Fifteen years. That’s how long it’s been since Hannah McLean set foot in the Amish community where she was raised. Through it all her heart has never forgotten Pontotoc—or Aaron Zook, her first love. Now widowed, and left with little more than her hurting teenager and her prayers, she returns home, even knowing she and her son may be turned away.
When Aaron learns Hannah has returned, he nearly falls to his knees. He’s a strong man, but lately the care of his three motherless children and family land have been more than he can handle. Now providence has delivered the first woman he loved, and with her, the rush of feelings they once shared. But will his simple, removed way of life leave Hannah longing for something more, or can they begin anew, finding a new way forward together?
Praise for Amy Lillard and her Wells Landing novels
“An inspirational story of romance, faith, and trust . . . will appeal to fans of Wanda Brunstetter and Beverly Lewis.”
—Library Journal on Caroline’s Secret
“A beautifully written romance with an adoring character. Lillard writes stories readers can relate to.” --RT Book Reviews on Just Plain Sadie
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There should have been more — balloons, fanfare, something to herald her return. But there was only the proud burgundy and gold sign that declared Hannah Gingerich McLean was back in Pontotoc.
She eased her car slowly through the town. It was nearing sundown and no one was about. Pontotoc was the kind of town that rolled up the sidewalks after supper. Once upon a time she had hated that small fact. Now it was more of a comfort than an annoyance. There were fewer people to witness her shame. When she'd left so many years ago, she had vowed never to return. It seemed like this was her year for breaking promises.
She sighed and turned to look at Brandon, slumped against the door, lips parted as he slept. When he was like this he still looked like her little boy, her baby. The one person she loved most in this world. Not the surly teenager who had taken over his body, but her precious angel.
"Hey." She touched his leg. "We're almost there." Pontotoc wasn't their final destination, but Randolph, the small community just south of town. There wasn't much in Randolph — just a water tower, a post office, and a community center. And home.
Brandon stirred. "Kay," he mumbled. "Why are we coming here again?"
Hannah took a deep breath and murmured the lie she had almost come to believe. "It's time you met your family here."
"I thought they didn't 'approve.'" He used air quotes around the last word, but didn't open his eyes.
Her family didn't approve, but she was counting on love to win out. Once upon a time she had been their precious angel.
Well ... that wasn't exactly true. Her twin sister, Leah, had always been the good child, while Hannah had been the handful, never quite fitting in with the rest of the community. Never quite accepting their ways. Willful, rebellious, contentious. But this was different.
"I've explained this," she said, her voice heavy with patience. "My grossmammi — grandmother — fell and broke her hip." At least that part was true. "Now my mother needs help with things until she gets well." It was as good of an excuse as any.
"Whatever." Brandon sighed and braced his Converse-clad feet on the dashboard. Any other car and she would have chastised him. But this was his car, a beat-up clunker that Mitchell had bought Brandon as a last-ditch effort to make amends. But as usual, the effort was too little, too late. And a little too soon. Brandon wouldn't be able to drive the car for another year and a half. At the time Mitch had presented him with the car, Hannah had been furious. Now she was grateful for the transportation. Without it, they would be on foot.
She peered over the steering wheel, trying to find her way. It was better by far than dwelling on the past. Past mistakes, past heartache, past lies.
But there was no escaping. She was driving into the past even as she called it a step toward the future. She shook the thought away and studied the landscape once more. Even in a tiny community like Randolph the vegetation changed. The tree line grew or was cut down. Flowers were planted, died, and bloomed once again. The turn was coming up, and she didn't want to miss it.
"I thought you said we were almost there." Brandon squinted through the bug-speckled windshield as Hannah veered to the left. A little farther on Topsy Road, then she would turn down the gravel road that led past the Gingerich drive. But she would have to watch carefully. After all this time, they had probably paved the lane through the Amish settlement.
Hannah eased the car down the lane, not allowing herself time to wonder what her mamm would think, her dat. Or the bishop. Gravel knocked against the bottom of the car. Going faster than twenty miles an hour was more than impossible. Driving slow gave her the extra minutes she needed to take it all in. It had been such a long time. Over fifteen years.
She spotted the fence before the road and the sign made of slats of siding, carefully hand-lettered to state that local honey, goat milk soap, jellies, jams, and storage sheds were available for sale. The weathered barbed wire stretched across the land, holding in goats and people alike. How could it be that after fifteen years the sign was still the same? The fence the same. The road still gravel. Nothing had changed.
