Kelly Irvin is an author whose work is relatively new to me. With Winter’s First Frost is the fourth book in the Every Amish Season Novels and I absolutely loved this book.
Laura Kauffman was one of my favorite characters, the kind of woman you would love to have as a mother or grandmother. I could relate to her physical aches and pains that come with getting older, understood the grief she felt even after being a widow for so many years and appreciated her willing, loving and helpful spirit to so many of her family and friends. I came to appreciate, understand and care about Zechariah Stutzman through Laura’s eyes. He wasn’t just a difficult cranky old man. He was funny and intelligent and a man who grieved the loss of his beloved wife. Because of Parkinson’s his body wasn’t cooperating with him and it made daily life difficult, so much so that this family tried to protect him and even seemed to treat him like a child. Was he just a burden to his family now or was he still useful? Dare these older people think about or ever hope to find love again so late in life?
A part of the story I found interesting was Laura’s two great-granddaughters, Tamara and Hannah. Both were facing critical decisions in their young lives that would impact their futures. Not to get off track, but I wondered how the Amish could biblically justify banning a member of their community when the person genuinely repented of their sin and sought forgiveness. I found the way that the older parents were treated somewhat bothersome. I appreciate that the Amish care for their elderly family members, but in this story, it seemed as if they were treated in a manner like you would a child, instead of respected intelligent adult.
Kelly is gifted writer and is able to weave a story and capture, in a very relatable way, what characters are thinking and feeling in their season of life. I could understand the memories, fears, sorrow, hopes and desires that these characters expressed. Kelly is very insightful in bringing these characters to life and they are very memorable, I found myself thinking about them even when I wasn’t reading the book. She paints a picture of the Amish community with her words that is beautiful, interesting and intriguing.
I’ve not read too many Amish themed books, but I love Kelly Irvin’s writing and I highly recommend With Winter’s First Frost. It’s a beautiful story with rich, loveable and relatable characters in a season of life that many of us may face.
I would like to thank BookLook and Zondervan for the opportunity to read With Winter’s First Frost by Kelly Irvin in exchange for an honest review. I was under no obligation to give a favorable review.