An Amish Christmas Kitchen: Three Novellas Celebrating the Warmth of the Season by Leslie Gould
As the weather grows cold and the nights grow long, the cheer and warmth of the Christmas season is one thing all readers can find comfort in. This collection from bestselling Amish fiction novelists Leslie Gould, Jan Drexler, and Kate Lloyd finds the beating heart at the center of the holiday and offers three novellas that celebrate family, faith, and especially the sights and smells of a bustling holiday kitchen.
Leslie Gould tells the story of how, in the wake of a heartbreaking loss, a young Amish woman finds unexpected comfort and hope in a yearly baking tradition surrounding the local Lancaster Christmas market. Jan Drexler offers a sweet tale of a shy Amish woman who decides to use her gift for sweets to woo a local Amish boy with her beloved Christmas cookies. And Kate Lloyd offers a heartwarming tale of a woman's unexpected discovery about the truth of her past, and the warm and welcoming Amish family table she finds herself invited to on Christmas.
Fans of Amish fiction are in for a treat because three great authors have contributed to this new Christmas anthology. An Amish Christmas Kitchen features three novellas centered around the heart of most homes--the family kitchen--and the extra treats that are often created in those kitchens during the Christmas season.
An Amish Country Christmas by Leslie Gould focuses on Noelle's determination to have all of her family together for their traditional family Christmas and still supply the increased amount of baked goods needed for the special six-week Christmas Market. Noelle's grief over her Mamm's recent death is overwhelming and she misses their joint baking efforts but there is another reason why she feels so stressed. After three years of being gone, Jesse King is now back and Noelle finds herself with many unanswered questions about the man that she once loved.
In An Amish Christmas Recipe Box Jan Drexler spins the tale of Ada Weaver and her efforts to get the attention of Amos Hertzler by tempting him with cookies made from her grandmother's special recipes. As Ada continues The Great Cookie Campaign to attract Amos, she also shares her cookies with Matthias Yoder, a former classmate who has always liked her. Before long, Ada begins to question if what she thought she wanted is truly what she needs!
An Unexpected Christmas Gift by Kate Lloyd touches on adoption and the need to uncover your past and find your roots. Maria's discovery that she was adopted by an English couple shortly after her birth sends her searching a trail that leads her to an Amish community and perhaps, her biological mother. This is a touching tale that should have a disclaimer about having plenty of tissues on hand!
I found all three of these stories to be heartwarming and uniquely different but they all share the common themes of the importance of family and the need to remember just why we celebrate the Christmas season. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to experience the joys of Christmas in early October and it is definitely for anyone who likes Amish fiction, holiday stories, and happily ever after. As an added bonus, there are three delicious recipes to try.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Jan Drexler and Bethany House Publishers. A positive review was not required and I am voluntarily sharing my honest opinions.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Leslie Gould is the #1 bestselling and Christy Award-winning author of thirty novels. She received her MFA from Portland State University and teaches writing at Warner Pacific University. Leslie enjoys traveling, hiking, and history. She and her husband, Peter, are the revolving-door parents of four children and two cats. Visit her at http://www.lesliegould.com/.
Jan Drexler brings a unique understanding of Amish traditions and beliefs to her writing. Her ancestors were among the first Amish, Mennonite, and Brethren immigrants to Pennsylvania in the 1700s, and their experiences are the inspiration for her stories. Jan lives in the Black Hills of South Dakota with her husband of thirty-five years, where she enjoys hiking in the Hills and spending time with their expanding family. Visit her at http://www.JanDrexler.com/
Author Kate Lloyd is a passionate observer of human relationships. A native of Baltimore, Kate spends time with family and friends in Lancaster County, PA, the inspiration for her best selling novels Leaving Lancaster, Pennsylvania Patchwork, and Forever Amish, the third book in the Legacy of Lancaster Trilogy. Her newest novel, Starting from Scratch, and a novella in An Amish Christmas Kitchen. Kate and her husband live in the Pacific Northwest, the setting for Kate's first novel, A Portrait of Marguerite. Kate studied art and art history in college. She's worked a variety of jobs, including car salesman and restaurateur. For relaxation, Kate enjoys walking with her camera in hand and travel. Visit her at http://www.katelloyd.com
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