A Christmas Gift for Rose [NOOK Book]

Overview

Rose turned her back on the man she loves after he assisted the Englisch during World War II—only to discover she’s an Englischer herself.


Born in the midst of the hardships of The Great Depression, Rose grew up in Berlin, Ohio, in the arms of a loving Amish family. But she is overwhelmed by self-doubt when she learns that she was born Englisch and abandoned when her family ...

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A Christmas Gift for Rose

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Overview

Rose turned her back on the man she loves after he assisted the Englisch during World War II—only to discover she’s an Englischer herself.


Born in the midst of the hardships of The Great Depression, Rose grew up in Berlin, Ohio, in the arms of a loving Amish family. But she is overwhelmed by self-doubt when she learns that she was born Englisch and abandoned when her family moved West in search of work.


Was she meant to be Amish or would she have been better off growing up with her own kind—Englischers? When the man she loves leaves her behind, Rose is certain he left for good. Yet Rose discovers sometimes our greatest gifts are the ones we fear.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780310336822
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Publication date: 9/24/2013
  • Sold by: Zondervan Publishing
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 119,974
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

USA Today bestselling author Tricia Goyer is the author of more than 40 books, including the novelization for Moms’ Night Out. She has written over 500 articles for national publications and blogs for high traffic sites like TheBetterMom.com and MomLifeToday.com. Tricia and her husband, John, live in Little Rock, Arkansas, where Tricia coordinates a Teen MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group. They have six children.

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Read an Excerpt

A Christmas Gift for Rose


By Tricia Goyer

ZONDERVAN

Copyright © 2013 Tricia Goyer
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-310-33678-5


CHAPTER 1

November 1945

ROSE Yoder had hoped the last rays of evening light would fight harder against the building storm clouds, but the sky was dark as she stepped from the shelter of the barn doors with milk bucket in hand. A gentle breeze stirred particles of dust and chaff. Somewhere in the distance an automobile's motor could be heard, chugging down the gravel road beyond the farm. Golden light glowed from the lantern hanging in the kitchen window, marking her way over the frozen snow, but the light didn't penetrate far enough. She struggled forward, leaving earthy smells behind her, trusting her heart to find the way to the front door when her steps weren't sure.

Was there certainty anywhere these days? No, especially not deep in Rose's heart.

Jonathan and I should be married by now ... maybe with a boppli on the way.

She pushed that thought from her mind and shook her head, her breath freezing in the air. That wouldn't happen now. Not after what he d done. Joining the military. Traveling overseas. And to think he'd had the nerve to return to their small Amish community and don his Amish garb like nothing had happened—like he hadn't shamed their community, shamed her.

"I'll be back in Berlin before Christmas, Rose. Let's not wait until next harvest to get married." His last letter had contained those words. But tomorrow was Thanksgiving Day, and he'd already been here a week. Maybe to say good-bye to his family once and for all before leaving for good. And after their last conversation, she didn't imagine she'd get a goodbye when he did.

Rose's lower lip trembled. She doubted he'd even come see her. Why would he? She'd stated plainly that things were over between them. After all, how could she give her heart fully to someone who promised her a good Amish life and then turned to the world? The Second World War had taken so much from their country—from their community. But Rose's soul felt as if it was a personal attack on her. On her dreams. On her future.

During the war, their town had changed the pronunciation of its name. Burr-lin, the locals practiced saying. And she'd done her own practicing: "I don't love you, Jonathan. Not now. Not ever." If only her feelings agreed with her words.

A cold wind stirred her kapp strings. Rose quickened her steps, careful not to slosh any of the steaming milk from the bucket. Mem needed every drop for the shoofly pie, Rose's favorite. Tomorrow was their Thanksgiving meal and all of the family would be gathered. So why did it feel as if the bucket weighed a hundred pounds?

The darkness pressed in, and she sucked in a cold breath. Her foot slipped slightly on the layer of ice under the snow. She adjusted her gait, saving herself from a tumble. The farm was buried under a layer of snow. Even the birdhouse, set on a high pole, was covered with a thin layer, its emptiness magnifying her ache.

Something else nagged at her, an unknown angst that twisted her gut. The same anxiety visited her every year at this time, but like a morning shadow it never fully revealed itself. There was something she needed to do, wasn't there? Something she needed to remember ... But for the life of her she couldn't think what.

A cold wind nipped at her nose, and with her free hand Rose tucked her scarf tight under her chin. She slowly walked up the wooden porch steps, telling herself she wouldn't let the stones in the pit of her stomach keep her from enjoying her family—her dat, mem, and the younger siblings still at home. If she had nothing else, they were enough. It was a good Amish life, one she wouldn't trade for anything.

Rose opened the door and stepped through. A wall of warmth and the scent of fresh bread and lentil soup greeted her. Those smells mixed with Mem's baking, the fragrance of dried apples and pies, and the wet clothes drying on a line strung up behind the woodstove.

Two steps in, someone rose from the wooden rocking chair near the fire and turned. Her brother's round face, dark brown eyes, and new beard greeted her.

