BookReview A Simple Prayer by Amy Clipston

BookReview A Simple Prayer by Amy Clipston
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Publisher's Description
Amy Clipston is one of my favorite Amish Fiction/Romance authors. She writes stories that have endearing characters; they feel like friends when I am done reading about them. Clipston’s stories are heartfelt and deal with family issues that have a dose of faith added in mix. A Simple Prayer is book four in the Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series. I read book one, A Hopeful Heart, and really enjoyed it. I looked forward to reading A Simple Prayer and meeting new
characters and revisiting old friends from book one.This book is about Aaron Ebersol and Linda Zook overcoming very different personal struggles. The life events of friends and family were intermingled in their story as sub plots.

There was a lot of dialogue between Aaron and Linda. They became friends over meals at the bed & breakfast where Aaron is staying and Linda works. The descriptions of the time they spent in the kitchen were enjoyable. They were both so likable that I hoped from the beginning their friendship would turn into a romance. As I read A Simple Prayer, I saw how resentment and unforgiveness caused pain and trouble in the lives of both the main and secondary characters.

The story was told in third person. The language was simple and easy to follow. There was a lot of dialogue between the characters with a good amount of scene description. Each character had a unique personality and expressed themselves as such. There was enough information given about the characters from previous books in the series that I didn’t feel confused by their presence. Clipston introduces the characters at the beginning of the story but she didn’t give every detail about them. As I read, I Iearned more about their personalities and lives. They secondary characters fit nicely into the story. Clipston did a good job of depicting the Amish life and faith.

I didn’t find anything surprising as I read. There was an issue with items that went missing but they  weren’t intended to be a mystery to the reader; it was easy to know from the beginning to know who was involved. I couldn’t wait to read each chapter. The restoration of relationships with others and God was the primary theme of this story. Spiritual elements of the story were shown through character growth. This novel showed Amish who had turned English, English who were turning Amish, and ex-Amish returning to Amish. I think this helps the reader see that God will lead us where He wants us to be when His time is right.

Although this is the fourth book in the series, it worked as a stand-alone novel. As I read, I thought of two things: first, that the story of the prodigal son in the Bible was being retold; second, about the “what ifs” in life. What if one of the character’s parents hadn’t died? What if Aaron’s mother didn’t have a health issue that brought him home? We will never understand the answers to our “what ifs” but we have to trust God is in control. There is a happily ever after for several characters but it took some of them a while to get there. Their problems or romance didn’t start with this book. I enjoyed the first book in this series and I enjoyed this book. It makes me want to read the two in between to see exactly what happened to get the characters to where they are in A Simple Prayer. I feel fans of Amish fiction and romance would want to read this story. I would recommend it anyone who appreciates clean, sweet romances. Clipston has created a story with characters that feel like real people dealing with issues in their relationships with family that could happen to anyone at anytime.

tammycookblogsbooks 5/5 book rating

 I received a free copy of this book 
in exchange for my honest review.

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