Thursday, November 14, 2013

Book Review: Plunging into New Territory

Bethany House generously provided a complimentary copy of The Secret Keeper in exchange for an honest review.
     Beverly Lewis transports the reader from the modernity of city life to the antiquated ways of the Amish. Jennifer Burns, referred to as Jenny, wants to part with modern life as she has been drawn to the Amish manner of living for years. Finally, Jenny makes the plunge into Hickory Hollow following her heart much to the surprise of her family. Samuel and Rebecca Lapp become her adopted family and teach her the ways during her time of Proving. Many in Hickory Hollow are skeptical of the seeker, however, many want her to succeed and join their family. What happens when an outsider wants to join an exclusive group? To what extent will one pain oneself to fit in?
      To complicate matters during Jenny's Proving Time, she meets Kyle. It is her initial desire to serve God and lead a simpler life. Yet, when Kyle walks into her heart she finds herself being consumed with thoughts of him rather than just of God. Throughout the story, Jenny learns that loving others as she goes about her day is the most tangible way to worship God.
      The Secret Keeper intertwines good intentions with human missteps. Sometimes secrets are kept to protect others. Other time those secrets do a lot more damage than good. Jenny and the
 characters surrounding her are no exception, harboring secrets and longings of the heart that separate rather than reconcile. The story hinges upon the desire for reconciliation. It is the fuel for the fire.
     I enjoyed the reading for the most part. It was interesting to have a better understanding of Amish ways. The storyline isn't much different from other novels in this genre. However, the theological and spiritual currents are the aspects that made this novel worth reading for me. Any reader of Amish fiction will most likely enjoy The Secret Keeper.


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