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Review: Christmas in Apple Ridge

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Review: Christmas in Apple Ridge

05 Dec Posted by in Holiday Themed Books, Reviews | Comments Off on Review: Christmas in Apple Ridge
Review: Christmas in Apple Ridge

Christmas in Apple Ridge by Cindy WoodsmallChristmas in Apple Ridge by Cindy Woodsmall
Reviewed by: Jennifer Roman
Genre: Christian, Amish, Christmas, chick lit, romance
Publisher: WaterBrook Press
Publication Date: October 9, 2012

A three-in-one collection of interconnected Amish stories, Christmas in Apple Ridge follows different couples through trials and tribulations of relationships and the Amish way of living.

The Sound of Sleigh Bells introduces readers to Beth Hertzler, who works with her Aunt Lizzie in the family’s dry goods store. A good businesswoman, Beth keeps coming up with good ways to make her customers happy while increasing business. She successfully ties the Amish community to the English community through the store and sells items that are appreciated by a wide variety of customers. Part of Beth’s determination to work so hard stems from her fiancé’s death. She has gone beyond the typical mourning and now wears black to keep people from encouraging her to date someone else. When Lizzie interferes and deceives Beth into writing to Jonah Kinsinger, Beth and Jonah fall for each other. Once Beth and Jonah discover Lizzie’s meddling, however, things look bleak. Maybe a sleigh that Jonah has been restoring will help Beth let go of her guilt and start a new life with Jonah.

Mattie is the main character in The Christmas Singing. Known for her expert baking skills, Mattie is a young Amish woman who bakes cakes and other goodies for her bakery. She focuses completely on the bakery to avoid the heartache of losing her boyfriend, Gideon. After he suddenly breaks off their relationship, she moves away and starts a bakery to get over Gideon. When Mattie’s bakery is destroyed in a fire, she returns to Apple Ridge to re-start her life near her family, which is near Gideon. Even though she tries to avoid him, they run into each other at the numerous community singings, and she finds out the real reason for his breakup. Once she knows the whole story, she has to decide to forgive him and be happy or give up on him completely.

In the Dawn of Christmas, readers meet Sadie Yoder, who is stinging after her ex-fiancé who is caught cheating on her with her cousin just weeks before the wedding. Sadie moves away to start over and even serves as a missionary to Perú, even though her family does not approve. Her parents summon her to her mother’s family’s town of Apple Ridge, where Sadie knows that she will be expected to find a husband and get married. The first night home, Sadie takes a moonlit horse ride, only to find Levi injured in a field after his horse throws him. She gets him medical attention and realizes she is attracted to him. Levi wants nothing to do with girls, however, but to keep their families from pestering them about finding someone, they decide to pretend to court. In the process of doing so, they fall for one another just before Sadie is scheduled to leave for her next trip to Perú. Sadie has to face her family and Levi in order to find her own happiness, and Levi needs to realize that he needs Sadie

Cindy Woodsmall is known for her writing of Amish stories, and in this collection, she weaves together many different characters who show up in all stories. Readers can read each book alone and not have problems following the stories or characters, but it is more fun to read them all together. The stories focus on the Amish way of life and give readers a chance to experience a different perspective. I thoroughly enjoyed these stories and look forward to Cindy Woodsmall’s next book.

Because these are books written in the spirit of Amish tradition, there is little to nothing that would be offensive to readers.

Rated G: There is no violence, sex, or offensive language.

Review copy provided by the publisher. Thank you!

Jen Roman

Jen RomanJen is a lifelong book lover. When she is not working or sleeping, she can usually be found reading something. Nothing makes her happy like snuggling up on the couch with a good book, a blanket, and her Labrador Retriever, Daisy. She loves mysteries and suspense, but will happily read just about any genre. She refers to her love of books as a “sickness,” and has stacks and stacks of books waiting in the wings to be read. Jen is a strong supporter of her local library and highly encourages others to support their libraries.

When not reading, Jen can be found crafting, playing with Daisy, volunteering, or spending time with her friends. Jennifer is married and lives with her husband Steve, her cat Roberta, and Daisy in North Canton, OH.


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