And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children. Isaiah 54:13 KJV

Monday, August 18, 2014

Healing at the Ocean

I received a free copy of this book from Handlebar Publishing for the purpose of review. All opinions are my own.

I love the water. I've always felt an amazing sense of calm and peace around the river, lakes, and especially the ocean. I grew up camping and swimming and the water is just a happy place for me. I see my children feel that same sense of peace at the water's edge and my heart soars. Some of God's most beautiful creations are blue and stretch as far as the eye can see. Wanda E. Brunstetter must have a similar love of the ocean. It (specifically Sarasota, FL/ Pinecrest) is the scene of her newest book The Healing Quilt.

As you can see from the video, this book has a lot of characters! It was a little difficult in the beginning to keep them all straight but each of their stories is unique from the others and I quickly felt like I knew each of them. Lamar and Emma Miller have come to Pinecrest to ease Lamar's arthritis. Lamar has found real joy in the beach setting but Emma begins to feel homesick. She reluctantly decides to hold a quilting class- something she enjoyed doing in their hometown in Indiana. Now there are 2 previous books telling of these quilting classes but I have not read either of those.

healing quilt The Healing Quilt
So this quilting class quickly attracts 6 very different people in the area. There's a man (eventually a couple of men), a pregnant lady, a retired widow, a young teen in a wheelchair, and a single waitress. As they begin the class (some reluctantly), Emma prays God will use her simple quilting class to help these folks along the way. The stories each develop well and soon we see the challenge each quilting student is facing. Their struggles are all very easy to understand and many of us could relate to one or more of them. Lamar and Emma have sweet gentle spirits and their Plain lifestyle just complements their demeanors.

I really enjoyed this book. I haven't read an Amish or Mennonite fiction in a little while and I quickly became engrossed in this one. The story lines are easy to follow (once you learn the characters and easy to read!). I really thought I had most of it all figured out by the middle but Brunstetter made sure to throw in some surprises. I now want to go back and read the other 2 books in this series to learn more about some of the characters from Emma's previous quilting classes. Of course I also love the vivid descriptions of the beach and ocean as they transport me back to my own happy place. If you love easy fiction that you can lose yourself in for a bit then I would recommend The Healing Quilt.

I received a free copy of this book from Handlebar Publishing for the purpose of review. All opinions are my own.

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