Publication Date: 11/04/2014
Publisher: Penguin Group
Imprint: New American Library
Genre: Amish Fiction
(Received for an honest review from New American Library)
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Indiebound, itunes
Naomi King on the WEB: website, blog, facebook, goodreads
Books in the series:
One Big Happy Family
1. Amanda Weds a Good Man
2. Emma Blooms at Last
Coverart: Click the Image for a larger, clearer view of the covers in this series.
Excerpt from, Emma Blooms at Last, courtesy of the author's website.
Romance is in the air during the fall wedding season in the Amish community of Cedar Creek. But while one loving couple prepares to tie the knot, Amanda and Wyman Brubaker’s large family faces a threat from outside their happy circle...and must learn to pull together.
Recently wed Amanda and Wyman Brubaker are thrilled that their children from previous marriages have blended together to form a strong family. But when the construction of Wyman’s new grain elevator is delayed, making the project more expensive than anticipated, Amanda’s determination to rally the kids into taking on work to improve the family’s finances comes into conflict with Wyman’s sense of responsibility as head of the household....
Meanwhile, as James Graber and Abby Lambright prepare for their long-awaited nuptials, folks gather from far and wide. Amanda’s nephew Jerome has long been smitten with James’s sister Emma and wants to seize this chance to woo her. But Emma’s been burned once and is twice shy of trusting the fun-loving, never-serious Jerome. As Emma and Jerome struggle to understand each other, and find the courage to make a leap of faith, the Brubakers face a bigger challenge than they first anticipated and begin to discover just what it means to fight...the Amish way.
Naomi King takes readers back to Cedar Creek in the second book in the One Big Happy Family series, Emma Blooms at Last. Readers who have followed the Cedar Creek and One Big Happy Family series will be thrilled with this latest addition. This book not only does it tell the story of Emma, but it continues Amanda's story from the first book and incorporates other characters from the Cedar Creek series. It's the kind of book that wraps everything up in a neat little package that will leave readers a little sad that it's ending but very satisfied with the outcome.
What I liked:
Naomi King knows how to write about the Amish people and their faith. Often Amish books are very predictable because they have to follow a certain kind of format due to the faith. There are no steamy scenes or many of the usual problems and conflicts found in regular contemporary fiction. It's a whole different world and King excels at bringing it to life. She takes a story that may be too simple to be much fun reading and gives it a spin that makes it hard to put down. Readers looking for a good clean romance will love her work as well. King proves that the simple life doesn't have to be boring.
Emma has always been a bit of a tough character in the series. After reading this book I now understand that most of the awkward air she gave off in the other books was mostly due to shyness. She is painfully shy and that means she is very hard to read by the other people around her. Especially, Jerome. He really likes her but she confuses him a lot of the time. I thought that Emma gained a lot of firmness and strength in this book. She took her desire to help people and did something about it in this book and that was nice to see. I also liked the whole idea that she was "always a bridesmaid, but never a bride." That was a nice touch that added to the enjoyment of her relationship with Jerome.
I liked Jerome a lot. He was confident in himself and his faith. Even though he had, had some rough patches, he was happy with the simple Amish life in this book. He was helpful and even romantic. I loved the way he went about making sure he could spend time with Emma and he was never deterred by her standoffish attitude. He was able to see beyond her shyness and understand it. He made a very good hero for this book. Since this was his third try at a good relationship it was a good thing the third time was the charm.
One of the things I liked about this book beyond Emma and Jerome's relationship was the fact that King tied up Amanda's story line. I loved the big happy family and how they have started to mesh and get to know each other better. This book basically continues their story and adds so much to the overall arc of the entire book. A blended Amish family wasn't something I was expecting with the first book, but I really enjoyed the concept and was happy to learn more about them in this one.
If you like Amish Fiction you really can't go wrong with a book from Naomi King. She has a knack for writing about the Amish that allows the reader to see beyond the rigors of their faith and the simplicity of their lifestyle, so that they can see them as individuals and families, as just normal people and I liked that very much here. Emma was a good heroine and Jerome held up as the hero. A good heartwarming novel.
Emma Blooms at Last is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.
I'm giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!
About the Author:
A longtime resident of Jamesport, MO, home of the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi, Naomi King now lives in Minnesota with her husband and border collie. She is the author of other novels set in the Amish community of Cedar Creek, including Abby Finds Her Calling and Rosemary Opens Her Heart, as well as Book One of the One Big Happy Family series: Amanda Weds a Good Man.
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