Thursday, April 7, 2011

Beside Still Waters by Tricia Goyer

Beside Still Waters: A Big Sky Novel
Product Description:

Raised among the Amish of Indiana, 18-year-old Marianna Sommer plans to get baptized into the church, marry Aaron Zook, and set up life in the only community she has ever known. But when her older brother chooses the world’s path following his rumschpringe, and a younger sibling begins showing interest in Englisch ways, Marianna’s parents move the family to Montana.
Although she is also in her rumschpringe years and not obligated to move, Marianna makes the journey to dutifully help her mother who is expecting another child. Surprisingly, from strangers on the cross-country train ride to the less rigid stance of the new Montana community, many Englisch influences awaken within Marianna—and even her father—the desire to pursue a deeper kind of joy and love for God.
After an accident, Marianna tells her friend Ben a defining story about the Sommer family, and his response further illumines the active relationship God seeks with His followers. In due time, she learns the move from Indiana was not about losing anything, but finding out who God really is. Despite all the shake-ups, Marianna feels a sweet peace, like still waters, in her soul.


My take on this book

Marianna Summer's life started out on a tragic night when her two older sisters were killed in a horrible accident. At the age of nineteen she has always felt as if she doesn't really measure up, after all how can one life replace two, but she does her best to be a dutiful, helpful Amish daughter. While she isn't engaged to Amos Zook it is sort of understood that they are together, he is building them a house and they will eventually marry.
When her dad decides to leave their Amish community in Indiana for a fresh start in Montana, she tells Amos that she will only stay for six months to help her mother with the baby that is to be born and then will come home. Will she return after six months, or will she find a different life in Montana?

I am a huge fan of Amish fiction  and was excited to read an amish story written by Tricia Goyer, a very talented author whose work I have always admired. I feel like in "Beside Still Waters" she really outdid herself. She takes the very popular genre of Amish fiction and gives it a very fresh perspective, by allowing us to see the characters as real, with real problems. Her story didn't idealize the Amish life, and make English life bad, instead by allowing Marianna to learn about Christianity, we easily see the similarities and differences between the two worlds.
The setting was fresh as well. Instead of taking place in Ohio or Pennsylvania she takes us to Montana, and her descriptions were outstanding, making you feel as if you were right there.
The characters are easy to like, and it was nice to see Marianna's character develop and grow throughout the story.Fans of Amish fiction will love this one, but even if the Amish Genre isn't your cup of tea, give this one a try because Tricia Goyer is a master story teller who adds a breath of fresh air to this one! A perfect kick off for the Big Sky Series, that left me wanting more!

About the author:
Using her own experiences as a teen mother, and leader of today’s generation, Tricia’s vision is to be a voice of hope and possibility for teenage girls, pregnant teen girls, mothers and wives through her educational and inspirational speaking, workshops and books. Her intention is to serve ordinary women by encouraging extraordinary things with God’s help. Tricia expresses real life, real hope, for real women.

Tricia is the author of 25 books and has published over 300 articles for national publications such as Guideposts for Kids, Focus on the Family, Christian Parenting Today, Today’s Christian Woman and HomeLife Magazine. She won Historical Novel of the Year in 2005 and 2006 from American Christian Fiction Writers, and was honored with the Writer of the Year award from Mt. Hermon Writer's Conference in 2003. Tricia's book Life Interrupted was a finalist for the Gold Medallion Book Award in 2005.
In her fiction novels, Tricia writes contemporary and historical stories that feature strong women overcoming great challenges. She recreates historic wartime eras with precise detail through perseverance and comprehensive research.
Each of her World War II and Spanish Civil War novels tell the inspiring stories of engaging characters—and a God whose hand is evident in the landscape of history and the obstacles of ordinary lives.

If you would like to purchase this book click here.

For a chance to win a copy stop by Tricia’s Blog  It's Real Life – she’s giving away 10 copies of the book and some  antique Amish salt & pepper shakers. Also – everyone who enters the contest will receive an Montana Amish calendar (while supplies last)!

I was provided a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.



  1. Never read an amish book... yet...

    I always see them at our local walmart, but i haven't got to getting one yet.

    Your made me change my mind.


  2. Thank you for swinging by 2 Against 1 . Don't forget to pop over and link up to TGIF blog hop (Friday). Hope to see you there! Following back now.


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