And yet everything was different. Or maybe it was just her. She had been so glad to see the last of this place, with its run-down houses and dust that seemed to coat everything no matter how many times she swept and mopped. Theirs was one of the most conservative sects, not even allowing indoor plumbing or slow-moving triangles on the backs of their buggies.
She turned off the motor, then sighed. She knew everyone in the house had heard their arrival. The sound of an engine wasn't the most uncommon sound in a Plain community, but at this time of day ... It would only be a matter of seconds before someone peeked out the window, came out onto the front porch to make out the identity of their unexpected visitor.
The thought made her heart pound, her mouth dry, and her palms damp. What was she doing here? Just ... what?
"Is this it?"
She nodded, unable to get a word past the lump in her throat. She could only imagine what it looked like through his eyes. She had grown up here; some of the best times of her life had happened right there on that front porch. But those were all wrapped up with the worst times. All the times she couldn't understand the rules or the benefits in living such an austere life. All the times she had snuck out to meet Aaron.
Aaron. Now there was another memory altogether.
"It looks so ..." For once Brandon seemed at a loss for words.
"I told you; they are very conservative."
"Yeah." He nodded slowly, but didn't take his gaze from the house before him. Like most in the area, the house was white, plain, and covered with siding. The barns and outbuildings were protected with the same corrugated tin, though in a deep red. Only the orange dust that floated so freely about took the edge off the contrast.
Once again the truth of her situation slammed into her. How was she going to make it through?
Surely there was another way. She should be able to come up with some plan that would keep her from having to crawl back home on her hands and knees. The car's engine gave one last knock, as if it had traveled its last mile. She'd had to crawl back almost literally. And there was no other course of action she could take. Mitch had seen to that.
But there were things she could have done. She should have written more. She could have waited for a response. She should have made certain that she and Brandon would be welcome instead of hoping against the odds that love would overcome objection, even after all the years that had passed. But just how did a person say, I have no place to go. I need to come home, can I stay? And what would she have done if they told her she wasn't welcome?
"Let's get this over with," Brandon grumbled and opened his door.
Hannah didn't bother to correct his attitude as she got out of the car and turned toward the house.
A plump, barefoot woman in a plain green dress and a gray apron stood on the porch holding open the door and staring at Hannah as if she had seen the Lord Himself come back. Her hair was covered by the traditional Amish prayer kapp, but what Hannah could see of it was gray. She didn't remember it being that gray.
"Hannah?" The word was barely a hopeful whisper.
"It's me, Mamm." She took a couple of steps toward all the things she had left behind so many years ago.
This was the moment she had been dreading and anticipating. She took two more steps toward her mother, the house. Then she stopped, wrapped her fingers around Brandon's arm, and steered him forward. She tried to convince herself she had done that to introduce him, but she needed him by her side. The one steady in her life right now.
She almost stumbled as her father came out onto the porch, settling his hat into place as he peered at her car.
"Abner," her mother said, her clear voice still barely above a whisper. "It's Hannah. Our Hannah has come home."
Her father grunted once, then jumped off the porch and strode purposefully toward the barn. He disappeared readily into the shadows.
He didn't even glance toward them as he walked past.
"Nice, Mom," Brandon muttered under his breath.
But Hannah didn't have time to comment before her mother rushed toward her and enveloped her in the loving arms she had missed so much. The familiar scents of vanilla, homemade soap, and honest sweat filled her senses and all else fled from her mind.
"Your letter said you were coming home, but I dared not hope."
Tears stung Hannah's eyes. The last few weeks, months, had almost been more than she could stand. Her legs went weak with the relief.
She had missed her mother more than anything else. But the Ordnung was clear about such matters. Hannah couldn't live under Amish laws, so she had left, and in leaving she had sacrificed her contact with her family.
Mamm set her away, but retained the hold on her arms. "Look at you." She brushed the hair back from Hannah's brow. "So Englisch."
She knew she looked nothing like the girl who had left. She had cut her chestnut-colored hair first thing and never let it grow past her shoulders. Mitch had liked it lighter than nature had determined, and Hannah had kept it heavily highlighted to appease him.
Her clothes weren't the fanciest she owned. She was accustomed to going around in top label pantsuits and designer heels. But when she packed her bags she grabbed her comfies from the back of the closet, those clothes she wore only when Mitch wasn't around.
Mamm pulled her close for another quick squeeze, then turned toward her companion.
"This is Brandon," she said. "Your grandson. Brandon, this is your grandmother." How uncomfortable to introduce them after fifteen years.
