MY NOVEL THOUGHTS:
I requested this book because it was a Christmas book and I'm game for basically any Christmas book but I didn't expect such a cute novel. I'm so glad I requested this novel because it could potentially become one of my favorite holiday novels (I don't know yet, I'd have to read it again haha).
The Angel of forest hill is about a young woman who is asked to leave her home for a while in order to help a man, Joel, take care of his children in wake of a tragic event. Rose finds comfort in West Virginia and agrees to marry Joel to fill his families needs in hopes of finding a home without harsh critics. Their marriage is not of love but of a partnership is how they say it. Over the years Rose and Joel work together to raise the children and slowly get to know each other. In this two perspective novel you get to see that somewhere along the way, from Rose bringing Joel back to the land of the living and Joel showing Rose a kindness she's never known, they find new love. But their coming together is not easy road.
"Why couldn't she stop believing in her lack of worth and believe Joel?"
Misunderstandings, lack of communication and a new widow who's come to town puts in more than a few bumps to make the ride all the more confusing for our young Rose and Joel.
What I didn't like: The only thing I didn't like about the book was the fast skipping of the years to get into the present time. I mean I get why Woodsmall did it but I'm nosy and want to know how Joel and Rose interacted during the years that were skimmed over. Then again I guess it wasn't really needed because the book flowed really well without it... You know what just ignore the curious, nosy person haha...
What I liked: You know what I liked about this book a lot? It's that even though this book would be considered a heavy topic, it's not a heavy book. Woodsmall gives Rose and Joel a light humor that lessens the weight of such a topic.
"What a story. I don't buy it."
I found myself shaking my head at the many misunderstandings that Rose and Joel have throughout this book because, me as the reader, I know that if they just talked they could have solved their issues a lot faster. But alas, we wouldn't have a book if they actually understood each other now would we? O.o
MY OVERALL RATING:
The Angel of Forest Hill was a fast and refreshing read. I recommend this book to people who are looking for a holiday book and/or fast read. It's great really.
I received a free copy of the novel from the publishing company, through bloggingforbooks.com, in exchange for a honest review.
BLURB || source: Goodreads
A time of anticipation. A season of miracles.
Because of Joel s impossible situation, twenty-one-year-old Rose must sacrifice everything. As days pass into years in the midst of the beautiful hills, the laughter of children, and God s providence is it too much for Rose to hope for love in return?
An amazing journey toward love and belonging, filled with the wonder of the season of Christ s birth.
When Old Order Amish Rose Kurtz is asked to leave her family, travel deep into West Virginia, and help Joel Dienner with his children in the wake of tragedy, the quiet young woman recognizes a home where she might find kindness instead of criticism and hope replacing harsh words. She agrees to stay in Forest Hill and become Joel s wife for the sake of his family needs, but their marriage is to be a partnership, one built from need, not love and affection.
As the years pass, Rose continues to beckon Joel to join life again, to take joy in his growing children, and to awaken his heart to the possibility of new love. Joel hopes that Rose can move beyond deep-rooted hurts to see the beautiful Christmas ahead, their season. But will the arrival of a beautiful widow and a series of misunderstandings reverse how far Rose and Joel have come?"
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Cindy Woodsmall
Cindy Woodsmall is a New York Times and CBA best-selling author who has written nineteen (and counting!) works of fiction and one of nonfiction. She and her dearest Old Order Amish friend, Miriam Flaud, coauthored the nonfiction, Plain Wisdom: An Invitation into an Amish Home and the Hearts of Two Women. Cindy's been featured on ABC Nightline and the front page of the Wall Street Journal, and has worked with National Geographic on a documentary concerning Amish life. In June of 2013, the Wall Street Journal listed Cindy as one of the top three Amish fiction writers.
She is also a veteran homeschool mom who no longer holds that position. As her children progressed in age, her desire to write grew stronger. After working through reservations whether this desire was something she should pursue, she began her writing journey. Her husband was her staunchest supporter as she aimed for what seemed impossible.
She’s won Fiction Book of the Year, Reviewer’s Choice Awards, Inspirational Reader’s Choice Contest, as well as one of Crossings' Best Books of the Year. She’s been a finalist for the prestigious Christy, Rita, and Carol Awards, Christian Book of the Year, and Christian Retailers Choice Awards.
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 cape 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. Over the years Cindy has continued to make wonderful friendships with those inside the Amish and Mennonite communities—from the most conservative ones to the most liberal.
Cindy and her husband reside near the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains in their now empty nest.
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