had a hard time focusing on this book.  For some reason, I just could get into this book.  I am not usually a huge fan of historical fiction books, but I had a hard time stay engaged with this book.   This is the first book I have read this book and because I had such a hard time staying interested in this book I don’t think I will read her books in the future.  I think I am going to hang on to this book for a few years and see if when I try and read it again if I don’t enjoy it more next time.  If you enjoy historical fiction books, I would say to read an excerpt of this book before you buy it or see if your local library has a copy of it that way if you don’t enjoy it you would be out any money.

About The Book

Sweeping Historical Fiction Set at the Edge of the Continent
After being imprisoned and branded for the death of her client, twenty-five-year-old midwife Julianne Chevalier trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling 1720s French colony of Louisiana, where she hopes to be reunited with her brother, serving there as a soldier. To make the journey, though, women must be married, and Julianne is forced to wed a fellow convict.
When they arrive in New Orleans, there is no news of Benjamin, Julianne’s brother, and searching for answers proves dangerous. What is behind the mystery, and does military officer Marc-Paul Girard know more than he is letting on?
With her dreams of a new life shattered, Julianne must find her way in this dangerous, rugged land, despite never being able to escape the king’s mark on her shoulder that brands her a criminal beyond redemption.

About The Author

Jocelyn Green inspires faith and courage as the award-winning author of ten books to date, including Wedded to War, a Christy Award finalist in 2013; Widow of Gettysburg; Yankee in Atlanta; and The 5 Love Languages Military Edition, which she coauthored with bestselling author Dr. Gary Chapman. A former military wife herself, her passion for military families informs all of her writing as well as her numerous speaking opportunities. Jocelyn graduated from Taylor University with a BA in English and now lives with her husband and two children in Iowa.

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Of Stillness and Storm by Michele Phoenix

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Of Stillness and Storm by Michéle Phoenix was a good book.  I did find that it was kind predictable in the sense that I have read enough books in this genre that I pretty much knew what was going to happen but even with that being so I still really enjoyed this book and the authors writing.  The more books I read, I am okay with being able to see what is going to happen if I get wrapped up in the characters and if I am able to look at them like they are real people.  I had no problem connecting with these characters and falling in love with the book.   I loved that this book takes place in a different country and involves characters that aren’t commonly used.  Even though this book does follow a set pattern because it has enough things that are different about it I am sure that is why I loved it so much.  If you love Christian fiction novels than I am sure you will enjoy this book as well.  If you have read it what did you think of it?

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About The Book

Of Stillness and Storm (Thomas Nelson, December 2016)

“I felt torn between two worlds. Each with its own mystery. One more captivating than the other, but the other more real and breathing.”

It took Lauren and her husband ten years to achieve their dream—reaching primitive tribes in remote regions of Nepal. But while Sam treks into the Himalayas for weeks at a time, finding passion and purpose in his work among the needy, Lauren and Ryan stay behind, their daily reality more taxing than inspiring. For them, what started as a calling begins to feel like the family’s undoing.

At the peak of her isolation and disillusion, a friend from Lauren’s past enters her life again. But as her communication with Aidan intensifies, so does the tension of coping with the present while reengaging with the past. It’s thirteen-year-old Ryan who most keenly bears the brunt of her distraction.

Intimate and bold, Of Stillness and Storm weaves profound dilemmas into a tale of troubled love and honorable intentions gone awry.

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About The Author

Born in France to a Canadian father and an American mother, Michèle Phoenix is a consultant, writer and speaker with a heart for Third Culture Kids. She taught for 20 years at Black Forest Academy (Germany) before launching her own advocacy venture under Global Outreach Mission. Michèle travels globally to consult and teach on topics related to this unique people group. She loves good conversations, mischievous students, Marvel movies and paths to healing.

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Fraying At The Edge by Cindy Woodsmall

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Fraying at the Edge by Cindy Woodsmall was such a fun twist to Amish fiction.  I have a huge fan of Amish fiction, and this book was such a fun twist on those types of books.  I loved that we got a look as to what it might be like if people were to switch places and live another person’s life.  This is the second book in the series, and I know that I am going to go back and read the first book because I have to find out what went on in that book.  From the first page right until the end of the book I didn’t want to put it down.  I loved everything about this story and the characters I literally can’t say anything bad about this author or this book.  If you love Amish fiction and are looking for a book that is a little bit different than the other books out there then I would tell you to pick this one up and check it out.

