Thursday, March 20, 2014

Book Review: A Simple Hope

A Simple Hope (Lancaster Crossroads #2)Author: Rosalind Lauer
Publication Date: March 4, 2014
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Series: Lancaster Crossroads # 2

Ever since the accident that confined him to a wheelchair, James Lapp has fought relentlessly to regain his strength. He knows he must be whole and healthy to run his family’s orchard and provide for Rachel King, the young woman he plans to marry. But when he defies his father’s wishes and seeks treatment outside their close-knit Amish community, James discovers just how long and treacherous the road to recovery will be. Unwilling to saddle a wife with his troubles, James decides he must part with the woman he loves.
Rachel won’t give up her dream of being a devoted wife to James, and it breaks her heart to watch him shut her out. Then their lives change forever when a runaway Englisher girl hides in the Lapp orchard. Rachel and James feel they must risk the disapproval of their friends and neighbors to help her. Will the young stranger bring them closer—or will the consequences of a shared secret tear them apart once and for all?
Revealing the wonder of plain, everyday blessings, A Simple Hope burns bright with the power of love to heal even the deepest wounds.

“I wish there was some way I could help you,” she said, her voice hoarse with tears. “But you keep closing the door on me James. You’ve got to stop doing that. Please, let me in.”

Was it wrong to hope that he would walk again? Dat wanted James to give up this hope, but who could know the Almighty’s plan for tomorrow and the day after that?

Somehow, someday when he was walking again, he would make it all up to her.

After visiting a few Amish communities some years ago, I fell in love with their spirit, sense of kindness, and of devotion. I have loved reading about them ever since. This story is a true example of the morals and values that their community really upholds. This is the first book I have read by Rosalind Lauer, but is actually the second book in this series. The story revolves around James and Rachel, an amish couple that have suffered a terrible vehicle accident. James was severely injured and has been paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair ever since. This put a damper on his pride and his ability to help his family. It also hindered his relationship with Rachel, whom he was about to propose to. This book focuses around their struggle and how they learn to grow and trust one another.

Rachel and James stole my heart from the very beginning of this book. Rachel prays for James daily and always has his best interests at heart. She is completely heartbroken from the start and her unselfish manner is what initially drew me to her. She is truly in love with him and does not care what might come with James’s health and condition; she just knows that she wants to be with him. James is a bit of an iceberg from the start, mainly because his pride has been shaken. He is having to depend on others for help with basic needs, and it takes Rachel some time to break his iced over heart.

If you are at all interested in the Amish lifestyle, this is a great book to introduce you to the idea. Rachel’s family, as well as James’ family, is quite large and when they are all together I can picture and hear all the noise and laughter that is taking place. I recommend this book to anyone who loves a good romance, stories about the bonds of family, and anyone who would like to branch out and try something new!

***A copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Ballantine Books in exchange for my honest review***

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