A Promise of Hope by Amy Clipston

Clipston’s novel, the second book in her Kauffman Amish Bakery Series, arrived in my mailbox earlier this week just in time to be the catalyst to pull me from my reading, and now blogging, funk. This particular book follows Sarah Troyer, a young Amish woman pregnant with twins and grieving over the death of her husband, Peter, in a fire. She is completely surprised when a stranger arrives claiming familial connections to Peter; her husband had arrived in Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania claiming to be an orphan with no family.

One aspect of Clipston’s novels that I love is her ability to weave religion into her story without preaching to the reader or making the language so sweat that the reader develops a bad stomachache. I needed to slip into the pages of a comforting read in order move past the massive amount of stress I’ve felt recently. Four months after reading the first book in the series, I loved how unnecessary it is to read the first book to understand the rest of the series. A few reminders of the main characters in the first book are weaved into the second tale, but it’s just enough to remind the reader of what they have already read or provide background information on Sarah’s family.

The romantic aspects of this novel seemed forced largely because Sarah moves from overwhelming grief to a new relationship surprisingly fast. But I wonder if this is a symptom of the shaky time line of this particular story; it was hard to decipher how much time has passed from chapter to chapter. One particular character, Timothy, is set up to be the main character in the next book in the series, but I found him to be a rather annoying character in the novel. His protection for his sister became overbearing and irritating to Sarah and myself as the reader. I will probably pass on the next book.

Book Mentioned:

  • Clipton, Amy. A Promise of Hope. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2010. Print. 304 pgs. ISBN: 9780310289845. Source: PaperBackSwap.
Book Cover © Zondervan. Retrieved: February 16, 2012.

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