A Kauffman Amish Christmas Collection: A Plain and Simple Christmas & Naomi's Gift by Amy Clipston
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Paperback, 362 pages
Published October 9th 2012 by Zondervan
ISBN 0310318769 (ISBN13: 9780310318767)
A Plain & Simple Christmas - Christmas just seems to bring about the desire in everyone to heal families and move beyond past grievances. It’s no different for Anna Mae. She was shunned when she chose to marry an Englischer and leave the Amish community. Now, three years later, Anna Mae and her husband are expecting their first child and she desperately wants to reunite with her family.
There are so many characters in this story that I am proud of their convictions and determination to change things. Anna Mae’s sister-n-law, Kathryn is one of them. She was determined to help Anna Mae out despite the fact that her husband was adamantly against having his sister come visit over Christmas. I was also proud of Anna Mae’s courage. I’m sure it could not have been easy to walk into a house where you weren't sure if you were going to be warmly welcomed or treated like a common criminal. Anna Mae’s determination to make amends with her Amish family was really quite admirable. And Kellan, Anna Mae’s husband, wow, that took quite a bit of nerve to stand up to Anna Mae’s father, who is also the bishop of the Amish community, and give him a lecture on being a good Christian. I sometimes wish I had more of that quality in me, not to be rude, arrogant, or judgmental, but to let someone know when their actions aren't in line with what the Bible says.
Naomi's Gift - How do you sum up a short and sweet Christmas miracle story? Let me try, Caleb has been a widower for two years. His sweet little ball of energy, his daughter Susie, is immediately in love with the town where Caleb grew up. Susie enjoys playing with all of her cousins and she really wants to learn how to bake and quilt. When she meets Naomi at the farmer's market, she is taken in by Naomi's sweet personality and easy to talk to spirit. The two of them have many things in common. Once Caleb finally gets a chance to talk to and get to know Naomi, he is definitely intrigued. And what God has in store for these three is surely a Christmas miracle.
"Don't judge your future by your past." This was my first story by Amy Clipston and I can see why she is a favorite of many Amish fiction fans. I really enjoyed the easy flow of the story. I really enjoyed Susie's excitement over Naomi and her discernment towards Irene. When Caleb stood his ground to Irene, I could have jumped up and down while cheering. Thank God Caleb could sense that something wasn't quite right. For me, I would have liked to see a little more romancing between Caleb and Naomi, but that's just the hopeless romantic in me.
I really enjoyed these two sweet stories, just in time for the holidays. Both of them were short, but powerful in their Christmas message and relaying what the true meaning of Christmas is all about.
DISCLOSURE: I was graciously provided a free copy of this book from Zondervan in partnership with The Christian Manifesto to review it. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.
View all my reviews