Tag Archives: Suzanne Woods Fisher

Top 10 Tuesday — Character Traits

8 Oct

This week, Top 10 Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, is focused on character traits. One of the things I love about Christian fiction is the way authors grow their characters. It is wonderful to see how new perceptions of themselves and God impact their traits, both negative and positive. Introverted characters learn to step out in faith, independent characters learn to rely on God and others, those locked in shame by past mistakes are set free — all great examples of God’s grace and mercy. The characters and their traits that I have shared below are certainly not exhaustive. I’d love to hear your favorites.

 

Top Character Traits

 

Bookish Introvert — Nora Bradford from True to You by Becky Wade

Charming Troublemaker — Luke Schrock from Mending Fences by Suzanne Woods Smith

Faithful Love — Maria Von Wedemeyer from My Dearest Dietrich by Amanda Barratt

Heroic Honor — Dietrich Bonhoeffer from My Dearest Dietrich by Amanda Barratt

Independent and Self-Sufficienct — Gabby Rowley from The Killing Tide by Dani Pettrey

Jealous Suitor — Haakon Norgaard from Sons of Blackbird Mountain and Daughters of Northern Shores by Joanne Bischoff

Resentful Sibling — Thor Norgaard from Sons of Blackbird Mountain by Joanne Bischoff

Shameful Mistake — Annisa Bell from One Final Breath by Lynn H. Blackburn

Utterly Clueless — Evelyn Tavish McTavish from Fragments of Fear by Carrie Stuart Parks

 

Book Review and Giveaway — Stitches in Time

7 Oct

About The Book

Book: Stitches in Time

Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher

Genre: Contemporary Amish fiction

Release Date: October 1, 2019

Detachment had worked well as a life strategy for horse trainer Sam Schrock. Until he met Mollie Graber . . .

New to Stoney Ridge, schoolteacher Mollie has come to town for a fresh start. Aware of how fleeting and fragile life is, she wants to live it boldly and bravely. When Luke Schrock, new to his role as deacon, asks the church to take in foster girls from a group home, she’s the first to raise her hand. The power of love, she believes, can pick up the dropped stitches in a child’s heart and knit them back together.

Mollie envisions sleepovers and pillow fights. What the 11-year-old twins bring to her home is anything but. Visits from the sheriff at midnight. Phone calls from the school truancy officer. And then the most humiliating moment of all: the girls accuse Mollie of drug addiction.

There’s only one thing that breaks through the girls’ hard shell – an interest in horses. Reluctantly and skeptically, Sam Schrock gets drawn into Mollie’s chaotic life. What he didn’t expect was for love to knit together the dropped stitches in his own heart . . . just in time.

Suzanne Woods Fisher invites you back to the little Amish church of Stoney Ridge for a touching story of the power of love.

Click here to get your copy!

 

My Impressions:

Stitches in Time, the second book in Suzanne Woods Fisher’s Deacon’s Family series, takes the reader back to Stoney Ridge and the Plain community readers have come to love. The book finds all the familiar residents of the town living life as they always have — with simplicity, caring, and a bit of quirk thrown in. Newlyweds Luke and Izzy Schrock are adjusting to married life, Fern Lapp is learning to live without her beloved Amos, and the church has welcomed newcomer Mollie Graber to teach their scholars. Everything is going well until an unlikely man is selected by lot as deacon and the nearby group home full of preteen and teenaged girls needs some emergency help. The Amish step in and life is not the same! I loved how the community decided not to remain insulated from the needs of the English world, but instead reached out with their typical practicality and love. Both Plain and English learn great lessons. As always, Fisher balances serious issues such as addiction and fostering with just the right amount of humor. Relationships are key in this novel, and run the gamut of married couples, courting couples, and fostering families. Fisher uses Psalm 23 and the many references to sheep in both the Old and New Testaments to speak truth of God’s care and provision into a number of the character’s lives. While this novel continues the stories begun in Mending Fences, it can be read as a standalone. But I recommend beginning at the beginning to make sure all of this series’ goodness is savored. 🙂

This one is not just for fans of Amish fiction. I definitely recommend Stitches in Time to all readers looking for a thoughtful and heartwarming story.