"Marcus!" A smile filled her face. After she'd met Jonathan three years ago, and with their care for each other growing so quickly, Rose had thought she'd marry before Marcus. But the war—Jonathan's choice—changed that. Marcus had taken her spot, marrying Katie just last month. It was good to have him visit. Rose had missed him. And tomorrow her sister Vera—older by less than a year—would arrive with her husband and son.

Her older brother reached down and took the heavy milk bucket from her hand. "Rose, I could have done that. I would have liked to greet ole Bess yet."

She smiled at the release of her burden. "Oh, you're jest trying to tickle me happy so I'll make you an apple cake."

"I haven't had one in months. It wouldn't hurt yer bruder to try now, would it?" Tenderness filled his gaze. Even though Rose had seven other siblings, two-years-older Marcus had always been her favorite. He watched out for her. He treated her as if she needed caring for. She'd never minded.

"I cut boughs for you from my property." He pointed to a burlap sack near the door with fresh greenery spilling out. The scent of pine widened her smile. "I know how you love to decorate the windowsills, much to Dat's dismay," he added.

Rose nodded, but knew she'd see a glimmer of appreciation in Dat's gaze once she'd finished decorating. As an Amish preacher, he lived up to the standard of the Plain lifestyle, but for some reason he had grace with Rose's desire for simple touches of beauty around their home.

"Thank you. Now where's that bride?" Rose glanced around, noting his wife, Katie, in the kitchen with Mem. A dozen pie shells lined the countertop in two rows, waiting to be filled. Katie tucked a spoon under the lid of a jar of cherries and pressed upward, breaking the seal.

"It looks like you're making a dozen more pies yet?" Rose took off her coat and scarf and hung it by the back door. "Need help?" She washed her hands in a basin of cool water.

"You can roll out those crusts." Mem's fists kneaded a mass of bread dough. "Or start on those dishes. But change your apron, Rose, please. You jest came from the barn."

Rose glanced down at her blue dress and apron—the exact style and color as her mem and sisters.

Laughter rose from her cluster of brothers and sisters in the living room as they played jacks. Elizabeth, who was in her last year of schooling, sat watching them as she spun wool. Only five-year-old Louisa stayed in the kitchen to watch.

Rose turned to her youngest sister, whose hair was as dark as the sky outside. "Louisa, would you be a dear and grab a clean apron for me? It's in the trunk."

"Ja!" At five, Louisa loved helping out. It made her feel older when she could be a part of the bustle and not treated like a baby, even though she was the youngest.

Mem removed an apple pie from the woodstove and placed it on the cooling rack.

"I made extra pies to share with our neighbors." She tucked a strand of gray hair back into her kapp, leaving a spot of flour at her temple. "I was wondering, Rose, if tomorrow you could take two pies over to Mr. and Mrs. Ault, before everyone arrives for our afternoon celebration."

Rose dipped two fingers into a jar of cherries, pulled one out, and popped it in her mouth. "Ja. Of course."

Katie pinched the edges of a pie crust with her fingers. "But aren't they having company—a big gathering of their own? I expected aunts, uncles, cousins to come around ... with Harold being home and all."

Harold? Had Rose heard right? She placed a hand over her quickened heart. "He's home?"

How many times had her family prayed for their neighbor's safe return? He'd been fighting on some island in the South Pacific and had been injured. For the first few months she'd asked Mrs. Ault about news of her only son every time she saw her. But when no word came Rose held in her concern. The unknowing—the fears—had been evident in Mrs. Ault's eyes.

Rose glanced out the window in the direction of their neighbors' farmhouse. She could barely see the glow of their electric light on the front porch. Surely if things were gut Harold would have stopped by. What type of injury did he have? Had he lost an arm or a leg like a few other soldiers from their town?

She swallowed hard, thinking once again of Jonathan, of all he had seen as a medic. More than he'd expected to, she supposed. How could she ever truly trust her heart to someone like that, after all he'd done—all he'd seen? He'd left their community behind. He'd lived among the Englisch. He'd received military training. He'd worn a uniform, confirming who his allegiance was to. To be Amish meant to be a member of a community of fellow followers of God. Jonathan had walked away from that community and aligned himself to the military. Turning his back on her in the process.

How could Jonathan return and commit himself to being fully Amish after that? And how could she commit her heart to someone who'd made such a choice?

Rose removed her soiled apron. Many thought that the Second World War hadn't had much impact on the Amish of Ohio, but they couldn't be more wrong.

"Harold is home." Mem's words were flat. "I stopped by the Aults' house a few days ago. I had extra eggs ..." Her words trailed off.

What was Mem not telling them?

Rose glanced around at her younger siblings. They'd stilled their play to listen, but she knew Mem wouldn't reveal whatever sad news her gaze hinted at. Mem rarely spoke of things that pained her heart. Dat said it was because her tears—which came too easily—embarrassed her.

