This is an exceptional series and one you do NOT want to miss!
September 16, 2014
I thought Seasons of Tomorrow would never get here! Cindy Woodsmall has such an amazing way of portraying her characters in the Amish Vines and Orchards series.
But it did and although I was in the midst of transferring to another job in another city I spent the next weekend reading the book and I didnt quit until I was done.
Did I say amazing? Yes, I did Cindy takes people, problems, and situations from the three previous books in the Amish Vines and Orchards series and neatly wraps it all up in Seasons of Tomorrow.
I dont know how she does it but she does.
I admit not everything turned out the way I expected, but thats ok. Life usually doesnt turn out the way I expect and Cindy writes about serious life challenges.
Rhoda Byler is one of my favorite characters ever written she has an unusual gift unfortunately, its one that continually gets her into trouble. She does whatever she can to help those around her, even going as far as denying her love with the one man she was meant to be with. But she never gives up!
This is an exceptional series and one you do NOT want to miss!
I received this book from Multnomah WaterBrook Press and am not being compensated for my review.
This is book 4 in the Amish Vines and Orchards series. Rhoda Byler's heart has been hurt and broken several times over the past few years by her friend and love, Jacob. Jacob is in and out of Rhoda's life and his involvement with other women causes her constant stress and heartache. In this book she has found a new purpose for life, and has decided to let what happens happen when it comes to her heart! She has chosen to seek God's guidance and wisdom for her future and the choices she must make as she works in the orchards. However, her friend is involved in a relationship with someone who is not Amish and this causes a rift in the community. Just as Rhoda is finding peace and happiness, her world is once again turned upside down.
Journey through the orchards of life with Rhoda. Trail alongside her as she finds her purpose and seeks God's will. Follow her choices as she chooses between Samuel and Jacob. Feel her emotions as she takes on challenge after challenge. Readers will love this final chapter of the Amish Vines and Orchard series.
The divine gift on intuition and insight that Rhoda Byler has been given to her by God, have many in the Amish community Orchard Bend, Maine questioning its validity. Most of the Old Order Amish believe that she is practicing witchcraft when the visions she has come true without any knowledge of just how she knows these things before they happen. Even Rhoda herself can't explain them, just that she does. Most of the times, she keeps these visions to herself because of the accusations being waged against her by her own people, most vocal by Samuel and Jacob King's father. They have moved from Pennsylvania to begin a new community and to establish Orchard Bend Farms, an apple orchard and canning business and have partnered with Rhoda Byler in part to her knowledge and experience in organic growing and tending the orchards. She was also in love with Jacob at one point believing they would be married.
But over time, secrets have caused a great divide between them. Jacob has a past that he has kept secret which involves another woman, Sandra and her daughter Casey and placed them all in legal hot water. When Rhoda herself wound up dealing with her own set of legal issues, instead of standing by her, Jacob left in an attempt to keep his secrets from hampering her investigation. Yet what they did was to cause Rhoda to gain support from Samuel, his brother, and over time, they both began to develop feelings for one another. Even though they tried to deny their feelings, eventually all three realized that the relationship between Jacob and Rhoda would never amount to what a marriage should be based on and Jacob called it off. Instead of resolving his bitterness against Samuel and Rhoda, Jacob moved away to give them all time to heal.
Now that the orchard is in full swing getting read for spring, an unforeseen tragedy will test everyone involved in unprecedented ways. Samuel's sister Leah is struggling with her own romantic feelings for Landon, an Englischer that was hired by Rhoda as her assistant to help build the business. Even though he understands the complications facing Leah by their love, he can't help but wonder if God has bigger plans in store for them. If they don't keep their feelings out of the public eye, Leah could face shunning by her community as well as bring down the orchard business for Rhoda and the King family if they get rid of Landon. They too could face shunning from their community for letting an Englischer causing one of their own to fall astray. But Leah is starting to come to an understanding of God's love through her faith by attending Landon's church and believes God might be calling her in a different direction. Once again if she walks away from her Amish faith, and leaves with Landon it will jeopardize more than just Orchard Bend Farms but isolate herself from her support system as well.