Recommended.

Audience: Adults.

(Thanks to Revell and Celebrate Lit for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

 

About The Author

Carol-award winner Suzanne Woods Fisher writes untold stories about inspiring people. With over one million copies of her books sold worldwide, she is the bestselling author of fiction and non-fiction, ranging from Amish Peace: Simple Wisdom for a Complicated World to the historical novel Anna’s Crossing.

More from Suzanne

Have you ever felt the tug to become a foster parent?

On any given day, there are nearly 438,000 children in foster care in the United States. Most states have a critical need for more foster parents, and the number of children placed in foster care increases yearly.

There are plenty of assumptions about having foster children, but most are incorrect. The media has a tendency to focus on the negative, but from all the research I conducted to write this book, for every bad news story, there were two good ones. Good stories just don’t make the news.

Below are some of the most common assumptions about foster care, with corrected information that is applicable across the United States (but keep in mind that each state has their own requirements).

Myth: Kids in foster care are bad or troubled.

Truth: Children in foster care are good kids taken out of a troubled situation. They need a caring foster parent who is patient and understanding. When given the opportunity, most of these children begin to thrive.

Myth: To be a foster parent, you need to be married and own a home and be a college graduate.

Truth: You don’t need to be married or to own a home or even be a college graduate. That means if you’re single or renting, you can be a foster parent.

Myth: I can’t afford to be a foster parent.

Truth: There are monthly reimbursement rates for children in foster care based on the level of care you provide. Medical and dental care is paid through state Medicaid programs.

Myth: Most kids in foster care are teenagers.

Truth: The average age of a child entering foster care is seven years old.

Myth: Most kids are in foster care because their parents have abused drugs.

Truth: Now, this one is not a myth. It’s true. There are fifteen categories that can be responsible for a child’s removal from a home. Drug abuse from a parent has had the largest percentage increase.

Myth: Fostering could require a commitment until the child turns eighteen.

Truth: Generally, children remain in state care for less than two years. Only six percent spend five or more years in foster care.

Myth: It’s too hard to give a child up to his biological family.

Truth: Most children are in foster care for a short time, returning to their biological families. Reuniting a child to his family is the ideal situation. Foster families provide a safe haven for a child. Healthy grieving is to be expected, but it’s for the right reasons. It’s healthy.

Myth: You can’t adopt foster children.

Truth: In 2016, more than 65,000 children—whose mothers and fathers parental rights were legally terminated—waiting to be adopted. Also in 2016, more than 20,000 children “aged out” of foster care without permanent families. Research has shown that those who leave care without being linked to a “forever family” have a higher likelihood than the general youth population to experience homelessness, unemployment, and incarceration as adults.

Is there room in your heart and family for a child in need? There are many ways to get involved, some that do not even require foster care. One recommendation: volunteer with The National CASA Association (Court Appointed Special Advocates) for Children. You can find out more information here: www.casaforchildren.org.

Or consider small ways to connect to children in need—after school tutoring at your public library. Volunteering at a community center. Buy Christmas gifts for a family in need through an Adopt-a-Family program with a local church. Support a family who does provide foster care with respites—babysitting or meals. There’s many ways to get involved to care for children in need. And every little bit makes a difference.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, September 26

