A young Amish boy ventures from Pennsylvania to California in this richly imagined historical novel from the author of An Unseemly Wife.
Author E.B. Moore is a remarkable writer, she has fashioned a story reflecting the Amish way of life, of the thinking in 1872 regarding the outside world, especially the “English,” the name all people who are not Amish go by. I read and recommended Moore’s previous book ‘An Unseemly Wife’ and if you were fortunate enough to discover that novel, then you know you’re in for a treat.
The story of a father, heavy-handed with his son Joshua, a bad confrontation causes the shed they are in to erupt in flames, and Joshua strikes his father in self-defense and then runs away in terror. You get an eleven year-old boy terrified, hurt, and running away from home, leaving his beloved mother Miriam and sisters behind. And for ten years, we follow him through farms, saloons, and wagon trains, seeking a family that will love him and at the other end of the spectrum, you have Miriam, unbelieving that he is dead, with an instinct that something is wrong but unable to put a truth on the feeling so she nurses her husband Abraham, badly burned and incapable of functioning as a deacon to his people.
Down the years, you can see the changes in all of them and Moore weaves her magic again. This book has more than met the criteria for a well-researched background and is based on stories that were handed down by her grandfather. The only fault is the utter realism and harshness of events that overtake Joshua, leaving you wishing for more sunshine. That said however, the story blends very well and I thank E.B. Moore for this book, her descriptive wandering under the wide open plains leaves us breathless. Highly recommended.
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