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About The Book

“Family, community, faith, and love. These “quilt blocks” sewn together made Ariana’s beautiful life. When they are pulled to pieces, will anything familiar remain? The Old Order Amish life Ariana Brenneman loved vanished virtually overnight with the discovery that she was switched at birth twenty years ago. Now she’s immersed in the Englischer world, getting to know her mother, and under the authority of her biological father, an atheist intellectual with resolute plans to expand Ariana’s worldview. Only Quill Schlabach, a childhood friend living Englisch, can help steady Ariana’s tilting ground between the two worlds, but can she trust him after so many betrayals? At the same time, Skylar Nash is forced to choose rehab or spend several months with her true relatives, the large Brenneman family and their seemingly backward life–no electricity, no technology, no fun. What the young woman can’t leave behind is her addiction to illegal prescription drugs and deep emptiness from the belief that she doesn’t belong in either family. New ties are binding Ariana and Skylar to the lives they were meant to have. Can they pray for the wisdom and strength they’ll need to follow God’s threads into unexpected futures? Fraying at the Edge is the second novel in The Amish of Summer Grove series”–

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About The Author

Cindy Woodsmall is a New York Times and CBA best-selling author who has written nineteen (and counting!) works of fiction and one of nonfiction. She and her dearest Old Order Amish friend, Miriam Flaud, coauthored the nonfiction, Plain Wisdom: An Invitation into an Amish Home and the Hearts of Two Women. Cindy’s been featured on ABC Nightline and the front page of the Wall Street Journal, and has worked with National Geographic on a documentary concerning Amish life. In June of 2013, the Wall Street Journal listed Cindy as one of the top three Amish fiction writers.

She is also a veteran homeschool mom who no longer holds that position. As her children progressed in age, her desire to write grew stronger. After working through reservations whether this desire was something she should pursue, she began her writing journey. Her husband was her staunchest supporter as she aimed for what seemed impossible.

She’s won Fiction Book of the Year, Reviewer’s Choice Awards, Inspirational Reader’s Choice Contest, as well as one of Crossings’ Best Books of the Year. She’s been a finalist for the prestigious Christy, Rita, and Carol Awards, Christian Book of the Year, and Christian Retailers Choice Awards.

Her real-life connections with Amish Mennonite and Old Order Amish families enrich her novels with authenticity. Though she didn’t realize it at the time, seeds were sown years ago that began preparing Cindy to write these books. At the age of ten, while living in the dairy country of Maryland, she became best friends with Luann, a Plain Mennonite girl. Luann, like all the females in her family, wore the prayer Kapp and cape dresses. Her parents didn’t allow television or radios, and many other modern conveniences were frowned upon. During the numerous times Luann came to Cindy’s house to spend the night, her rules came with her and the two were careful to obey them—afraid that if they didn’t, the adults would end their friendship. Although the rules were much easier to keep when they spent the night at Luann’s because her family didn’t own any of the forbidden items, both sets of parents were uncomfortable with the relationship and a small infraction of any kind would have been enough reason for the parents to end the relationship. While navigating around the adults’ disapproval and the obstacles in each other’s lifestyle, the two girls bonded in true friendship that lasted into their teen years, until Cindy’s family moved to another region of the US.

As an adult, Cindy became friends with a wonderful Old Order Amish family who opened their home to her. Although the two women, Miriam and Cindy, live seven hundred miles apart geographically, and a century apart by customs, when they come together they never lack for commonality, laughter, and dreams of what only God can accomplish through His children. Over the years Cindy has continued to make wonderful friendships with those inside the Amish and Mennonite communities—from the most conservative ones to the most liberal.

Cindy and her husband reside near the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains in their now empty nest.

