Tuesday, June 10, 2014

A Season of Change by Lynette Sowell (Seasons in Pinecraft series, Book #1)

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received the book for free from the publisher through the Litfuse Publicity Group book  blogger campaign and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

ABOUT THE BOOK: (Information taken directly from LitFuse Publicity's Promotions page.)

Book One in the NEW Seasons of Pinecraft series | A Season of Change
An Amish widower finds love in unexpected places.
Amish widower Jacob Miller believes it was a mistake to visit the Amish village of Pinecraft for winter vacation, especially after his daughter is struck by a car. Stranded in Sarasota until his daughter recovers, Jacob grows increasingly wary of events that unfold in his unfamiliar surroundings—including the strange curiosity of Englischer Natalie Bennett.
Natalie never thought her circus career as an aerial silks artist would end with a blown-out knee at the age of 25. She also never knew her late mother had a secret—that she was once Amish.
When Natalie meets the Millers at the Sarasota hospital, she is attracted to their warm hospitality and simple ways—and soon wonders if they can help her find her mother’s family. As Jacob and Natalie fall in love, their worlds collide. Will their differences tear them apart? Or will their love be strong enough to blend their clashing cultures?

Lynette Sowell was born in western Massachusetts in the shadow of the Berkshire Mountains, raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and now makes her home on the doorstep of the Texas hill country. The award-winning author of more than 15 titles, Lynette loves reading, cooking, watching movies, and is always up for a Texas road trip. When not writing fiction, she works in medical transcription and is a freelance writer and columnist for her local newspaper.

Dynamic Uno here:  When I realized A Season of Change took place in Pinecraft, I was even more excited than usual.  You see, I live in a suburb of Tampa, Florida, which is just north of Sarasota- where Pinecraft is located!  

In fact, I've been to Yoder's Amish Village several times and can't wait to go back!  The food at the restaurant is FABULOUS!  Really--it's like the food your grandma used to make.  Meatloaf, macaroni and cheese, apple butter for the fresh sliced bread, and lots of pie!   Everything is homemade and not from some box--like I normally use.  (Now I'm hungry...)

I love to shop at their market and deli area.  My favorite thing to buy, aside from everything, is their sweet mint tea!  Around Christmas, I went there with my aunt and I forgot to order several gallons ahead of time, but they went ahead and made them for me as a special order.  Talk about generous! 

I've eyed the pizza shop and Big Olaf's Ice Cream place, but haven't ventured in yet.  Maybe in the fall when things cool down a bit and I can enjoy the outdoors without melting.  Now that I've read more about the village area, I may even be a "tourist" and venture around a bit more to see if I can find some of the locations in the story.

And now back to the story...I thought it was really neat that Natalie worked as a former circus performer and now teaches children how to do the acrobatics in the silks.   Having her dress up as a clown to entertain the children in the hospital at Christmas was a welcome treat--especially since they were so far from home and in desperate need of some cheer.  (The Circus Clown School is actually right down the road from Yoder's.) 

Jacob seemed like a lost little puppy with his children.  With no wife to help with their care, I'm glad that his grandmother was able to help while they had their extended stay.  Zeke seemed like a bright young boy and Rebecca seemed very mature for her age--although they'd been through a lot of heartache for being so young.

I enjoyed reading about the developing friendship between Natalie and Jacob's family--especially when she learned that her own mother had been Amish and found part of a quilt she had started.  

I was a bit frustrated by the "rules" that Jacob had to follow--they remind me a bit of my grandmother's denomination--but I understand their reasoning and can see how it may not be a problem for him since he was raised with those beliefs.

Of course, I was really excited to read about the developing feelings Jacob and Natalie had for one another, but I couldn't figure out a middle ground as Mammi had suggested because their worlds are so very different.  I'm so glad that everything worked out in the end and I can't wait to read more about the other villagers! 

If you like to read romance with a twist, then you need to read A Season of Change!  Who knows, maybe I'll see you around Pinecraft sometime.  ((I'll be the one buying all of the Sweet Mint Tea.)

Let me know what you think and Happy Reading!!!

A Season of Change Lynette Sowell

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