The sting of her father's rejection and the awkwardness of the evening subsided as her mother put her hands on Brandon's shoulders. "Let me have a look at you. You're the image of your mother, you know."
To Brandon's credit, he didn't roll his eyes. He even let her pat his cheek and fuss over him a bit.
To her mother's credit, she didn't say a word about his long hair or the ring in his lip. But Hannah could see the questions she had about both.
"Hannah?" A hesitant voice sounded close by, and she turned her attention from the long-overdue interaction between her mother and her son to the young woman who approached. "You made it."
"Gracie?" She couldn't hold back the tears any longer as her cousin took her turn to greet her. Though Gracie had been only ten when Hannah and Leah had left their Amish home, Hannah would have known her anywhere. Same big blue eyes that seemed to swallow up her face, same sweet dimples and unassuming disposition. "Oh, Hannah! I'm so glad you're home."
"I'm glad too." And she was. Glad to be home, glad to have her son at her side. If only her father were as happy. "Dat," she said, glancing toward the barn.
Her mother wiped her eyes with the end of her apron and shook her head. "Give him time, Hannah Mae. Now come on in the house. I'll get you something to eat."
* * *
Hell. That was the only way to describe it. He'd fallen asleep in the car, and he woke up in hell. Dusty, run-down, and sad, but hell all the same.
Brandon rubbed his eyes once again, hoping that when he was good and awake things would look better, but he knew that wasn't going to happen.
His mother didn't talk about her childhood much. Not like his friends' parents did. Now he understood why. Geez! How did people live like this?
"Are you coming?" Mom stopped, one foot on the first of the wooden steps that led to the weathered porch.
She couldn't be serious, but she seemed to be. They were really going to stay here?
His new grandmother was standing in the doorway, the screen door open as she waited for his response.
Somehow he put his feet into motion and followed behind them.
The inside of the house was dim, only the dying sun from the windows giving light to the rooms. What he could see of it was clean and smelled like the pizzeria that was down the street from their apartment in the city. He figured that was bread or something else baking in the oven that had surely come straight out of the Clampetts'.
The whole place might be out of the history books, but it seemed okay enough. The scent of lemon detergent mixed with the yeasty aroma to form a blend that was both homey and welcoming.
But this isn't your home.
Like he needed a reminder.
He shoved his hands into his pockets and eyed the room around him. Sparse and crowded were the first two words to enter his thoughts. And a far cry from their Nashville home. There was nothing on the walls, all the furniture looked to be made out of only wood, and there was no carpet on the floor.
But it's clean and sort of inviting.
He pushed the voice away. He didn't want to see any good in this move. His mother had told him that it was just a stopping point until they could get his father's estate settled, but after seeing her hugging his grandmother, he was beginning to think otherwise.
People seemed to materialize from nowhere. The woman who had met them outside had followed them in. Now another girl not much older than him approached, her eyes sparkling.
They were all dressed the same, with funny little caps on their heads, dresses, and aprons. None of them had on shoes.
He couldn't imagine his mother ever wearing such an outfit or going around barefoot, but if she had truly grown up here he supposed she must have.
He shoved his hands a bit deeper into his pockets and tried to make himself as small as possible. He was tired and angry and not ready to meet all these people. Couldn't they put this off until tomorrow?
"Brandon, this is your aunt Tillie."
"Hi." He gave a quick shrug. The woman looked a little like his mom, with the same color eyes. But her hair was darker, more of a coffee sort of brown, instead of the streaky reddish blond his mother faithfully kept up.
"Are you hungry?" his grandmother asked. He didn't even know what to call her. Had he ever heard his mother actually say her name? He couldn't remember.
Like he cared. All he wanted was to be out of here as quickly as possible. Yesterday.
Mom shook her head. "I'm fine. Brandon?"
He shrugged again without taking his hands from his pockets. "Whatever."
His mother and grandmother stared at him as if he had just walked off an alien spaceship, but he didn't care. He didn't want to be here, and he wasn't about to pretend otherwise.
"Eunice? Who's there?"
His grandmother looked back to Mom. "That's Mammi."
"I'll go." His mother glanced to him as if he should volunteer to go with her, but no way. He'd had enough of meeting people he never wanted to know for one day.
"Whatever," he said again and flung himself down at the kitchen table.
"I have pie."
He turned to look at his grandmother. His aunt hovered behind, along with the woman named Gracie. He heard the door open as someone else entered the small house. So weird to meet these people and find out that he was related to them though he had just now seen them for the first time. He was practically an adult!
