Apr 24, 2012

Arms of Love by Kelly Long

The year is 1777. America is in turmoil. And Amish life is far different than today.

Pennsylvania in the late 18th century, once called William Penn’s Woods, was an assortment of different faiths living together for the first time in American history. Included in this tapestry was a small and struggling population called Amish.

Surrounding this peaceful people were unavoidable threats: both Patriots and the British were pillaging land and goods for the sake of the war, young Amishmen were leaving the faith to take up arms and defend freedom. A simple walk in the untamed forests could result in death, if not from bullet or arrow, then from an encounter with a wild animal.

Amid this time of tumult, Adam Wyse is fighting a personal battle. To possibly join the war efforts and leave his faith, which would mean walking away from the only woman he’s ever loved: Lena Yoder. But for that love he’s made a promise that may keep them apart permanently.

When Adam withdraws from Lena, she’s forced to turn to his brother, Isaac, for support. Must Lena deny her heart’s desire to save Adam’s soul? And will life in this feral and primitive New World be more than this peace-keeping people can withstand?

This is an Amish fictional novel with a difference.  Set in the late 1700's, nothing is normal or predictable. From the rugged wilderness in the midst of war times, the characters face unbelievable heartache, injustice and personal difficulty. Lena thought that the only stable part of her life was her love and future with Adam.

When Adam breaks up their relationship on the day that Lena's mother dies, she is devastated. Faced with raising her newborn infant sister and two other siblings while her father has been imprisoned, Lena is desperate to keep the family together.

Arms of Love is a very fitting title of this awesome story of forgiveness and redemption.  The characters are captivating, and the story is totally different than I expected. I especially enjoyed the story of Ruth, the young widowed mother of an infant who had lost her house and everything she owned to a fire.  Nothing would ever be the same in the Yoder and Wyse families after Ruth appeared on the scene. 

I highly recommend this book and will definitely watch for the next book in this new Amish Beginnings series.

Disclosure: Ebook received through Net Galley courtesy of Thomas Nelson, in exchange for my honest review.

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