Thursday, April 5, 2012

An Uncommon Grace

An Uncommon Grace
Serena Miller
(Howard Books)
ISBN: 978-1451660302
April 2012/352 pages/$15.00

Grace Connor, a military nurse formerly stationed in Afghanistan, hopes that moving to a farm in rural Ohio will help her recover from the ravages of war, and keep her teenage brother out of trouble.

When Levi Troyer meets Grace, he is at his most vulnerable. His stepfather has been murdered and his mother wounded by intruders. Grace saves his mother’s life and Levi is more than thankful. However, any relationship between them is forbidden by his faith.

Even before meeting Grace, Levi had begun to question some of the teachings of his ultra-conservative Amish sect. He has considered leaving, but knows he will be banned forever from having contact with his younger siblings and widowed mother—who need him to survive. Grace is struggling with trying to figure out how to live her life without the man she has grown to love. Meanwhile, a murderer must be caught. Will love and justice prevail?

Prior to writing books, Serena wrote for many periodicals, including Woman’s World, Guideposts, Billy Graham’s Decision Magazine, Reader’s Digest, Focus on the Family, Christian Woman, Dorchester’s True Story and The Detroit Free Press Magazine. She was also a ghost writer for a story published in Chicken Soup for the Mother’s Soul II. She is also the author of Love Finds You in Sugarcreek, Ohio (Summerside Press) and The Measure of Katie Calloway (Revell). She has spent many years partnering with her husband in full-time ministry and presently lives on a farm in southern Ohio near a thriving Amish community. Visit her website to learn more.

I thought I was pretty familiar with the range of Amish sects, but Serena Miller introduces a new ultra-conservative one in An Uncommon Grace. I had never heard of the Swartzentruber Amish of which Levi Troyer's family is a part, but they make Old Order Amish look downright modern! I loved the characters in this novel. Grace's grandmother was full of wisdom and spiritual strength - I want to be like her when I grow up! Levi, though grappling with the restrictions of the Swartzentruber sect and the bishop's oppressive leadership, still remains respectful and non-hostile toward Amish beliefs in general. I love his tender care and concern for his family, especially his younger brothers as he is determined to give them patience and grace that that he did not experience as a child. And Grace is both charming and a bit feisty as she challenges Levi in her attempt to understand some of the apparent inconsistencies in the Swartzentruber beliefs and practices. Of course, there are a few less than charming folks who inhabit this novel as well, such as the bishop's daughter! Combining faith and suspense, An Uncommon Grace is a great book for your TBR list.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Howard Books as part of their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


View blog reactions

1 comment:

Beth said...

Any Amish book is a MUST read for me. Cannot wait to get my hands on this book! Thanks for the review.