"And cold milk."
He shrugged one shoulder. Pie sounded awesome. But he didn't want to appear excited. So lame. "Sure. Whatever."
She gave him a questioning glance, then moved around the kitchen that looked as if it belonged in a museum exhibit. Tillie and Gracie slid into chairs across from him. They propped their chins on their hands and watched him like spectators at a baseball game while he pretended not to notice. Or to care. His grandmother puttered around, and before he knew it, she slid a piece of pie and a large glass of milk in front of him.
"Thanks." He sat up straight and picked up the fork resting on the edge of the plate.
"Danki." His grandmother smiled.
"What?" he asked around his bite of pie. Blackberry. Yum. But he wasn't about to say too much. No sense letting everyone know they could get to him. Now, if it had been an apple pie ... "Is that like Amish for you're welcome?"
"It's Dutch for thank you," Tillie said.
He took a gulp of the milk. It tasted a little weird — not bad like it had turned or anything, just different. "Dutch?"
"Pennsylvania Dutch." His grandmother gave a quick nod, then moved away as his mother came back into the room.
Weird. He thought they were German.
Mom sat in the chair next to him, releasing a sigh as she eased down. She looked beat, but he wasn't about to show concern. She was the reason they were in this mess.
Excerpted from "A Home For Hannah"
Copyright © 2018 Amy Lillard.
Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
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.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
It seems that you can have faith that God is in control!
A Home for Hannah – Amy Lillard A new heartwarming, heartrending series set in the Amish community of Pontotoc, MS. This new offering from Amy Lillard is filled with faith that is both comfortable and stretched to its limits. If you are just stepping into the Amish genre, this book is a great place to start. If you have been reading Amish themed novels since they hit the market, you will enjoy this romance with its twists on the usual family structure and problems that present what seems to be an unfixable situation. But never underestimate the power of God to find a solution where we see none! A Home for Hannah is the kind of story that interferes with your life……….you won’t want to put it down!
Fifteen years ago, Hannah left her strict Amish community and the young boy she loved to live among the English for a little while. Something happens and she winds up getting married and has a son. Now, newly widowed with a teenage son, she is back needing a place to stay until her financial matters get worked out. Will her parents allow her to stay?? Will the community allow her to stay?? She runs into her first love and realizes he is widowed with young daughters. She wonders – did she ever stop loving him, but she knows it’s too late, she is now English. This is a wonderful story with love, loss, happiness and sadness, but most of all forgiveness. Amy Lillard never fails to tap into many of our emotions, such a wonderful writer. I had a hard time putting it down so will you.
Choices from the past affect their future... For several years now Amy Lillard has been one of my main go-to Amish fiction authors so I was pretty excited to find out that she had a new series coming out, A Home For Hannah being the first book. One of the things I like about her books is that she writes about Amish communities in locations that we wouldn't traditionally think of as Amish, this time in Mississippi. While I am in a much different season of life than Hannah and Aaron, Amy Lillard painted them in such a sympathetic light that I was totally invested in their story, their circumstances, the choices they made. Even when I had to go about other things I found myself thinking, and wondering, about the characters and what might happen next. It really didn't take me long to read A Home For Hannah, as with most Amy Lillard books, and I definitely enjoyed my time in Pontotoc. If you are an Amish fiction fan this is a series to check out! (I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher. All opinions are entirely my own.)
A Home For Hannah is such a good family story, a mother and son, a father and three small children. Then there is A Mother and Father and their daughter who left for the Englisch world who has come back and wants to be accepted. Then there is true love. You have first love who was and then wasn't and then they both got married to others and both lost them and now have found each other again - isn't that awesome? Is that love going to rekindle? especially with children involved and with Hannah being in the Englisch world? Will Hannah's family accept her and her son, being that she went to that world? This is such a book of love and a great book of the beginning in the Pontotoc Series and I cannot wait until the second one comes out and I pray for the privilege to be able to read that one as well. I received a copy of this book from the Publisher and Netgalley; all the opinions expressed in this review are all my own.
Are you ready? I hope so, we are off on a new adventure with Amy Lillard and her new release in a Home for Hannah. We are head to Pototonc, MS where we will meet a wonderful loving and forgiving community. Hannah McClean returns home confused and wondering how her life has come to this.While Hannah tries to figure out her next move, secrets come to the surface that will leave you saying, NO! I will not spoil this wonderful story by Lillard by giving to much away. I honestly thought this was just a wonderfully written story of how love continues to win. I will be waiting and anticipating for Lillards next release in this new series. Make sure you pick up your copy today friends you won't be disappointed.
