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Friday, January 28, 2011

The Bridge of Peace...Review

About the book:
Love alone isn’t enough to overcome the obstacles between a man and a woman.

Lena Kauffman is a young Old Order Amish schoolteacher who has dealt all her life with attention raised by a noticeable birthmark on her cheek. Having learned to move past the stares and whispers, Lena channels her zest for living into her love of teaching. But tensions mount as she is challenged to work with a rebellious young man and deal with several crises at the schoolhouse that threaten her other students. Her lack of submission and the use of ideas that don’t line up with the Old Ways strengthen the school board’s case as they begin to believe that Lena is behind all the trouble.

One member of the school board, Grey Graber, feels trapped by his own stifling circumstances. His wife Elsie has shut him out of her life, and he doesn’t know how long he can continue to live as if nothing is wrong. As the two finally come to a place of working toward a better marriage, tragedy befalls their family.

Lena and Grey have been life-long friends but their relationship begins to crumble amidst unsettling deceptions, propelling each of them to finally face their own secrets. Can they both find a way past their losses and discover the strength to build a new bridge?

I really liked The Hope of Refuge and was anxious for this book, but will admit to being a little disappointed in it.  While I loved Lena and Grey, I felt the whole premise/plot was a bit of a stretch. I had a very hard time believing Dwayne's psychopathic character and how he was able to influence so many people against Lena. I also admit to not understanding Grey's relationship with Elsie and I was very, very annoyed that there were no repercussions/apologies forthcoming from Peter's parents. 

Ada and Deborah return as do Ephraim and Cara who are dealing with Cara's struggles to accept the Amish way of life and abandon her Englischer ways.  Ada and Deborah finally figure out how to make Ada's House a successful business and Deborah begins to find healing after Mahlon's desertion.

The tone of this book is a bit more serious and there are certainly darker elements one does not normally associate with Amish fiction. Cindy Woodsmall has a wonderful way of showing the human side of people, regardless of faith or lifestyle. 

While not as good as The Hope of Refuge, I do look forward to the next one. 

This is the second book in the Ada's house series and it helps if you've read the first one, The Hope of Refuge.

Thanks to Waterbrook Multnomah for the opportunity to review this book.  You can learn more about Cindy Woodsmall here.  You can purchase your own copy here.

Read 1/11

* * *
3/5 Stars

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