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Pursuing Gold by Cynthia L. Simmons

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Pursuing Gold by Cynthia L. Simmons was a super interesting historical fiction book.  This book takes place during the civil war which has always been a time period that I have had a hard time getting into the stories but this book was different for me and I am not sure why that is.  I really enjoyed the characters in this book even though at times I would forget who was who so I would be super confused for a page or so and then I would remember who was who and it all made sense again.  There are a lot of characters which is why I kept getting confused I am sure but once I was into the book a good way I was able to keep them straight.  I really did enjoy this authors writing and I am going to add her to list of authors to read more books by them in the future.  If you love historical fiction books I would for sure recommend this book to you especially if you love civil war fiction.

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About The Book

With his father dead and his business partner incapacitated, Peter Chandler inherits the leadership of a bank in economic crisis.

>With only a newly-minted college degree and little experience, Peter joins his partner’s daughter, Mary Beth Roper, in a struggle to keep C&R Bank afloat while the Civil War rages around Chattanooga. Political pressure for unsecured loans of gold to the government stirs up trouble as tempers and prices rise. Their problems multiply when Mary Beth discovers counterfeit money with Peter’s forged signature. Can they find the forger before the bank fails? The two friends must pursue gold on behalf of their business, as they learn to pursue their heavenly Father to find hope and peace.

cynthia-l-simmons

About The Author

Cynthia L Simmons and her husband, Ray, have five children and reside in Atlanta. She has taught for over thirty years as a homeschool mother and Bible teacher. She’s a columnist for Leading Hearts Magazine and she directs Atlanta Christian Writing Conference. Cyndi has a heart for encouraging women in today’s crazy, upside-down world. She loves history and peppers her speaking and teaching with fascinating vignettes from the past. Her first book, Struggles and Triumphs, was nominated for 2008 Georgia Author of the Year. She co-founded Homeschool Answers and hosts Heart of the Matter Radio.

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Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2016 Margaret Margaret

The Remnant by Monte Wolverton

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

The Remnant by Monte Wolverton was an okay book to read. I did have a hard time getting into this book because it is a dystopian book and those types of books are hard for me to get into. This book was really well written but I found myself comparing this book to the book “1984 by George Orwell”.   I read that book back in high school and I always find myself comparing any dystopian books to that one.   In the end I really did enjoy this book. It was written well and it is a book that anyone who loves dystopian novels. It may take you a few chapters to get into the book so I would recommend giving it a couple of chapters before you give up on it.

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About The Book

In the year 2069 the Apocalypse came and went, but Jesus didn’t show up, as some expected.

Instead, a cataclysmic war, natural disasters and pandemics eradicated 90 percent of earth’s population. Now, in 2131, a totalitarian government rules the world from the majestic, opulent capitol of Carthage, Tunisia. Blamed for igniting the war, religion and religious books are banned. Citizens who will not renounce their religion are sent to work camps.

Grant Cochrin, imprisoned in a bleak petroleum camp in what was once North Dakota, leads his family and friends to escape and embark on a long, dangerous quest for a Christian community. Their resource in this journey? A cherished page torn from the now banished Bible—a remnant of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount handed down from Grant’s grandparents.

What if there were an Apocalypse and Jesus didn’t return? What if the survivors found themselves living in a world ruled by a totalitarian government, where religion is forbidden and all religious texts have been destroyed?

In The Remnant, award-winning author Monte Wolverton tells the tale of a band of concentration camp escapees who trek through the lawless American wilderness on a quest for authentic Christianity, only to come face to face with an unthinkable dilemma. The Remnant is a fast-paced story punctuated with dry satire, memorable characters and hard questions about religious institutions.

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About The Author

Monte Wolverton is an award-winning author and syndicated editorial cartoonist. He is associate editor of CWR magazine. He is an ordained minister and holds a MA from Goddard College in Vermont. Along with his wife Kaye, he makes his home in southwest Washington State.

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Trust My Heart by Carol J. Post

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Trust My Heart by Carol J. Post was a sweet story. If I am honest, this book isn’t very memorable to me. I enjoyed it, but it was so much like so many other books I have read. There was nothing that made this book memorable to me which I hate saying because it was nothing special for me I know that other people will totally love this book. I did enjoy this book, and it was a sweet story, but it just doesn’t stick out in my mind. I finished this book a few days ago, and I already have trouble remember much about this book other than that it was sweet and well written. I would be willing to read more books by this author, but this book just didn’t stick out to me. If you love chick lit books, I would give this one a chance and see what you think. If you have read this book what, did you think of it?