Rose's stomach knotted as she considered going over there. "I'm sure it's gut to have him home, whatever the condition." She tried to sound convincing. Would seeing her childhood friend break her heart?

Did Jonathan know Harold was back? Since he'd just arrived back in town, Rose doubted it. Still, she imagined Jonathan's concerned gaze. He wouldn't be fearful of what he'd see. He'd seen it all, hadn't he? Not that she'd ask him.

Rose couldn't get Jonathan off her mind. He'd captured a large slice of her thoughts since that first evening three years ago when he'd stared at her over the fire pit at the Yoders' place during a Singing. Distance had not lessened her care.

When he'd gone overseas, Jonathan had written and told her he worked at the hospitals away from the front lines. Rose should have been thankful, but as a pacifist he should have had no part in supporting the war—not even in the hospitals. If Jonathan had been drafted, that would have been one thing, but he'd volunteered. And while other young Amish men waited out the war on the home front, growing gardens in the small county prisons or working for the Conservation Corps, Jonathan had left their Amish community and traveled to a distant country with armed soldiers. He'd trained in their camps and made friends with outsiders. The shame! And she was the one left to see the disapproval in the gazes of her fellow Amish. To hear the women's comments around the sewing circle. She was the one who'd received a visit from a very unhappy bishop upon the discovery of what Jonathan had done and where he'd gone.

"Pretty soon he's going to stop being Amish. Most likely he's already made that choice," the bishop had commented after it was discovered that Jonathan was in France. His disapproval had been clear. Though they were friendly with their Englisch neighbors, there was a dividing line. Though invisible, the barrier was all Rose had been raised to know. There was "them" and "us." Rose knew there was no middle ground.

Being among the Englisch had no doubt changed Jonathan. Supporting the war most likely did too. In all their months apart her feelings for him had never waned, yet how could she continue loving someone who had chosen to follow the world's way?

Rose stepped forward and ladled water from the warming reservoir on the stove, preparing to set to work on the endless pile of dishes. Steam rose and fog condensed on the window above the kitchen sink. The glass reflected Louisa's approach.

"I found this apron in Mem's trunk, Rose. It even has your name on it!"

Rose flicked the water from her fingers and turned.

Mem's wooden spoon clattered to the floor. "No!" The word burst from her lips. Faster than Rose had ever seen her move, she snatched the flour-sack apron from Louisa's hand, gripping it with taloned fingers.

Katie chuckled. "It appears someone found your Christmas present—a fancy Englisch apron nonetheless. Only you would be given such a pretty gift."

A present? Rose looked at Louisa's wide-eyed shock and trembling lower lip, then turned to Mem's face. What she saw had her stepping back, pressing herself against the counter behind her. Wetness seeped through her dress at the small of her back, but she gave it no mind. A dozen questions fought for answers, but only two reigned.

Why did Mem have a look of sheer terror in her gaze as she clutched that Englisch apron tightly to her chest?

And what is my name doing on it?

CHAPTER 2

The lumber wagon creaked and groaned. Jonathan Fisher held the reins with his right hand and blew warm breath into his left mitten. Winter had taken hold. A black cape of ice-rimmed darkness draped over the countryside, reminding him of the frozen Belgian woods. Had it really only been a year ago he'd tramped through the waist-high snow as they set up their field hospital during the Battle of the Bulge?

It seemed a lifetime had passed since he'd been in those foreign woods. Jonathan closed his eyes, but he couldn't block out the memory of fresh red blood dripping onto the white snow. Ambulance drivers had carried litters filled with injured soldiers to overcrowded tents that echoed with moans. He'd done his best. He'd offered prayers along with his skill, but it was not enough for some. Never enough.

His stomach tightened, but not only from the cold. Up ahead was the Yoder farm. Before the war, on his lumber runs, he'd driven by the farm with excitement, hoping to get a glimpse of Rose—his bride to be. And now? Now he feared she'd be outside, finishing up chores when he passed.

Why did I come this way again? Am I trying to punish myself?

It was hard enough that she'd told him she had no desire to marry him. Worse was knowing she turned away, ignoring his presence, when he was close. Jonathan had even attended church in the neighboring community of Charm for that very reason. His heart split in two at the disdain in her gaze, the turn of her back.

He stared ahead as he passed the house, refusing to look through the windows hoping to catch a glimpse of her. Then, in the dark night, something caught his eye to the right of the road. A shape. A huddled form. Then movement of digging.

Was that a person?

"Whoa." Jonathan pulled back on the reins and jumped down from the lumber wagon. He took a step forward. Even in the dim light he could see it was a man, lying down, propped up on his elbows and peering over a snow drift. Jonathan looked down the road in the direction of the Ault place. What was the man looking at? He hadn't moved and didn't seem concerned about the approach of the wagon and horse.

Jonathan hurried forward. The man was ill prepared for this weather, dressed in only pajama pants and a thin cotton shirt. "Hullo?" What else could he say? Was this man mad?

The man looked back. His short cropped hair stuck up from a sweaty brow. Even in the dimness, the whites of his eyes glowed, widening in horror. The man didn't speak, but motioned for Jonathan to get down. Jonathan instinctively hunkered over. He again glanced down the snow-covered road. Was something out there?

Only silence met his ears, and he saw nothing but the ruts in the snow where another wagon or buggy had passed earlier in the day.

"What is it?" Jonathan slipped to the man's side, kneeling in the snow. "Are you okay?"

"The Japs ..." The man's words came out as a hiss. "They'll see you." He lowered his gaze. "The Japs killed them ... killed them all. I was the only one to escape."

Pain pounded in Jonathan's heart. A lump grew in his throat. Though he tried, he couldn't swallow it away. He reached his hand to the man's shoulder, but knew better and pulled it back. Instead he studied the man's terror-filled face. It was only then Jonathan recognized Harold. Even though the man was a few years older—and had gone to the Englisch school—Jonathan had seen him around town. Yet with his pale face and wrinkled brow the man looked twenty years older. Rose had said Harold had gone to the South Pacific. She'd been worried. So many in the town had sent up a million prayers, cried a million tears, over their sons.
(Continues...)


Excerpted from A Christmas Gift for Rose by Tricia Goyer. Copyright © 2013 Tricia Goyer. Excerpted by permission of ZONDERVAN.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 23 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 23 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 7, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Rose was certain that when her intended left to join the militar

    Rose was certain that when her intended left to join the military he would not return.  She had assumed he had left not only her but the Amish community.  She just knew he had turned away from the Amish beliefs. When he did return she did not want to see him because he had done the unforgivable by choosing to live among the Englisch.

    When she uncovers a secret about her past she fears her own place in the Amish community may b e under scrutiny.

    The cover image drew me in and once I opened the book I did not want to put it down.  The author held my attention with the suspense and heartache of so many that surrounded Rose.  The love of her family was far stronger that she gave them credit.  Her beau loved her deeply and was so patient with her many doubts and fears of her future. Loved the book from beginning to end.

    I highly recommend this book.

    I rated this book a 5 out of 5.

    Disclosure:  I received a free copy of this book from Zondervan/Lifuse Publicity Group for review.  I was in no way compensated for this review.  This is review is my honest opinion.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 3, 2014

    Well, Tricia Goyer has done it again with another wonderful Amis

    Well, Tricia Goyer has done it again with another wonderful Amish story just in time for the holidays. There is never a dull moment in this book, and I was pleased to read about the real life inspiration behind this story. This is full of emotion, love, and of course, the strength of the Amish people. Tricia is a master at painting these people flawlessly without any kind of judgment nor criticism.

    My favorite thing about Tricia is the way she seamlessly incorporates the Christian faith into each of her books. She never preaches, but she shows faith in action. While the story is somewhat predictable, it is a good kind of predictability. If you like Amish books, I call this one a must-read in anticipation of the upcoming holiday season.

    I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not financially compensated, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 5, 2013

    A Christmas Gift for Rose is a wonderfully engaging story that s

    A Christmas Gift for Rose is a wonderfully engaging story that spans the Depression years into the time of
    WWII.  These Englisch events have a great impact on the Amish community and Rose is caught in the middle.
    Rose’s Amish fiancée has enlisted to serve as a Medic and that causes a scandal among the Amish.  
    Rose is more concerned what other people think than what God is asking.  And then Rose has a crisis
    of her own to work through. Can her faith, her Amish faith, sustain her when her entire world is crumbling
    around her?   A Christmas Gift for Rose is a journey of great faith and greater love and one that will warm
    your heart and soul!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2013

    This was a wonderful quick read, and my first experience

    This was a wonderful quick read, and my first experience with Miss Goyer. I have recently become a fan of novels depicting Amish life, and it was interesting to me, reading a book that was not set in present day, yet noting the similarities in the way that the Amish people still live their lives. This story held a lot of emotions, love, and forgiveness, making it an ideal read for the Christmas season.
    I was particularly affected by the struggle that Rose endured between listening to her heart and taking to heart the thoughts of people outside of her relationship. I thought that Miss Goyer handled the situation beautifully by having Rose give the outside voices power in her life- like most people have done- and then showing her through a twist in the plot, that there are more important things than the opinions of others.
    My only critique of this book is that I wish that it could have been a little longer. I felt like as soon as I developed a kinship with Rose, the book was almost over. I recommend this book to anyone looking for a good, clean story that will take them to a simple time where the only things that mattered were faith, love, and family.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2013

    This book will ignite your passion for reading Amish historical

    This book will ignite your passion for reading Amish historical fiction! Such a precious story of love and knowing Whose you are!
    My favorite character was Marcus. A brief background about him. He is the older brother of the main character, Rose. He has only her best interests in mind, but is also caring, gentle and loving. He gives his sister just what she seems to need when she needs it. I won't go as far as to say the 'perfect' big brother, but he's definitely a strong constant in her life.
    My favorite part was when another character, Harold, was having flashbacks from the war and Jonathan, Rose's love interest, talks him down with such a compassionate way about him. He never makes excuses for Harold but simply gets him through a tough time. Writing like that in which the reader can visualize the experience is truly a gift and Tricia has been blessed with it!
    If you're looking for an easy read (not too long, not too short!) during the holiday breaks coming up, this book is a great place to start. And I think once you read one of Tricia's books, you'll want to read more!
    Lyn Parker

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  • Posted October 29, 2013

    Tricia Goyer has written the sweetest Christmas story I have had

    Tricia Goyer has written the sweetest Christmas story I have had the pleasure to read!    I love the parallels she draws to Heidi, as Rose volunteers at the local Amish school once a week and reads a chapter to the class.  I won't spoil it though and tell you how it relates to Rose's special story.   I have always thought of adoption as the most precious way to tell I child:  "We CHOSE you for our family!"  Rose is having a hard time understanding how her Englisch family could have abandoned her to her Amish family when she was very small.   She is filled with doubts about her own identity.    
               Added to this, the love of her life, Johnathon has returned from working as a medic in WWII, and she feels that he has abandoned her and their Amish faith too.   Her Englisch neighbor, Harold, fought in the war and has Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder which was referred to as "shell shock" at that time.  Can Rose, Johnathon, Harold, and Rose's family help each other discover again the true meaning of family and Christmas?   This is certainly a five-star book.    
           I received a kindle version of this book from booksneeze in exchange for my honest review.
    About the Author:

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  • Posted October 20, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Hang on to your emotions! Rose should be married to Jonathan by

    Hang on to your emotions!

    Rose should be married to Jonathan by now but when he enlisted in the military she broke the engagement off. Jonathan has returned and she's doing her best to avoid him but then she finds out that she isn't truly Amish so will she be accepted in the community any more than he is. Jonathan was a medic, he didn't even carry a weapon, she's an Englischer raised Amish, will things ever be right in her life again?




    This is a very touching story and you need to have some tissues ready, especially at the end.Tricia did a wonderful job of messing with your feelings for such a short book, mine were totally captured with this story.

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  • Posted October 20, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    The story actually begins during the Great Depression of 1929 an

    The story actually begins during the Great Depression of 1929 and entails the hardships on families. Some didn't have enough to eat. Some did. There was illness exacerbated by lack of proper nutrition. There was death and fear of death. This was the childhood of Rose and the beginning of her story.

    The book opens when Rose is around 20 and is happily living in an Amish household as a devoted Amish Community member. She loves a young Amish young man, Jonathan, who veered away from the normal Amish non-violent, peaceful approach to war by enlisting in the military as a medic during WWII. The war is over and he is back in the Amish Community trying to again be a respected member. Rose and Jonathan love each other but must overcome questions and doubts.

    This charming novella explores the hearts of those who adopt and who are adopted. It explores the wonderful value on many levels that adoption provides. But mostly, this little book leaves the reader with the feeling of joy and fulfillment. It is a story of hearts-ease.

    If you enjoy Amish reads, this little Christmas novella is sure to please you. If you're not particularly a fan of Amish novels, you will most likely enjoy this because of the story of sacrificial love that is told.

    Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of A Christmas Gift for Rose to in exchange for my review. Opinions expressed are solely my own. I was not required to render a positive review. I received no compensation for this review.

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  • Posted October 20, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Tricia Goyer in her new book, ¿A Christmas Gift For Rose¿ publis

    Tricia Goyer in her new book, “A Christmas Gift For Rose” published by Zondervan takes us into the life of Rose Yoder.




    From the back cover:  Rose turned her back on the man she loves after he assisted the Englisch during World War II—only to discover she’s an Englischer herself.




    Born in the midst of the hardships of The Great Depression, Rose grew up in Berlin, Ohio, in the arms of a loving Amish family. But she is overwhelmed by self-doubt when she learns that she was born Englisch and abandoned when her family moved West in search of work.




    Was she meant to be Amish or would she have been better off growing up with her own kind—Englischers? When the man she loves leaves her behind, Rose is certain he left for good. Yet Rose discovers sometimes our greatest gifts are the ones we fear.




    Tricia Goyer has an attention to details that help draw you into the story as well, of course, as her marvelous characters. World War II and the repercussions of being in the war and being a pacifist and against it.  This is the climate that Rose finds herself in when the war is over and Jonathan comes home.  This is a story of the real meaning of Christmas and finding yourself and accepting others.  Both Rose and Jonathan are presented in such a real manner that you feel as though they are friends of yours and when the book eventually ends you are sorry to see them go.  “A Christmas Gift For Rose” is an exciting book with the romance taking top priority as each of them deals with their individual issues.  Ms. Goyer has done it again.  I liked this book a lot.




    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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  • Posted October 17, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Inspired by a true story, A Christmas Gift for Rose is a heartwa

    Inspired by a true story, A Christmas Gift for Rose is a heartwarming novella of sacrifice and deep love. This is Tricia Goyer's very first Christmas novella - and while novellas tend to be light, easy reads, this goes a lot deeper than normal with its characterization and plot. This is a very enjoyable and moving read.