The Becca Files, September 26

SusanLovesBooks, September 26

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 26

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 27

Through the Fire Blogs, September 27

Adventures of a Traveler’s Wife, September 27

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 28

Inspiration Clothesline, September 28

Texas Book-aholic, September 28

Book bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, September 29

Jeanette’s Thoughts, September 29

Blogging With Carol , September 29

Hookmeinabook , September 29

The Avid Reader, September 30

Mia Reads, September 30

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 30

janicesbookreviews, October 1

My Devotional Thoughts, October 1

Maureen’s Musings, October 1

CarpeDiem, October 1

For Him and My Family, October 2

Stories By Gina, October 2

Activating Faith, October 2

A Reader’s Brain, October 3

EmpowerMoms, October 3

Wishful Endings, October 3

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 3

Carla Loves To Read, October 4

Pause for Tales, October 4

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 4

Inklings and notions , October 5

Quiet Quilter, October 5

Vicky Sluiter, October 5

Hallie Reads, October 5

Blossoms and Blessings, October 6

For The Love of Books , October 6

For the Love of Literature, October 6

Bigreadersite, October 7

By The Book, October 7

She Lives to Read, October 7

Moments, October 8

Southern Gal Loves to Read, October 8

Girls in White Dresses, October 8

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, October 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 9

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of her book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click HERE to enter.

 

Book Review: Mending Fences

27 Sep

Every saint has a past. Every sinner has a future.

Luke Schrock is a new and improved man after a stint in rehab, though everyone in Stoney Ridge only remembers the old Luke. They might have forgiven him, but nobody trusts him.

Amos and Fern Lapp allow Luke to live at Windmill Farm under two conditions. First, Luke must make a sincere apology to each person he’s hurt — a four-page, single-spaced list. Second, he must ask each victim of mischief to describe the damage he caused.

Simple, Luke thinks. Offering apologies is easy. But discovering the lasting effects his careless actions have caused . . . that isn’t so simple. It’s gut-wrenching.

And his list keeps growing. Izzy Miller, beautiful and frustratingly aloof, also boards at Windmill Farm. Luke’s clumsy efforts to befriend Izzy only insult and annoy her. Eager to impress, Luke sets out to prove himself to her by locating her mother. When he does, her identity sends shock waves through Stoney Ridge.

614hFKkbVRL._US230_Suzanne Woods Fisher has a specialty: she writes about real people living in faith-based communities. With over 750,000 copies of books sold worldwide, she is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than twenty-five books, ranging from children’s books (The Adventures of Lily Lapp series) to novels (The Choice) to non-fiction books (Amish Peace: Simple Living for a Complicated World).

When Suzanne isn’t writing, she’s probably playing with puppies. She’s been involved with Guide Dogs for the Blind for over fifteen years. Raising puppies, she says, is like eating a potato chip. You just can’t stop at one.

Readers are invited to stop by Suzanne’s website at: http://www.suzannewoodsfisher.com.

 

My Impressions:

As her bio states, Suzanne Woods Fisher’s strength is writing “about real people living in faith-based communities”. Whether set in a Plain community or in an historical context, her characters feel like your own neighbors, friends, and family. Mending Fences is no exception. Bringing favorite characters from past books together with new, she creates a story of second chances and new beginnings. While this novel will certainly appeal to fans of Amish fiction, it will resonate with anyone looking for a heartwarming story.

Luck Schrock has been a secondary character in a number of Fisher’s novels, but in Mending Fences he is one of the mains. Back from another stint in rehab, Luke wants a chance to prove he is a changed man. While the Amish are quick to offer forgiveness, trust is hard to come by. And for Luke it can be painful. I loved how Luke doggedly worked through making amends for his many pranks. He learned that what seemed harmless fun cost others in meaningful ways. The other main character, Izzy Miller, is looking for a brand new start in the first safe place she has lived. She is attracted to many of the aspects of a Plain life, but her old ways of thinking get in the way of grace. Forgiveness, both giving and receiving, is a strong theme. As always, Fisher liberally sprinkles humor within the pages of Mending Fences. There are laugh out loud moments combined with poignant scenes as more than one character accepts God’s love.

There’s more to come from The Deacon’s Family series as a few story lines are left unresolved. But the wait will be a short one — book 2, Stitches in Time, is due out in just a few days!. I am looking forward to seeing just what else Fisher has in store for Luke, Izzy, and the other residents of Stoney Ridge.