This is one of my wow books for the year. I could not put this book down and I was not feeling good. When I am sick I have a hard time concentrating on what I am reading but not with this book. I had to know what Hannah and Aaron were going to do. Would Hannah rejoin the Amish church or would she remained n English. How would her son Brandon feel about everything. I loved this from beginning to the end. I can’t wait to see what the next book in this series will be like. I received a copy of this book from the author for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
Hannah has some hard choices to make. She struggles with wanting to return to her former Amish life but with a son who has never lived Amish and a former Amish 1st love... She is having to learn that to return to her Amish family she will have to return to her faith and to confess some secrets that may tear her whole family and life apart. I enjoy reading about the Amish and this book has a story line that shows us how family and their faith is so very important. I really liked this story about Hannah. I was gifted a copy and my review is voluntary..
I felt I was walking in the door with Hannah as she comes back home under dire circumstances in A Home for Hannah. Amy Lillard's detailed descriptions painted the picture for me of how this sect of the Amish live and play. That plus her descriptions of the family and how they interacted with each other kept me turning the pages. I loved reading about Hannah and the struggles she goes through trying to find her faith and hopefully her love once again. She always put her son first in every circumstance like all Mothers do. Only wanting the best for him she always tries to find a workable solution for her family first. I can't wait to read more from this series. There were so many great charactors and I want to know about each one! A great book! I received this book from the author and was not required to give a positive review.
A Home for Hannah by Amy Lillard is the first story in Amish of Pontotoc series. Hannah McLean is returning home to Pontotoc, Mississippi with her son, Brandon after the death of her husband. Hannah needs a place for them to stay until the estate is settled (her husband left her with a mess). She had left the community fifteen years prior to explore the Englisch world. Pontotoc is a conservative Amish settlement that does not have indoor plumbing (that is so wrong). It will be a big adjustment for her son, Brandon. When Hannah left she broke Aaron Zook’s heart. Aaron is now a widow with three children to care for as well as his farm. He prefers training horses, but there is little opportunity for that in his area. Aaron just received an offer for a job in Ohio working with horses which he is thinking about accepting until Hannah returns. His feelings for Hannah have not changed, but they can only be together if Hannah joins the Amish faith. But can they overcome the past to have a future? Can Hannah return to a simpler way of life? A Home for Hannah is a sweet Amish romance. It does contain some nice writing, but I found the pace slow (which made the book feel long and drawn out). In some places the story stalled out (failed to move forward). The POV moves between Hannah, Aaron and Brandon. I enjoyed Brandon’s story more than Hannah and Aaron’s. He is taken away from everything that is familiar and thrust into a world with no computer, gaming devices or a phone (or indoor toilet). Brandon’s cousin, Joshua Gingerich befriends Brandon and shows how to enjoy life without modern technology (fishing for example). I failed to connect with Hannah. Her indecision, blaming others and her life choices were frustrating (after 15 years you cannot use lack of education and naivete as an excuse). There was too much redundancy in A Home for Hannah. The same questions or thoughts are repeated in each chapter (mostly in the first half of the book). A Home for Hannah just seemed off. I found it lacking (like the author was holding back and not letting the story flow naturally). I wanted more depth added to the story and less predictability. A Home for Hannah could have used a rewrite.
I enjoyed this “going home again” story by Amy Lillard. The storyline kept my interest as the characters struggled with resolving their conflicts. I liked the fact that the author respected Amish beliefs and allowed them to keep their integrity, but clearly showed their love for others through a difficult situation. I believe this is the first book of a new series, and I look forward to reading more about this community.