    I was expecting a light, heartwarming Christmas read, but found so much more. Tricia writes in an easily flowing style as she explores themes of Amish pacifism and a family's struggle during the Depression years.

    The story opens in November of 1945, with Rose having broken off her relationship with Jonathan over his decision to serve as an Army medic. For in Rose's mind, as well as many in their community, "to join the military was to turn one's back on being Amish." And to further complicate matters, Rose discovers she had not been born into the Amish family that she grew up in and loved.

    According to Amish teaching, Jonathan should have had no part in supporting the war, yet he could not wait at home and do nothing. Reflecting on the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jonathan asks, "Should we place our religion above the care of others?"

    I can understand how parents who had lost a son in the war would resent an Amish man sitting in jail or growing crops rather than serving his country. But on the other hand, some Amish men, like Jonathan, found a way to serve without having to fire a weapon. For the Amish to criticize Jonathan seems awfully legalistic. I was also frustrated with Rose at first because she let people's negative opinions influence her attitudes and actions, but then I realized how difficult it is for any of us to withstand negativity.

    Rose's neighbor, Harold, was a sympathetic character who I loved. Harold returned from the war with what would be diagnosed as post-traumatic stress syndrome today, and both Jonathan and Rose reached out to him with sensitivity. I wish we could follow Harold's story beyond the pages of this story.

    Tricia brought in an Amish Thanksgiving ritual that I thought was very meaningful - the morning being a time of fasting and reflection before the family celebration begins. I would like to personally draw from this in some way.

    With spiritual themes beautifully woven throughout, A Christmas Gift for Rose comes to a heartwarming and emotional conclusion on Christmas Day. This story would make great reading during the Thanksgiving/Christmas season, or at any time of the year.

    This book was provided by Litfuse Publicity Group and Zondervan in exchange for my honest review.

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  • Posted October 6, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Rose Yoder is as Amish as anyone could ever be and she dreamed o

    Rose Yoder is as Amish as anyone could ever be and she dreamed of an Amish wedding to Jonathan Fisher. That is until Jonathan decided to join the ranks of World War II. All Rose can see is that Jonathan had turned his back on her and everything they stand for. The Amish are not fighters and she feels Jonathan was wrong in his decision. Rose's world is thrown off balance by what she sees as Jonathan's betrayal and, on top of a broken heart, she finds out her life isn't quite what it seems. Rose finally finds out the reason for her constant nightmares... She was adopted by the Yoders but, worse yet, she's not Amish. Can Jonathan and her family make her see that no matter who her parents were she is as much a part of the Yoder family as if she had been born into it?

    Jonathan Fisher has loved Rose for years but he feels he can be more help on the battlefield administering medical aid to the soldiers than sitting in prison for his refusal to join. The one person that he hoped would understand has turned her back on him, he is on the verge of being ostracized by his community and is beginning to think he would be better off in the Englisch world. His love for Rose is what keeps him rooted in their community but Rose is pushing Jonathan away and it has nothing to do with him leaving and everything to do with the secret of her past. Can Jonathan help Rose forget the past and move into the future at his side? Will his Christmas gift help her to come to terms with past?

    I have to say I truly adore Amish fiction and a Christmas Gift for Rose did not disappoint me. I could plainly feel the war going on in Rose's heart and mind. She was Amish but, yet, she wasn't. It was an emotional tug of war but I loved the fact that she didn't have to face it alone. Her entire family stood by her and Jonathan's support was heartwarming. Even though Jonathan was dealing with his own deamons he fought for Rose and gave her the greatest gift she could have ever hoped for. The characters were absolutely loveable and the storyline was definitely different than any I have read before. I thoroughly enjoyed delving into their lives, sharing the hurt and the happiness. Tricia Goyer is a new author to me and one I will be adding to my "Favorite's" list.

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  • Posted October 2, 2013

    The story of Rose and her life changed by God's plan. His divin

    The story of Rose and her life changed by God's plan. His divine plan sometimes is not revealed until He is ready to unveil it.
    Rose raised as Amish didn't remember being English. She is afraid to marry the love of her life. Her own life is full of dreams of her past she cannot figure out. And Jonathan went off to be in military - which Amish didn't do.
    God brings two families together; an Amish and an English. Yet all of it is God's plan.
    Jonathan could night in war because Amish did not believe in it. Yet he enlisted and worked in hospital. any Amish could not accept his. It put a wedge between him and Rose.
    Be sure to have Kleenx's handy at times.
    Romance, hardships, hard decisions, sacrifices and so much love. God's love is over all in every part of this story.

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  • Posted October 2, 2013

    Tricia continues to bring us wonderful books to read! I am reall

    Tricia continues to bring us wonderful books to read! I am really enjoying these Amish books by Christian authors! Thank you for sharing your talents and passions with all your readers!




    In A Christmas Gift for Rose we follow Rose Yoder as she struggles with the fact that the man she loves leave to help the Englisch in World War II and turns her back on him, being encouraged by their Bishop and the community they grew up in...only to find out that she, herself, was born into an Englisch family! We find out how she came to be with the Yoder family and what most likely led up to her biological parents leaving her behind! This great story is inspired by true events. One of the great lessons in this book is that of discovering your own true identity! Rose struggles with this as she tries to choose what to do now that she knows she is Englisch, she recognizes the similarities between her and the main character in the book Heidi, which she reads to the children at the local school...but will she stay or will she go? What about the man she loves?




    That pretty well sums it up...to get the answers to these questions, read the book and let me know what you think! Yep, short and sweet, just like the book!  Some of my thoughts: One of the wonderful things I found in this story is how sometimes we might make choices that are not popular in our group of family and friends, but, in the end, the lessons learned end up helping us and others! Also, I'm not quite sure how I feel about the Amish view on their serving in the military. I mean, I understand their thoughts, but I also understand the views of those not part of the Amish, too! See question below to share your thoughts...




    One of many quotes I'd like to share: "...it was time to let the future matter more than the past." (pg 121)




    I would like to pose one of the included discussions to you: "During World War II most Amishmen chose to join the Conservation Corp or spend their time in jail or working on farms. How did the war impact these men and those in their community?"




    Disclosure: As part of the Tricia Goyer 2013 Fiction Launch Team, I did receive a free copy of this book; however I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed here are completely my own!

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  • Posted October 1, 2013

    Tricia Goyer is the author of a new title called " A Rose

    Tricia Goyer is the author of a new title called " A Rose for Christmas." If you know me, I love everything Christmas and anything to do with books. You might be thinking it's to early to be thinking about Christmas, but less than a month from now, we will be in full blown holiday mode.

    Back to the book..

    A Rose for Christmas is about this Amish girl named Rose who loved a man named Jonathan. Jonathan decided to go into the service as a medic. Rose loved him, but did not approve of his choice and she decided he was no longer the man of he dreams. Jonathan loved Rose and wrote him while he was away. This did not persuade Rose. Jonathan returned home shortly before Thanksgiving. As Rose and her mother begin to prepare for the Thanksgiving festivities, Rose learns that years ago when she was four, her family abandoned her and the family she lives with now, took her in. Rose is in complete shock by this news and feels completely alone. She discovers her real family was English.

    A Christmas Gift for Rose

    Now, I can't give a lot more of the story away, but the questions becomes does Rose truly discover the secret behind her real family? Are her and Jonathan destined to be together or he her brother? Better read the book to find out.

    You can read this book in two hours. It's a small and quick read! Do I recommend it for the holidays? Totally!!

    Thank you Zondervan books for allowing me to review this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

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  • Posted September 30, 2013

    Rose Yoder's heart is broken when the man she loves chooses to j

    Rose Yoder's heart is broken when the man she loves chooses to join the Englisch during World War II instead of remaining in her Amish community. When he returns, Rose isn't sure she can ever trust her heart to him again.

    Jonathan Fisher has evidenced many atrocities as a medic during the war and still carries the haunts from what he has witnessed. His sole desire upon returning is to woo back the woman he loves. Will she ever forgive him for the choice he made in leaving her?

    Christmas novels are one of my favorite things to read as I ready my heart for celebrating the birth of my Savior. Tricia weaves a sweet tale of hope and faith in her new book. It is sure to touch the hearts of readers.

    I had the distinct pleasure of hosting Tricia for a speaking event at my church when she was on her research trip to my area of the country, which eventually resulted in this book. What a sweet honor to have the privilege of reading this tale.

    This book was provided free for review by Zondervan.

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  • Posted September 26, 2013

    A heartwarming novella based on a true story. This was a quick

    A heartwarming novella based on a true story. This was a quick easy read and left you warmed by the love that saturates the story—the love of an adopted family; the love of a biological family; the love of a young couple; and the love of our Heavenly Father.
    Nightmares plagued Rose for years. Now, when faced with the truth of why these dreams haunt her, she has to come to terms with who she really is. Rose wondered, could she be Amish, although she was born Englisch?
    All the while, Jonathan struggles within himself after returning from WWII as an army medic. After all, his decision to enlist was not the Amish way. Would his community accept him even though he had lived among the Englischers?
    “It jest seems like a good idea to come to peace with your past before you plan your future, does it not?”(A Christmas Gift for Rose, page 100) Can their personal struggles be overcome so that they can share their love?
    I highly recommend this book as a beautiful way to welcome the celebration of Christmas and the gift we were so freely given through the birth of our Savior. Throughout this story you will learn of sacrifice, immeasurable love, and discovering who you are because of Christ’s love for you.
    As a member of Tricia Goyer’s Fiction Launch Team, I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation has been given.

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  • Posted September 25, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    "Rose couldn't get Jonathan off her mind. He'd captured a l

    "Rose couldn't get Jonathan off her mind. He'd captured a large slice of her thoughts since that first evening three years ago when he'd stared at her over the fire pit at the Yoder's place during a Singing. Distance had not lessened her care.