Recommended. 

Audience: adults.

To purchase, click HERE.

(Thanks to Library Thing and Revell for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

First Line Friday — Stitches in Time

27 Sep

I finished Mending Fences by Suzanne Woods Fisher just a few days ago and immediately picked up book two in the series, Stitches in Time (due out October 1). I absolutely love the Amish community that Fisher has created. Full of true to life characters, they could be your own neighbors, friends, and family. I heartily recommend these books.

What are you currently reading. Leave a comment with the first line of the book closest to hand, and then head over to Hoarding Books for more fun!

 

 

New to Stoney Ridge, schoolteacher Mollie has come to town for a fresh start. Aware of how fleeting and fragile life is, she wants to live it boldly and bravely. When Luke Schrock, new to his role as deacon, asks the church to take in foster girls from a group home, she’s the first to raise her hand. The power of love, she believes, can pick up the dropped stitches in a child’s heart and knit them back together.

Mollie envisions sleepovers and pillow fights. What the 11-year-old twins bring to her home is anything but. Visits from the sheriff at midnight. Phone calls from the school truancy officer. And then the most humiliating moment of all: the girls accuse Mollie of drug addiction.

There’s only one thing that breaks through the girls’ hard shell–an interest in horses. Reluctantly and skeptically, Sam Schrock gets drawn into Mollie’s chaotic life. What he didn’t expect was for love to knit together the dropped stitches in his own heart . . . just in time.

Suzanne Woods Fisher has a specialty: she writes about real people living in faith-based communities. With over 750,000 copies of books sold worldwide, she is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than twenty-five books, ranging from children’s books (The Adventures of Lily Lapp series) to novels (The Choice) to non-fiction books (Amish Peace: Simple Living for a Complicated World).

When Suzanne isn’t writing, she’s probably playing with puppies. She’s been involved with Guide Dogs for the Blind for over fifteen years. Raising puppies, she says, is like eating a potato chip. You just can’t stop at one.

Readers are invited to stop by Suzanne’s website at: http://www.suzannewoodsfisher.com.

 

Top 10 Tuesday — Autumn TBR List

24 Sep

The calendar may say it is Fall, but the temps here in the Sunny South say something much different. We are headed into a week with highs in the mid to high 90s yet again. Whew, I need some cooler weather! So while the rest of the country gets out the sweaters and the hot cider, I will just have to dig into some great Fall reading until our cool wave hits. Maybe in January! 😉

For more Fall Reading Lists, head over to That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

Fall TBR List

 

The Art of Rivers by Janet Ferguson

A Christmas Haven by Cindy Woodsmall and Erin Woodsmall

Christmas in Winter Hill by Melody Carlson

Darcy by Any Other Name by Laura Hile

Dark Ambitions by Irene Hannon

Judah’s Wife by Angela Hunt 

One Final Breath by Lynn H. Blackburn

Smoke Screen by Terri Blackstock

Stitches in Time by Suzanne Woods Fisher

Synapse by Steven James

 

What are you reading this Fall?

Reading Roadtrip — Massachusetts

11 Sep

I am heading back east this week with a Reading Roadtrip to Massachusetts. I got a chance to visit Boston a couple of years ago — it was wonderful — but missed the rest of the state. Sounds like a real road trip is in the making 😉 . But for now, I have to content myself with a virtual trip in books. And that is certainly okay, because I get to time travel as well! You will find my list is heavy on the historicals. How could it not be with such an historic place? So travel with me to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts the site of the Mayflower landing, of revolution and freedom, and now the most populace state in New England.

 

 

The Mayflower Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse (Daughters of The Mayflower, book 1)

Mary Elizabeth Chapman boards the Speedwell in 1620 as a Separatist seeking a better life in the New World. William Lytton embarks on the Mayflower as a carpenter looking for opportunities to succeed—and he may have found one when a man from the Virginia Company offers William a hefty sum to keep a stealth eye on company interests in the new colony. The season is far too late for good sailing and storms rage, but reaching land is no better as food is scarce and the people are weak. Will Mary Elizabeth survive to face the spring planting and unknown natives? Will William be branded a traitor and expelled?

Phoebe’s Light by Suzanne Woods Fisher (Nantucket Legacy, book 1)

Phoebe Starbuck has always adjusted her sails and rudder to the whims of her father. Now, for the first time, she’s doing what she wants to do: marrying Captain Phineas Foulger and sailing far away from Nantucket. As she leaves on her grand adventure, her father gives her two gifts, both of which Phoebe sees little need for. The first is an old sheepskin journal from Great Mary, her highly revered great-grandmother. The other is a “minder” on the whaling ship in the form of cooper Matthew Mitchell, a man whom she loathes.

Soon Phoebe discovers that life at sea is no easier than life on land. Lonely, seasick, and disillusioned, she turns the pages of Great Mary’s journal and finds herself drawn into the life of this noble woman. To Phoebe’s shock, her great-grandmother has left a secret behind that carries repercussions for everyone aboard the ship, especially her husband the captain and her shadow the cooper. This story within a story catapults Phoebe into seeing her life in an entirely new way — just in time.

The Patriot Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse (Daughters of The Mayflower, book 4)

Faith Jackson and Matthew Weber are both working covertly to aid the Patriot cause. But will they be willing to sacrifice all for their fledgling country?

Faith Jackson is a wealthy widow, friend of George Washington, and staunch supporter of the Patriot cause. Matthew Weber is friends with both Ben Franklin and his son William, who increasingly differ in their political views; and Matthew finds himself privy to information on both sides of the conflict. When a message needs to get to a spy among the Loyalists, Faith bravely steps up and in turn meets Matthew Weber. Suddenly she believes she could love again. But someone else has his eye on the Faith she portrays in elite social circles. What will Matthew and Faith have to sacrifice for the sake of their fledgling country?

The Rose of Winslow Street by Elizabeth Camden

In the small town of Colden, Massachusetts, Libby Sawyer leads a quiet, predictable life. Yet beneath the surface, she is haunted by a secret.

Newly arrived on American shores, Michael Dobrescu is far from predictable, and his arrival in Colden is anything but quiet. Michael’s shocking claim to be the rightful owner of Libby’s father’s house immediately alienates him from the appalled citizens of Colden.

Despite her own outrage, Libby is unwittingly fascinated by this enigmatic man who seems equally intrigued by her. As the court’s decision about the house looms and the layers of mystery surrounding Michael’s past are unveiled, Libby’s loyalties are tested in ways she never imagined.

Murder at The Flamingo by Rachel McMillan (A Van Buren And DeLuca Mystery)

Hamish DeLuca has spent most of his life trying to hide the anxiety that appears at the most inopportune times — including during his first real court case as a new lawyer. Determined to rise above his father’s expectations, Hamish runs away to Boston where his cousin, Luca Valari, is opening a fashionable nightclub in Scollay Square.  When he meets his cousin’s “right hand man,” Reggie, Hamish wonders if his dreams for a more normal life might be at hand. 

Regina “Reggie” Van Buren, heir to a New Haven fortune, has fled fine china, small talk, and the man her parents expect her to marry. Determined to make a life as the self-sufficient city girl she’s seen in her favorite Jean Arthur and Katharine Hepburn pictures, Reggie runs away to Boston, where she finds an easy secretarial job with the suave Luca Valari. But as she and Hamish work together in Luca’s glittering world, they discover a darker side to the smashing Flamingo nightclub.

When a corpse is discovered at the Flamingo, Reggie and Hamish quickly learn there is a vast chasm between the haves and the have-nots in 1937 Boston—and that there’s an underworld that feeds on them both. As Hamish is forced to choose between his conscience and loyalty to his beloved cousin, the unlikely sleuthing duo work to expose a murder before the darkness destroys everything they’ve worked to build. 

