About the book:
Jaime and C. J. Fitzpatrick began their married life as most couples do–in love and looking forward to a bright future together. But four years later they’ve drifted apart and are almost ready to call it quits.
Mattie Riehl was hoping to give her husband Sol the Christmas gift they have both longed for–news that a baby was on the way. But as usual, she is disappointed. The holidays bring an acute awareness to Mattie that her dream of a big family isn’t likely to become a reality.
Then a winter storm raging outside blows the Fitzpatricks into the Riehl home–and into a much slower pace of life. Can these two couples from different worlds help each other understand the true meaning of love this Christmas?
With her trademark plot twists and attention to detail, Suzanne Woods Fisher offers readers a beautiful Christmas story of love, forgiveness, and what truly matters in life.
Her interest in the Amish began with her grandfather, W.D. Benedict, who was raised Plain. She has many, many Plain relatives living in Franklin County, Pennsylvania, and travels back to Pennsylvania, as well as to Ohio, a couple of times each year for research.
Suzanne has a great admiration for the Plain people and believes they provide wonderful examples to the world. In both her fiction and non-fiction books, she has an underlying theme: You don’t have to “go Amish” to incorporate many of their principles–simplicity, living with less, appreciating nature, forgiving others more readily– into your life.
When Suzanne isn’t writing or bragging to her friends about her first new grandbaby (!), she is raising puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind. To Suzanne’s way of thinking, you just can’t take life too seriously when a puppy is tearing through your house with someone’s underwear in its mouth.
What I Thought:
I am always intrigued by the Amish, and their lifestyle. It is hard to imagine living without electric, especially considering I won’t even camp without it! This book to me was significantly more than a peek into the Amish (which is was that too). It was a story of two very different women, both struggling. Jamie and Mattie find a little strength from each other, and are surprised when they each at separate times, feel like “the strong one”. Jamie began feeling some sort of pity for Mattie and her life, only to realize what great depth of emotion, whether it be the love between her and Sol, or the bond between mother and child, and even Mattie’s apparent sadness, were all things to strive for, not to pity.
Jamie gains the most from her journey into Mattie’s world. She was childish, and selfish to start. But gained so much insight to move forward with. This book was a short read, but had many levels worth reading. I did feel sort of left hanging in the end, as though I wanted to hear more of these women’s stories as they moved forward from their brief encounter in a Lancaster snowstorm.