This is the story of the complications–and the fireworks of exploding tempers that arise–when an Old Order Amish man, Aden Zook, falls in love with an Old Order Mennonite girl, Annie Martin. For those of us who are neither Amish or Mennonite, our first thoughts might be that people of those faiths are so similar there shouldn’t be any problems intermingling in marriage. Au contraire! By reading this book, we discover Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonites are actually worlds apart. It would seem easier for an individual of either of these faiths to marry a total outsider, than attempt to make a match between these two beliefs.
The families of both Annie and Aden are totally against this romance and attempt to break them up in a variety of ways. To further complicate the matter, Annie’s grandfather, her Daadi Moses, is in a business partnership with Aden’s family. This is a business alliance that has existed for more than one generation with these two families. When Daadi Moses learns of the romantic relationship, he threatens to pull out of the business–which would cause complete financial ruin for Aden and his family.
What will Annie and Aden do? Will they go against their families risking shunning from both their religious communities, as well as, their own families? Will they sacrifice Aden’s family’s business for the sake of their love, knowing the Zook family has no other source of income? Can they break off their relationship, and go their separate ways? How could they live with themselves hurting their loved ones, but can they live without each other? There does not seem to be a good answer no matter what Annie and Aden might choose.
Intermingled in the story is the cherry orchard. It was planted originally for the hope of love two generations earlier, and its location becomes a place for current love to bloom. Will Annie and Aden’s love still exist once the blossoms have left the cherry orchard?
This is the third book I have read by this author about Amish life. I think this story is the most true to life–as far as how a relationship like this would be handled in the Old Order Amish and Old Order Mennonite communities. This story was beautifully written, and it kept me wondering how it would resolve all these questions up to the end. Faith was interwoven as a part of the narrative. This was an enjoyable account and pleasant to read. I would highly recommend this to anyone looking for an easily readable tale.
The publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book through WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for the purpose of review. All opinions expressed are my own, and I have not been compensated in any other manner. Despite my receiving the book free, it has not influenced my judgment, and I have given an honest opinion.
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