The three most important parts of a book are: a well constructed plot, compelling characters, and a satisfying conclusion.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

⭐️⭐️⭐️ANNA'S CROSSING (An Amish Beginnings Novel, #1) By Suzanne Woods Fisher

Publisher:  Fleming H Revell
Pages:  336
Release Date:  March 3, 2015
Genre:  Amish Historical Fiction
Format:  Paperback

About the Book:  When Anna Konig first meets Bairn, the Scottish ship carpenter of the "Charming Nancy," their encounter is anything but pleasant. Anna is on the ship only to ensure the safe arrival of her loved ones to the New World. Hardened by years of living at sea, Bairn resents toting these naive farmers--dubbed "Peculiars" by deckhands--across the ocean. As delays, storms, illness, and diminishing provisions afflict crew and passengers alike, Bairn finds himself drawn to Anna's serene nature. For her part, Anna can't seem to stay below deck and far away from the aloof ship's carpenter, despite warnings.
When an act of sacrifice leaves Anna in a perilous situation, Bairn discovers he may not have left his faith as firmly in the past as he thought. But has the revelation come too late?
Amish fiction favorite Suzanne Woods Fisher brings her fans back to the beginning of Amish life in America with this fascinating glimpse into the first ocean crossing as seen through the eyes of a devout young woman and an irreverent man. Blending the worlds of Amish and historical fiction, Fisher is sure to delight her longtime fans even as she attracts new ones with her superb and always surprise-filled writing.

Wanda's Thoughts: 
1737 – Anna Konig and a group of Amish people were leaving Ixheim, Germany, going to a New World. They were leaving their peaceful and pastoral valley for a world of unknowns, and the voyage was filled with uncertainties. They sacrificed and endured so much just to own a piece of sod in America. The Peculiar people, of a peculiar sect, were headed to Penn’s Woods and their passage was secured on a vessel, the Charming Nancy.

The people were confined to the lower decks, which were pitiful, with the stale air, stench, and sickness. Life was tenuous and could be altered in an instant. They suffered delays, endured seasickness, cold, and much more.

The characters were unique with effective and realistic dialogue ---

Anna had a rare strength of character and showed much determination and compassion. She’d left her home, grandparents, church, and everything she’d loved and lived for to embark on this journey. Anna had lived in a sheltered world, not caring about earthy possessions.

Bairn had a mystique about him and was a man full of contradictions. He was a wayward soul who claimed to not believe in God, but was filled with kindness, especially towards Anna. Bairn’s title is carpenter of the Charming Nancy and is the third person in charge. He lived in a world filled with temptations, and felt a lot of turmoil in his life.

Felix, a mischievous 8 year-old, was like a brother to Anna. He is a very curious Amish boy and as a result finds himself in trouble throughout the story. His mother’s sadness affected him in a deep way.

The character of Georg Schultz is not likable at all, being shadowy, relentless, and utterly despicable.

Christian Muller – As the minister, his duty was to be sure everyone followed the straight and narrow path and conformed to what it meant to be a church member. He had a meddlesome wife, Maria, who constantly kept things stirred up.

Anna’s Crossing had an intriguing premise, with a story of expectations, despair, and faith. The author did a beautiful job with the vividly described scenes. There were some scenes that I found to be very dynamic. Unfortunately it took me to long to become engaged in the storyline and I found myself plodding through sections and losing focus.

The book is readable, but not exceptional – just lukewarm. My rating is 3.5 stars.

About the Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher is the bestselling, award winning author of fiction and non-fiction books about the Old Order Amish for Revell Books, host of the radio-show-turned-blog Amish Wisdom, a columnist for Christian Post and Cooking & Such magazine.

Her interest in the Amish began with her grandfather, who was raised Plain. A theme in her books (her life!) is that you don’t have to “go Amish” to incorporate the principles of simple living.

Suzanne lives in California with her family and raises puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind. To her way of thinking, you just can't life too seriously when a puppy is tearing through your house with someone's underwear in its mouth.

Suzanne can be found on-line at: