Carolee H. (Tucson, AZ)
A great family story of sticking through rough times!
What a great and amazing story about a family that falls on hard times and is saved my a hardworking caring Amish family. They learn valuable life lessons and are able to rebuild a stable family by learning from the Amish community they are staying with. I could definitely relate to the family and kids arrogance and how we all take life for granted. This is a great easy read on family values and rebuilding of a broken family's relationship.
Linda J. (Manchester, MO)
Returning to What Matters
Maybe it’s my age, perhaps a longing to return to the Christmases of my youth that made me connect with this book. I confess – I love thrillers, especially a good vampire read, but this simple book with the simple theme of loving each other and being non-judgmental really struck a chord with me.
I read almost half the book setting in the ophthalmalogist’s office (he was very slow!) and finished the rest in the next two days. While over-used, the term “heartwarming” perfectly describes this book.
The Hobarts have it all – a beautiful home in Charlotte, North Carolina, the requisite BMW, three children who enjoy all the accoutrements the technological age can offer.
Wife Meg feels more and more, however, that something is missing. Her husband James is handsome, successful (obviously), but her life is so hectic that she has a color-coded appointment book to keep track of all the family’s comings and goings.
The two oldest children, 15 year old Lizzie, and 13-year old Will, seem to have no sense of values, and being grateful for what they have escapes them. Meanwhile, nine year-old Sam takes everything to heart, and is a worrier.
An unexpected turnaround puts the Hobarts with an Amish family during the holiday season-no computers, no cell phones, and no television. How they come to terms with their lives and their priorities will keep readers turning the pages.
Author Cynthia Keller did a wonderful researching the Amish and their way of life. It’s obvious she put her heart and soul into this book.
Sharon S. (Stanley, N.C.)
"An Amish Christmas" by Cynthia Keller
The Hobart family, an affluent southern family seem to have it all, or do they? Beautiful home, healthy children, husband, an attorney in a powerful law firm in Charlotte. Life as they have known it comes apart at the proverbial seams!
A freak car accident finds the Hobart family in a new unknown world. As this new puritan lifestyle opens up to them the Hobarts come to realize they are truly rich in what matters most, FAMILY.
Great quick read for the busy holidays. Will remind us all the true importance of life!
Barbara C. (Lincolnshire, IL)
An Amish Christmas
What a delightful and inspiring read! I could definitely identify with the Hobart family. Meg, the matriarch, is a woman committed to her husband and family yet when faced with adversity she quickly adapts and rises to the challenges ahead. She echoes so many women today and projected real feelings that many women share when their spouse deceives them and destroys the trust their marriage had been built upon. Her teenagers were ripe for a real world adjust as they enter the Amish world of the Lutz family. I really enjoyed how their detour in Life provided them with the experiences to face their new journey with hope, excitement and a mended family.
Helen S. (Sun City West, AZ)
Author Cynthia Keller succeeds in presenting the details of the affluent lifestyle that Meg and James Hobart and their three children enjoy in suburban Charlotte, North Carolina, before circumstances abruptly force them to leave it all behind.
An accidental meeting with David Lutz on an icy road in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, thrusts the Hobart family into the midst of the Lutz’s Amish family life. Keller again succeeds in her portrayal of the lives of Catherine and David Lutz and their large extended family as they quietly engage in their daily tasks on their farm.
Meg Hobart’s refrigerator magnet with the words of North Carolina’s state motto “To be, rather than to seem” was scarcely mentioned in the novel – once, when Meg slipped the magnet into her pocket as the family left Charlotte, and later when she found it still in her pocket as they were leaving the Lutz’s home. Although the magnet was out of sight, its words provided one of the novel’s themes when Meg realized that this motto exemplified the profound changes in each member of her family as they experienced the Amish way of life.
I highly recommend Cynthia Keller’s well-written novel 'An Amish Christmas'.
Marissa P. (Tarrytown, NY)
Heartwarming Tale of Patience, Love and Forgiveness
The Hobart family seems to have it all, a beautiful home, fancy clothes, fast cars, but all taken away in an instant. They are forced to leave their possessions and home behind to go and live with family they hardly know in order to survive. On the way to their destination they get into an accident involving an Amish Horse and Buggy. The Hobart's car is badly damaged and the Amish family offer their home to the Hobart's while the car is being repaired. Through this intervention the Hobart's learn that the Amish ways of grace and hard work lead to greater fulfillment than the lives they had known before. It is a wonderful read with a lesson for all.
Terrie J. (Eagan, MN)
Heart Warming Story
I really enjoyed this book! It was a heart warming story, taking place during the holidays. The story brings a troubled family together as they find out what is really important. Although it is predictable, it is well written and in these trying times, a story like this is what many of us need. I would recommend that this story be shared with the family during the holidays.