    When he'd gone overseas, Jonathan had written and told her he worked at the hospitals away from the front lines. Rose should have been thankful, but as a pacifist he should have had no part in supporting the war - not even in the hospitals. If Jonathan had been drafted, that would have been one thing, but he'd volunteered. And while other young Amish men waited out the war on the home front, growing gardens in the small county prisons or working for the Conservation Corps, Jonathan had left their Amish community and traveled to a distant county with armed soldiers. He'd trained in their camps and made friends with outsiders. The shame! And she was the one left to see the disapproval in the gazes of her fellow Amish. To hear the women's comments around the sewing circle. She was the one who'd received a visit from a very unhappy bishop upon the discovery of what Jonathan had done and where he'd gone.

    Pretty soon he's going to stop being Amish. Most likely he's already made that choice," the bishop had commented after it was discovered that Jonathan was in France. His disapproval had been clear. Though they were friendly with their English neighbors, there was a dividing line. Though invisible, the barrier was all Rose had been raised to know. There was "them" and "us." Rose knew there was no middle ground.

    Being among the English had no doubt changed Jonathan. Supporting the war most likely did too. In all their months apart her feelings for him had never waned, yet how could she continue loving someone who had chosen to follow the world's way?" (pg 8).

    In the latest novel from best selling author, Tricia Goyer, A Christmas Gift for Rose, takes us back to the Amish community located in Berlin, Ohio during 1945, where we see the struggle that is working in the life of Rose Yoder when Jonathan left the Amish to join in the war efforts as a medic. It goes against everything they both were brought up to believe. Now that he has returned home, she has assured herself that their relationship is over but why do these feelings for him continue to linger? What will happen when Rose discovers that she too was born English? What will happen to the feelings she still has for Jonathan or will the faith she was brought up on as an Amish woman be too hard to let go of?

    I received A Christmas Gift for Rose by Tricia Goyer compliments of Zondervan Publishing and Litfuse Publicity for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation and the review is based on my personal opinion of the book. I love getting the opportunity to review books that bring not only a love for reading during the Christmas season but also share a wonderful message that lasts long after you finish the final page. Tricia Goyer is definitely one of my favorite authors so I LOVED being able to review this book just in time for the upcoming Christmas season. Trust me, you'll want to pick this one up if you love Christian Amish Romances set in the 1940's during a time of war for both the Amish and English communities. This shows what it really means behind sacrifice, deep love and discovering one's own true identity. The answers might just surprise you. I easily give this one a 5 out of 5 stars!

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  • Posted September 25, 2013

    Tricia's latest book is definitely a "to read" and one

    Tricia's latest book is definitely a "to read" and one that I highly recommend.  We are there through all that Rose must face.  What is it like to learn that after all of these years, Rose isn't really who she thought she was?  Instead of being Amish, she's...English?  What about her relationship with Jonathan?  What will become of them?  How will their already torn relationship heal after such a blow?  We follow along with Rose on her journey of faith, family, and love.  We even discover parts of ourselves as we do so.  Or, for me, that was how it was.  I could relate to parts of Rose's story and even found myself seeing how God has worked in my own life.  

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  • Posted September 23, 2013

    I never know what to expect from a novella. Will the story feel

    I never know what to expect from a novella. Will the story feel incomplete? Will it be too short? Will it come off as a bit cheesy? I'm often surprised (pleasantly), but Tricia Goyer's Christmas novella, A Christmas Gift for Rose, blew me away! If it gives you any indication, I plowed through that sweet story in a day. A day!

    Every time I read a book by Tricia Goyer, I'm amazed by the level of emotion her writing evokes from me. In this story I definitely felt a wide range of emotions—from frustration and sorrow to sympathy and hope. Also, I was impressed by how well she developed each character. At the end of this 192 pages, I felt as though I had truly gotten to know each of the characters. Additionally, this isn't just a simple, sweet Christmas story. Tricia uses this story to talk about tough topics like adoption, what truly makes a family, struggles of soldiers returning home from war, and the need for solid faith in God.

    As is true with many books, I wasn't quite ready to put the book down when I finished, but I loved every minute spent with the Rose and her family. I've already thought of several others who are sure to enjoy this book, and I'm thinking this might be the perfect addition to a Christmas gift! [5 stars]

    I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my fair and honest review.

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  • Posted September 23, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I think I enjoyed this little short story, as much as any of Tri

    I think I enjoyed this little short story, as much as any of Tricia's other novels.  Set in the 40's we are shown how WWII affected the Amish and the English alike.  Rose's story was heartbreaking, but you could easily relate to it.  I have to say I was surprised at the ending, because until the very end I had someone different picked to be Rose's English family.  So that was fun, a great surprise.  I would definitely recommend this book to anyone as a great story for Christmas (or anytime of the year.) A 5star story, with a great ending!
    This book was provided for review purposes only. 

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