I received Seasons of Tomorrow by Cindy Woodsmall compliments Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers for my honest review and did not receive any monetary compensation for a favorable one. This is the fourth book in the Amish Vines and Orchards Series. I've loved this series from the first novel and have been wanting more of it with each additional novel that Cindy writes. The best part of this one, is the recap of the entire series up to this point at the beginning. It provides a brief look at what has been happening to all the major characters through the first three novels so you can jump right in. I love when authors do this, not so much because new readers might pick this one up without realizing there are more in the series and might be lost, but for those of us that patiently wait until the next novel comes out, the time that has passed makes us forget where we left off without having to go back and reread the previous books. The best part of this series for me, is the gift of foresight that Rhoda is given by God. It isn't something she can control or make happen when she needs it, but when it happens like a day dream, she has to make sense of what is happening by the clues she is given, like looking through a photo album and seeing pictures of her friends and then minutes later someone in those pictures is now missing. She isn't sure why that is, will they die, are they going to leave, or are they being removed for some other reason. Trust me, this series has been may favorite so far and can't wait for more. I easily give this one a 5 out of 5 stars.
Seasons of Tomorrow is the fourth book in the Amish Vines and Orchards series by Cindy Woodsmall. Each book needs to be read in order since it's one continuous story told in a four book format. I really liked the conclusion of the story, and actually, it's my favorite of the series. I was surprised how much I enjoyed this book since I didn't like the other three books. :-D
Rhoda Byler and Samuel King are still reeling over Jacob King's move from the orchard. Trying to run everything without his help has been taking a toll on all of them, but trouble keeps visiting the Kings. First, Samuel's dad shows up all upset with the rumors he's been hearing of Leah and Landon. The visit ends with Landon quitting and walking off without anyway to contact him leaving Leah confused and angry.
Without Jacob or Landon, Rhoda isn't sure how they will be able to keep Orchard Bend Farms in working order. As they struggle to make their new venture in Maine work, another tragedy strikes. Steven's wife, Phoebe, is ill and rushed to the hospital. Will Phoebe be ok? What will happen to Landon and Leah? And when will Rhoda and Samuel be able to marry without worrying about Jacob?
Like I said, this was a satisfying conclusion to the series. It tied up all the loose ends, made you happy and content with everyone's relationships, and made you wish for just a little bit more of the happy ending. :-) The only thing I wish it had was a longer epilogue! It felt kind of rushed to me, but it could have been because I wasn't ready to let go of the characters. I think the best part of the book to me was Jacob finally growing up! It was nice to finally see who he could be with the right person in his life.
I was given this book free from Waterbrook Multnomah in exchange for an honest review.
Seasons of Tomorrow is the last book in Cindy Woodsmall's current series Amish Vines and Orchards. The author has created a unique collection of characters that are not your standard Amish and yet because of that, they are so much more. Samuel and Rhoda finally find peace, Leah makes a life changing choice, and Jacob finds love in a place he would have never expected.
The story itself was wonderfully well crafted. We get conclusions to several inter plot that we have been waiting for. This book seemed to focus on the relationships and not so much to culture, which was okay because the author integrated so much of that into the first three books. I loved the idea that they were family as well as community even when they were separated. It is a great reminder that this is the way that God expects his children to be like.
The only thing that I didn't like, is that this book like so many other Amish book I have read in the last year, there is a huge medical crisis. This seems to be a trend that I'm having a hard time with, because it seems sometimes to be a plot filler.
It was really hard to say goodbye. I usually don't get so attached to characters but these really infiltrated my heart. And I have to say I appreciated the way that the author ended the book. In my opinion is was the best way.
If you are looking for a new Amish series that is not your typical Amish series then this is it. But start with book one, A Season for Tending.