Summer of Secrets by Charlotte Hubbard
Expected publication: February 7, 2012
Publisher: Zebra, Kensington Publishing Corp.
Genre: Inspirational Romance
Welcome to Willow Ridge, Missouri! In this cozy Amish town along the banks of the river, the Old Ways are celebrated at the Sweet Seasons Bakery Cafe, and love is a gift God gives with grace. As summer arrives, Rachel Lantz is looking forward to a whole new season in her life - marriage to strapping carpenter Micah Brenneman, her childhood sweetheart. When a strange Englisher arrives in the cafe claiming to be the long-lost sister of Rachel and her twin Rhoda, Rachel feels the sturdy foundation of her future crumbling - including Micah's steadfast love. As the days heat up and tempers flare, Rachel and Micah will learn that even when God's plan isn't clear, it will always lead them back to each other.
Rachel and Rhoda Lantz grew up in traditional Amish culture. They are enjoying helping their mother in the cafe she was allowed to own as a way to support her family after the death of her husband, and Rachel and Micah are getting ready to let their community know that they are planning to get married. When their long lost sister suddenly shows up and the twins find out they were actually born as triplets, their world is turned upside down. Now Rachel questions if she will still be getting married, and the bishop isn't happy with the developments related to the sister's sudden appearance. "Rebecca" is the complete opposite of the Amish, and she isn't so sure she wants any part of it.
I am almost always interested in books that delve into the Amish faith, and Summer of Secrets didn't disappoint. Charlotte Hubbard did an excellent job describing the Amish culture, their beliefs, and the way they do as they are told by their bishop, no questions asked (usually). The differences in Rebecca and the Amish were also perfectly laid out, and the unconditional love that Miriam (the mom) had for the daughter she didn't get a chance to raise was easy to see. This isn't just a book about the Amish. It is also about faith in God, and if that faith can help you overcome difficult obstacles and reconcile extreme differences. I enjoyed reading this, and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys inspirational fiction.
A copy was provided by the publisher for review.
About the author:
Drawing upon her experiences in Jamesport, the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi, longtime Missourian Charlotte Hubbard writes of simpler times and a faith- based lifestyle in her new Seasons of the Heart series. Like her heroine, Miriam Lantz, Charlotte considers it her personal mission to feed people - to share hearth and home. Faith and family, farming and food preservation are hallmarks of her lifestyle, and the foundation of her earlier Angels of Mercy series. She’s a deacon, a dedicated church musician and choir member, and when she’s not writing, she loves to try new recipes, crochet, and sew.
To find out more about Charlotte or her work please visit http://www.charlottehubbard.com.