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About The Book

Grant McAllister arrives in Murphy, North Carolina, with one aim: to sell his inherited property and leave as quickly as possible. The big-city lawyer has no interest in his late, estranged grandparents or the dilapidated mansion he just acquired. After his high-profile divorce, he should be avoiding perky reporters, too. But Jami Carlisle is honest, funny, and undeniably appealing.

After breaking up with her safe-but-smothering boyfriend, Jami is determined to ace her first big assignment. A story about the McAllister estate is too intriguing to ignore—much like its handsome, commitment-phobic heir. Thanks to her digging, the pieces of Grant’s fraught family history are gradually fitting into place, but also upending all his old beliefs.

The two draw closer as they share their dreams, until misread signals and misunderstandings begin to test their trust. But in the unspoiled beauty of the Smoky Mountains, there’s healing and forgiveness to be found. And for Grant, this unplanned detour may be just what’s needed to finally guide him home…

carol-j-post

About The Author

From medical secretary to court reporter to property manager to owner of a special events decorating company, Carol’s resume reads as if she doesn’t know what she wants to be when she grows up. But one thing that has remained constant through the years is her love for writing. She currently pens fun and fast-paced inspirational romance and romantic suspense stories. Her books have been nominated for a RITA® award and an RT Reviewers’ Choice Best Book Award.

Carol lives in sunshiny Central Florida with her husband, who is her own real-life hero, and writes her stories under the shade of the huge oaks in her yard. Besides writing, she works alongside her music minister husband singing and playing the piano. She enjoys sailing, hiking, camping—almost anything outdoors. Her two grown daughters and grandkids live too far away for her liking, so she now pours all that nurturing into taking care of a fat and sassy black cat and a highly spoiled dachshund

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Christian’s Hope by Ervin R. Stutzman

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Christian’s Hope by Ervin R. Stutzman was a fantastic book.  This is the third book in the series, and I know that I will be going back and reading the first two books because I want to know the entire story from start to finish.  Even though this is the last book in the series, I still understood what was going on, so you don’t have to read the books in order or even read them all if the others don’t interest you.  I enjoyed this book because even though I have read tons of Amish fiction books, this book takes place in a different period.  It is also is one of the few books that I have read from this period in history as well, so I went in not knowing much of what happened during that period.  I have read other books where I didn’t know much about the period and I had a hard time getting into those books, but this book was one that I didn’t want to put down until the book was finished.  I loved this author’s style of writing and how he could make me understand what the characters were feeling and why they did the things that they did.  Once I was done with this book I went and bought digital copies of the first two books in this series because I want to know the whole story like I said before.   If you love historical and Amish fiction, I think you would enjoy this book and should check it out for yourself.  If you have read it, let me know what you think of it.

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About The Book

Christian’s Hope (Herald Press, October 2016)

When Christian Hochstetler returns to the Amish after seven years in captivity, he finds that many things have shifted.

Captured as a child during the French and Indian War, Christian has spent much of his life among Native Americans, who cared for him and taught him their ways. Now that Christian is home, his father wants him to settle back into their predictable Amish life of farming, and Christian’s budding friendship with Orpha Rupp beckons him to stay as well.

Yet Christian feels restless, and he misses his adoptive Native American family—who raised him as their own son. When faced with a life-altering decision, will Christian choose the Amish identity that his father desires for him? Or will he depart from his family and faith community yet again?

Christian’s Hope tells the story of the younger brother of Joseph and son of Jacob, whom readers have come to love in the first two books in the Return to Northkill series. Based on actual events and written by a descendant of the Hochstetler family, Christian’s Hope brings the sweeping epic of the Return to Northkill series to a soul-stirring end.

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About The Author

Ervin R. Stutzman is author of Jacob’s Choice,Joseph’s Dilemma, Tobias of the Amish, and Emma, A Widow Among the Amish. Born into an Amish home in Kalona, Iowa, Stutzman based the Return to Northkill series on the life of his ancestor, Jacob Hochstetler. He has been featured on TLC’s Who Do You Think You Are?

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