A pleasant read: "The Photograph" by Beverly Lewis

Cover Art

about the book....

He studied the picture more closely, finding it curious that the young woman looked so boldly into the camera while wearing a white prayer Kapp shaped like a heart--the characteristic head covering for the Lancaster County Old Order Amish. 

Why would a devout girl have her picture taken?

When her sister Lily disappears only months after their widowed mother's passing, Eva Esch fears she has been wooed away from the People. Yet Lily's disappearance isn't Eva's only concern: She and her sisters must relocate once their older brother takes over the family farmhouse. Then Jed Stutzman, an Amish buggy maker from Ohio, shows up in Eden Valley with a photo of a Plain young woman. Eva feels powerfully drawn to the charming stranger--but the woman in the forbidden photograph is no stranger at all. . . .

my review....

With an intriguing premise and utterly likeable characters, "The Photograph" is sure to please readers who have enjoyed Lewis' prior offerings. The description of this novel definitely hooked me, as I found myself wondering what would cause an Amish girl to forsake her community's teaching about photographs being forbidden, and choose to get her picture taken? As I read through this story, I couldn't help but appreciate the intricate knowledge the author appears to have about the Amish and their way of life, including those things that tie the Amish communities together and those things that set each district apart. Such attention to detail lends a wonderful air of authenticity to "The Photograph". And Eva Esch is truly a loveable character, one who has dealt with such deep heartache in her young life, yet remains true to her faith and to her connection to her family and Amish community. Lewis does a great job at weaving Eva and Jed's story together and theirs is definitely a sweet love story to behold.

However, I just didn't find that this story held me in its grip as some of Lewis' other novels have done. Although there were definitely some page-turning parts, about a third of the way into the story I just found that little seemed to progress in the plot and I was contemplating whether to finish it. I am glad I did, for the last couple of chapters tie up the story nicely and overall the book does provide  a pleasant read.

I award "The Photograph" a mild recommendation and a rating of 3 out of 5 stars. Those readers who typically love Beverly Lewis novels will surely love connecting with these characters and immersing themselves in the Amish lifestyle.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 

 about the author....

Beverly Lewis

Beverly Lewis, born in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch country, has more than 17 million books in print. Her stories have been published in eleven languages and have regularly appeared on numerous bestseller lists, including the New York Times and USA Today. Beverly and her husband, David, live in Colorado, where they enjoy hiking, biking, making music, and spending time with their family. Learn more at www.beverlylewis.com.

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