Old Order Amish Rhoda Byler’s unusual gift and her remarkable abilities to grow herbs and berries have caused many to think her odd. As rumors mount that Rhoda’s “gift” is a detriment to the community, she chooses isolation, spending her time in her fruit garden and on her thriving canning business.
Miles away in Harvest Mills, Samuel King struggles to keep his family’s apple orchard profitable. As the eldest son, Samuel farms with his brothers, the irrepressible Jacob and brash Eli, while his longtime girlfriend Catherine remains hopeful that Samuel will marry her when he feels financially stable.
Meanwhile, Samuel’s younger sister Leah is testing all the boundaries during her rumschpringe, and finds herself far from home in Rhoda’s garden after a night of partying gone badly. But Leah’s poor choices serve as a bridge between Rhoda and the King family when a tragic mistake in the orchard leaves Samuel searching for solutions.
Rhoda’s expertise in canning could be the answer, but she struggles with guilt over the tragic death of her sister and doesn’t trust herself outside her garden walls. As the lines between business, love, and family begin to blur, can Rhoda finally open up to a new life? And what effect will this odd, amazing woman have on the entire King family?
What I Thought:
This was the first time I have ever read an Amish book. It wasn’t that I particularly shied away from them, I just never really found one that I wanted to buy. When the opportunity came to read one I jumped on it. I feel really lame in same, “oh my goodness I loved it so much,” but that’s sort of what i feel like saying. I really really did. The characters were really endearing, real, and complex. They didn’t come off as stuffy or unrelatable. What they experienced and how they handled those experiences was something that I could see in my own life; and anyone else’s for that matter. That is important thing for me when I’m reading a book. I generally like books where I am drawn into the story in such a way, that I feel for the characters on a personal level. Like, maybe I could be in their world. Much to my happiness it is the first book in a series, and I can’t wait to get my hand on “The Winnowing Season”.
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Where can you get it:
$11.99 kindle version (which I read on the Kindle App on my iPhone)
you can snag a paperback version for around $11.00 on Amazon
**Disclaimer – I received this book in my partnership with Blogging for Books and Multnomah Publishing. I was not compensated in any other way.