Through Waters Deep by Sarah Sundin (Waves of Freedom series, book 1)

It is 1941 and America teeters on the brink of war. Outgoing naval officer Ensign Jim Avery escorts British convoys across the North Atlantic in a brand-new destroyer, the USS Atwood. Back on shore, Boston Navy Yard secretary Mary Stirling does her work quietly and efficiently, happy to be out of the limelight. Yet, despite her reserved nature, she never could back down from a challenge. When evidence of sabotage on the Atwood is found, Jim and Mary must work together to uncover the culprit. A bewildering maze of suspects emerges, and Mary is dismayed to find that even someone close to her is under suspicion. With the increasing pressure, Jim and Mary find that many new challenges–and dangers–await them.

Sarah Sundin takes readers to the tense months before the US entered WWII. Readers will encounter German U-boats and torpedoes, along with the explosive power of true love, in this hopeful and romantic story.

As The Light Fades by Catherine West

Sometimes we’re placed in the strangest of circumstances for the most important reasons.

After her carefully constructed life crumbles, Liz Carlisle finds herself back on Nantucket, picking up the pieces. With the family estate under renovations, the solitude she craves seems out of reach.

Matthew Stone intends to steer clear of his new tenant. She’s carrying a load of baggage, but as long as she pays the rent, he’ll let her be. He’s got enough to deal with caring for his wayward niece, Mia.

Liz doesn’t have time for teenagers and her track record with men is abysmal, but an unlikely friendship forms between the three.

When her former boyfriend is charged with assault, Liz is called to testify against him. But he knows the darkest secrets of her life—secrets she’d hoped to keep buried forever, and he’s ready to reveal them. Telling the truth is the right thing to do, but it may cost her everything she’s worked so hard for, and all she’s come to love.

 

First Line Friday — Mending Fences

23 Aug

Happy Friday, everyone! Today I am featuring Mending Fences, book 1 in the The Deacon’s Family series, by Suzanne Woods Fisher. Fisher is one of my favorite authors and is tops with Amish fiction. This novel has been on my TBR shelf way too long, and I am determined to get it read soon. Have you read this book? Let me know why I need to move it up to the top of the pile! And while you’re at it, make sure to include the first line from the nearest book.

For more fabulous first line fun, head over to Hoarding Books.

 

Every saint has a past. Every sinner has a future.

Luke Schrock is a new and improved man after a stint in rehab, though everyone in Stoney Ridge only remembers the old Luke. They might have forgiven him, but nobody trusts him.

Amos and Fern Lapp allow Luke to live at Windmill Farm under two conditions. First, Luke must make a sincere apology to each person he’s hurt–a four-page, single-spaced list. Second, he must ask each victim of mischief to describe the damage he caused.

Simple, Luke thinks. Offering apologies is easy. But discovering the lasting effects his careless actions have caused . . . that isn’t so simple. It’s gut-wrenching.

And his list keeps growing. Izzy Miller, beautiful and frustratingly aloof, also boards at Windmill Farm. Luke’s clumsy efforts to befriend Izzy only insult and annoy her. Eager to impress, Luke sets out to prove himself to her by locating her mother. When he does, her identity sends shock waves through Stoney Ridge.

Bestselling and award-winning author Suzanne Woods Fisher returns to her beloved Stoney Ridge for this brand-new series featuring some of her readers’ favorite characters.

Suzanne Woods Fisher has a specialty: she writes about real people living in faith-based communities. With over 750,000 copies of books sold worldwide, she is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than twenty-five books, ranging from children’s books (The Adventures of Lily Lapp series) to novels (The Choice) to non-fiction books (Amish Peace: Simple Living for a Complicated World).

When Suzanne isn’t writing, she’s probably playing with puppies. She’s been involved with Guide Dogs for the Blind for over fifteen years. Raising puppies, she says, is like eating a potato chip. You just can’t stop at one.

Readers are invited to stop by Suzanne’s website at: http://www.suzannewoodsfisher.com