ABOUT AUTHOR: Mary Ellis grew up near the Amish and fell in love with them. She has now written nine bestselling novels set in their communities. When not writing, she enjoys gardening, bicycling, and swimming. Before "retiring" to write full-time, Mary taught school and worked as a sales rep for Hershey Chocolate. Her debut Christian book, A Widow's Hope, was a finalist for the 2010 ACFW Carols.
ABOUT BOOK: Living in Harmony is the first book in bestselling author Mary Ellis's New Beginnings series. It's about fresh starts and love...and how faith in God and His perfect plan for our lives provides us with the peace and joy we desire.
Amy King--young, engaged, and Amish--faces difficult challenges in her life when she suddenly loses both of her parents in a house fire. Her fiancé, John Detweiler, persuades her and her sister Nora to leave Lancaster County and make a new beginning with him in Harmony, Maine, where he has relatives who can help the women in their time of need.
John's brother Thomas and sister-in-law Sally readily open their home to the three newcomers. Wise beyond his years, Thomas, a minister in the district, refuses to marry Amy and John upon their arrival, suggesting instead a period of adjustment and counseling. During this time Amy discovers an aunt who was shunned. She wishes to reconnect with her, but this puts a strain on her relationship with John.
Can John and Amy find a way to live in happily in Harmony before making a lifetime commitment to one another?
MANDATORY PLEASE ANSWER ONE OF THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS TO BE ENTERED INTO THE DRAWING!
#1. In Living in Harmony, following a family tragedy, Amy King moves to Maineto live with her fiance's relatives, to help her forget. Often moving is a good option to help heal pain. Did you ever relocate after a difficult event, even temporarily, and did it help you heal?
#2.Amy struggles with the idea of bending to a husband's will, as mandated in Scripture. Oddly, a shunned aunt brings her closer to John by helping her surrender her will to God. Have you ever struggled with the husband as the head-of-the-family in your own marriage?
#3. What do you like reading about most - in reference to Amish live style, what do you like least?
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#3 I like reading about the simplicity of the lifestyle, how the Amish are attuned to nature and the seasons. I find it is calming, and influences me to strive for more simplicity in our family. (and sometimes, I even get the urge to cook! Lol!)
I don't like to read about scenarios that are so "out there" that I know, in real life, an Amish person would never deal with.
3) I love reading about the simplicity of life for the Amish and about the closeness between family members and the friendships with those in the community. I know it is a part of their beliefs/rules but I hate the "shunning" of people who break their rules. I think that is most cruel. Especially when members of the shunned persons family cannot speak to them or help them in any way.
I believe as a wife we all struggle with bending to our husbands will. We must remember that bending does not mean we are a whipping board but better yet a sounding board for our husbands. I struggle with this a lot as I was very independent as a child and as an adult before marriage. My husband traveled with his work and now that we are both retired it is a big adjustment, so now I travel for fun and he stays home and takes care of the dogs.
#3: I like reading about the landscapes and the views, seeing what they see through their eyes. And I also like to read about the food. What do I like the least? WOW. Probably the stubborn nature of the old school. It is a good thing, but they are very set in their ways, no doubt about it.
Question 1, My husband and I relocated to TN from KY and brought our adult daughter who had a difficult breakup and it did help her to heal. She found a job she loves and enjoys her coworkers. It worked out extremely well, and I am thankful for the move. We left an adult son behind that we all miss. That is the down side but he had a fiance at the time. I would love this amish story. Thank you for the giveaway!