Tuesday, November 8, 2011

When the Soul Mends by Cindy Woodsmall

Book Description:  Returning to the home she fled in disgrace, will Hannah find healing for the wounds of the past?

After receiving a desperate and confusing call from her sister, Hannah Lapp reluctantly returns to the Old Order Amish community of her Pennsylvania childhood. Having fled in disgrace more than two years earlier, she finally has settled into a satisfying role in the Englischer world. She also has found love and a new family with the wealthy Martin Palmer and the children she is helping him raise. But almost immediately after her arrival in Owl’s Perch, the disapproval of those who ostracized her, including her headstrong father, reopens old wounds.As Hannah is thrown together with former fiancé Paul Waddell to work for her sister Sarah’s mental health, hidden truths surface about events during Hannah’s absence, and she faces an agonizing decision. Will she choose the Englischer world and the man who restored her hope, or will she heed the call to return to the Plain Life–and perhaps to her first love? When the Soul Mends is the third and final book in the Sisters of the Quilt series.

My Review:  Having read the first book in the Sisters of the Quilt, When the Heart Cries by Cindy Woodsmall, I quickly (and without realization) began reading this third book in the series; thus, skipping the second book, When the Morning Comes.
When the Soul Mends begins with Hannah Lapp on her way back to her Old Order Amish family and the life she left behind two and half years ago.  Shunned and in disgrace Hannah has vowed never to return but when her sister Sarah, calls with a desperate plea, Hannah quickly packs a few things and heads home.  
She leaves Martin and his children behind---the family she has come to know and love.  Martin has faith that Hannah will return for he plans to propose marriage to her but he has only hinted at marriage by giving Hannah an honorary mother's ring.
Not unlike other books that Cindy Woodsmall has penned this is a fantastic faith filled read!  Getting to know Sarah, more of Hannah's faith, and learning more about Mennonites and Old Order Amish fills this book with a longing that only comes with a story well written.
I like this read because it's not predictable.  The story is interesting and filled with all the ins and outs of family relationships . . . so believable!
I loved the title of this read, too, because he so aptly fits Hannah's and Sarah's lives!  
As I finished this wonderful story I thought of the song, It Is Well With My Soul.  Only God can give you the peace you so desire and this read is all about receiving and believing God for His peace and His love that will make all the wrongs come to right!
*This book was provided for review by  Waterbrook/Multnomah*
   Meet the Author:

Cindy Woodsmall is a New York Times best-selling author whose connection with the Amish community has been featured on ABC Nightline and on the front page of the Wall Street Journal.
Her first novel released in 2006 to much acclaim and became a best seller. Cindy was a 2007 ECPA Christian Book Award finalist, along with Karen Kingsbury, Angela Hunt, and Charles Martin.
Her second book, When the Morning Comes, hit numerous best-sellers lists across the US, including edging into the extended list on the New York Times, coming in at number thirty-four.
Her third book, When the Soul Mends, hit the New York Times best-sellers list, coming in at number thirteen, as well as making the USA Today's best-sellers list.
Cindy continues to write and release best-selling works of fiction, and she's begun work on a nonfiction piece as well.
Her real-life connections with Amish Mennonite and Old Order Amish families enrich her novels with authenticity.
Though she didn't realize it at the time, seeds were sown years ago that began preparing Cindy to write these books. At the age of ten, while living in the dairy country of Maryland, she became best friends with Luann, a Plain Mennonite girl. Luann, like all the females in her family, wore the prayer Kapp and caped dresses. Her parents didn't allow television or radios, and many other modern conveniences were frowned upon. During the numerous times Luann came to Cindy's house to spend the night, her rules came with her and the two were careful to obey them--afraid that if they didn't, the adults would end their friendship. Although the rules were much easier to keep when they spent the night at Luann's because her family didn't own any of the forbidden items, both sets of parents were uncomfortable with the relationship and a small infraction of any kind would have been enough reason for the parents to end the relationship. While navigating around the adults' disapproval and the obstacles in each other's lifestyle, the two girls bonded in true friendship that lasted into their teen years, until Cindy's family moved to another region of the US.
As an adult, Cindy became friends with a wonderful Old Order Amish family who opened their home to her. Although the two women, Miriam and Cindy, live seven hundred miles apart geographically, and a century apart by customs, when they come together they never lack for commonality, laughter, and dreams of what only God can accomplish through His children.
Cindy, her husband, their three sons and two daughters-in-law reside in Georgia.

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