Bonnet Strings: An Amish Woman's Ties to Two Worlds

Bonnet Strings: An Amish Woman's Ties to Two Worlds

by Saloma Miller Furlong
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

At age twenty, Saloma Miller left behind her Amish community in Burton, Ohio, and boarded a night train for Vermont, where she knew no one. In this poignant coming-of-age memoir, Saloma’s new life of freedom includes work as a waitress and plans to continue her education. Romance also blossoms with a Yankee toymaker.

Soon, however, a vanload of people from

Overview

At age twenty, Saloma Miller left behind her Amish community in Burton, Ohio, and boarded a night train for Vermont, where she knew no one. In this poignant coming-of-age memoir, Saloma’s new life of freedom includes work as a waitress and plans to continue her education. Romance also blossoms with a Yankee toymaker.

Soon, however, a vanload of people from her community, including the Amish bishop, arrive to take her back into the fold. Saloma’s freedom comes to an abrupt end when she goes back home to Ohio with them. Thus begins a years-long struggle of feeling torn between two worlds: will she remain Amish and embrace the sense of belonging and community her Amish life offers, or will she return to the newfound freedom she tasted in Vermont?

Saloma settles into teaching in an Amish school and does her best to fit back into Amish ways, but a legacy of childhood abuse, struggles with an eating disorder, and questions of identity plague her. Her ties to the outside world remain, mostly through the quiet perseverance of the toymaker from Vermont. He keeps sending her cards, never giving up hope that their love could survive the strain of living in two different worlds.

Bonnet Strings by Saloma Miller Furlong offers a universal story of overcoming adversity and a rare look inside an Amish community. Readers of Amish fiction and viewers of the PBS documentaries such as The Amish and The Amish: Shunned will find in it a true story: of woundedness and healing, of doubt and faith, and of the often competing desires for freedom and belonging.

Editorial Reviews

author of Blush: A Mennonite Girl Meets a Glittering World - Shirley Hershey Showalter

“This story includes all the elements of a good romance—attraction, danger, secrets, beautiful scenery, obstacles, culture clashes, and oldfashioned chivalry. You will cheer for Saloma and the sense of self God placed in her.”

author of The Outcast - Jolina Petersheim

“Saloma Miller Furlong explores the complexities of duty and desire, defining the careful balance between familial responsibility and the pursuit of true love. You will rejoice with Saloma as she acquires independence from her previously cloistered lifestyle among the Amish and recall your own first glimpse of someone you knew would capture your heart—and therefore change your world forever. Bonnet Strings is a memoir not to be missed.”

professor of language and literature, Eastern Mennonite University - Vi Dutcher

“In this memoir of the Bildungsroman genre, Saloma Miller Furlong writes carefully and artfully of the inner pain and joy she experiences as she finds her way, both outside of her home community and inside it. In addition, her partner David’s voice provides readers with a poignant lens with which to view Furlong’s journey.”

researcher at Resarch Centre Gotha, University of Erfurt, Germany - Lucinda Martin

Bonnet Strings paints an intimate portrait of one woman’s struggle to find an authentic path for herself among the Amish. Saloma Miller Furlong vividly portrays the warmth and love in her tight-knit community but also what it was like to try to live according to her community’s strict rules. The reader cheers as Furlong overcomes obstacles to create a life true to herself and her faith.”

author of I Am Hutterite - Mary-Ann Kirkby

“This is a remarkable story about a young Amish woman who, against all odds, chooses destiny over expectation. A beautiful memoir…It will break your heart and piece it back together again.”

coauthor of The Amish and scholar of Amish life - Donald B. Kraybill

“Suspended between two cultural worlds, Saloma tells an engaging story about her struggle to decide which one to claim as her own.”

producer of The Amish and The Amish: Shunned - Callie T. Wiser

“[Bonnet Strings] is a story of empathy and depth that reveals the wrenching decision that Amish people who consider leaving their culture must make.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780836198584
Publisher:
MennoMedia
Publication date:
02/03/2014
Pages:
337
Sales rank:
561,696
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author

Saloma Miller Furlong is the author of Why I Left the Amish: A Memoir and she was featured in the PBS documentaries “The Amish” and “The Amish: Shunned” that aired on American Experience. She graduated from Smith College in May 2007 with a major in German and a minor in Philosophy. Saloma resides in the Pioneer Valley in Massachusetts with her husband, David.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >