Sunday, June 16, 2013

Review: The Hope of Spring

I enjoyed this third section of a six-part serialization entitled "The Discovery, A Lancaster County Saga."  Each part is approximately 120 pages in length and is being released monthly, from February to July, 2013.  The story follows a newlywed Amish couple in Lancaster County whose relationship faces insurmountable odds.


Without Luke, Meredith is trying to piece her life back together, while in a hospital miles away, a young man is fighting for his life. . . .
The young man found beaten in a bus station is still unresponsive. A compassionate nurse prays for the man she calls “Eddie” and often quotes scriptures to him. Can her voice pull him out of the dark place he’s been in for so long?

After nearly losing the baby, Meredith Stoltzfus has never been so scared. Her parents are supportive, but they have younger children to care for. And while her rekindled friendship with Jonah Miller is a blessing, she aches for Luke and the love they shared. She needs Luke at her side, and her baby will need a father. Can Meredith manage to provide for herself and her baby—alone?

Spring is coming, but many places are still held in winter's grip.

My thoughts

The third part of The Discovery serial opens with Meredith at her parents' home after nearly losing the baby. The Hope of Spring moves slower and didn't grab my attention as much as the first two, but it still has the elements we have grown to expect from Wanda's writing: good storytelling, the realistic feel of the Amish lifestyle, characters you come to know and care about, relying on God's faithfulness and mercies, love and support within the Amish community.

Storylines were introduced with the Philadelphia nurse's grandparents and Meredith's sister, Laurie, who is staying with her. It will be interesting to see how Wanda develops these and ties everything together.

Nothing new really happens until the last page, which leaves us with much to anticipate in the next part, The Pieces of Summer.

I'm still enjoying the serial format and definitely recommend this book to those who enjoy inspirational fiction, especially Amish fiction.  Just realize that The Hope of Spring is part of a serialization and therefore fairly short.

Wanda Brunstetter

From Wanda's website . . .

I set The Discovery series in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania because my husband grew up near there, and we know the area quite well. I chose the theme for this series because during our early marriage, my husband and I were apart for two years while he was stationed in Germany. Since we didn’t have enough money for me to join him there, I remained at home with my parents during that very difficult time in our lives.

The main characters in this series, Luke and Meredith Stoltzfus, struggle financially. Worse yet, they must deal with grief and depression when they are separated by a horrible tragedy. Like Meredith and Luke, during my own time of separation from the man I love, I came to rely heavily on family, friends, and most of all, the Lord.

More information can be found on Wanda's website at and on her Facebook page at

This book was provided by Barbour Publishing through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

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