Saturday, May 14, 2011

Book Review: What the Heart Sees

I enjoyed this collection of three short Amish romances by Kathleen Fuller. The first book, A Miracle for Miriam, takes place around Christmastime. Miriam, who considers herself ugly and uninteresting, has been interested in handsome Seth Fisher since she was a teen. But it takes a severe accident and God's work in his heart to bring about a change of direction in Seth's life. When he finally realizes Miriam is the girl for him, she can't believe him, and it takes a lot of work on his part to convince her! I really enjoyed both Seth and Miriam as characters, and this was my favorite of the three novels.

The second book is titled A Place of His Own. Amanda Graber is delighted when her longtime best friend and next-door neighbor, Josiah, returns from Ohio after ten years. However, it doesn't take long for Amanda to realize that Josiah has changed. He takes a lot of care to put distance between them, just as her feelings for him begin to grow from friendship to love. Eventually Josiah realizes that he doesn't have to let his past determine his future, and the story ends happily.

What the Heart Sees, #3 in this collection, is the heartwarming story of Ellie, a blind but independent young Amishwoman, and Chris Miller, a former Amish boy-turned-Englischer. When Chris returns to the Amish community after many years, he is carrying a lot of bitterness with him. But as his friendship (and later, love) for Ellie grows, he is able to find peace with God and the ability to forgive.

All of these were sweet stories, although to me they seemed a little "light on the Amish." I saw them as romance stories with a sprinkling of "Amish," if that makes sense. The way the characters spoke and thought seemed a little too "Englisch" to me at times. Perhaps I'm too used to reading other popular Amish series which delve more deeply into Amish beliefs and customs. Still, I found these stories enjoyable, and the fact that each of the three novels was fairly short made them quick, fun reads.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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