Image of ACCIDENTALLY AMISH (Valley of Choice)


Image of ACCIDENTALLY AMISH (Valley of Choice)

Heavy on fascinating historical and cultural detail but light on credible motivation, this novel features parallel stories set centuries apart, focusing primarily on the bland trials of a modern-day career woman who rather unbelievably ditches it all for Amish living. Unfortunately, the far more intriguing story — of an 18th-century Dutch woman who marries into one of Pennsylvania’s founding Amish families and confronts a life-long struggle for acceptance — is given short shrift. Newport can tell a tale of heart-rending emotional depth. Here’s hoping she revisits her real-life ancestor Elizabeth Byler’s story one day.

Fleeing a corporate conspiracy, millionaire software whiz Annalise Friesen takes refuge in a small Colorado town and meets Rufus Beiler, an Amish carpenter whose quiet faith calls to her restless soul. A few clicks of Annie’s mouse reveal that she and Rufus share a common colonial ancestor. Will Annalise’s growing fascination with Amish spirituality (and Rufus) recall the painful events of centuries past, or lay the foundation for a promising future? (BARBOUR, Oct., 368 pp., $14.99)
Reviewed by: 
Carolyn Martin