Amish fiction from Amy Lillard isn't your typical cookie-cutter story. If you've read her Wells Landing books you know the Amish in them seem a bit more progressive and even use tractors as a means of transportation. A Home for Hannah fits right in with Amy bringing something different to the genre. This story takes place in Mississippi in a very conservative Amish community. No tractor-riding Amish to be found here. This group doesn't even have indoor plumbing. Amy Lillard brings us a story of going home, trying to fit in, and looking forward. Hannah left the Amish fifteen years ago and circumstances have brought her and her son back. It's hard for Hannah to come home but she has no other choice. She is greeted with a mix of emotions from her family. Some, like her mother and cousin Gracie, are accepting of her and her son, Brandon, right away. Others, like her father, are a bit more standoffish. I liked that Hannah wasn't greeted with open arms by everyone. It seemed very realistic that some would be a bit more hesitant to welcome her home and be willing to forgive the past. There is tension between Hannah and her childhood friend/former boyfriend Aaron. These two have quite the past and as the story progresses and I learned more it was easy to understand why that tension existed and was interesting to see how the two characters dealt with it. While I enjoyed this book and Hannah and Brandon's story I thought there was something lacking. At times the story seemed to stall and the pace of the book seemed off at times. I almost felt like the author was holding back and not letting the story flow as freely as it wanted. I also found it a bit hard at times to connect with the characters. Except for Brandon who was probably my favorite character. He seemed genuine and was an innocent party to all that had happened in his life and was just really easy to like. I enjoyed watching the friendship form between Brandon and his cousin Joshua. I also liked Brandon's curiosity about the Amish and how he tried to adjust to a completely different life than what he was familiar with. All in all, this wasn't a bad story and it fits the Amy Lillard brand of Amish fiction. I'm sure fans of Amy's will enjoy the book as well as those looking for something other than the usual Amish fiction story. I am looking forward to the next book in the series to see what is happening in this Mississippi Amish community. I received a free copy of this book from the author and was not required to write a review. All opinions are mine.
This is the first book in a new series, Amish of Pontotoc. What a fantastic start to a new series, the story focuses on Hannah, Brandon, and Aaron. A Home for Hannah is about a young Amish girl who leaves her community to see what the English world is all about. Fifteen years later, she returns back to the Amish community she left? I enjoyed reading about Hannah, and the struggles she goes through. Hannah is pulled between the love she has for her son and faith of her community. Will the Amish community welcome her back? Or will she be shunned? Aaron Zook was Hannah’s first love, now a widower with 3 children to raise and a farm to run. But Aaron prefers training horses and he has received job offer in Ohio working with horses. Will he accept the offer and move away? Or will his feelings for Hannah make him stay? Will they be able to overcome their past to have a future together? Will Hannah find a place to call home? This is a story of hope and inspiration! Amy Lillard does thorough research into her characters and settings. Amy has taken the setting from the real town of Pontotoc, Mississippi. And the characters have such genuine feelings and thoughts that the everyday person would have. You will laugh and even shed a tear with these characters. If you are a fan of Amish Fiction you will not be disappointed. Grab a copy of Amy’s new book and curl up with a cuppa and enjoy. I am looking forward to the release of A Love for Leah later this year!
A Home for Hannah is book one in the the Amish of Pontotoc series by Amy Lillard. What a wonderful start to this new series by Amy Lillard. This is such a touching read that will surly capture your heart. Take an emotional roller coaster ride with Hannah & Aaron as their story unfolds. Be sure to get your copy of the book today.
Amy Lillard has done it again! Such a great read. This book, part 1 of a 2 part series tells the story of Hannah, who returns to her Amish community after 15 years as an "Englisher". She is a widow with a teenage son and searches for answers to resolve the secrets of her past. This book involves situations that are very true to life, even in the life of Amish people. It teaches, at least in my opinion, the importance of communication in families. That and trust. Trust in your family and friends and in the Lord. A very well written, well paced book with lots of the human feelings and experiences that all of us understand and may have to deal with at some time in our lives. This was a very enjoyable book. You will really love it! I received a copy of this book from the author. All thoughts are my own.
Lillard is one of my go to authors especially for Amish fiction. I've loved her books and A Home for Hannah is right up at the top. It was nice to get to know the Amish of Pontotoc, Mississippi especially Hannah and her family and Aaron Zook and his. They have a past since they were each other's first loves and even though fifteen years have passed with her living in the Englisch world and married to another when she returns home it's like they were never apart in their feelings for each other. Since she ran away without telling him or giving him a reason, why can they really pick up where they left off if she does enter the church and becomes Amish again? He was married in the interim as well and has three children but his wife died almost a year ago. . When Hannah returns with her fifteen year old son it's because her husband has died and left her with lots of debts that his estate has to work through and has nowhere else to go. Watching Hannah with one foot in the Amish world, or "Amish Land" as her son calls it, and one foot int he Englisch world was heartbreaking.. Watching Hannah reunite with her family and get closer one minute and take two or three steps back the next hurt my heart. She did the same with Aaron. It was nice to see how her son began to understand the Amish world even if he knew he wouldn't be comfortable living in it forever but could see his mom embracing her upbringing once again. Having his cousin, Joshua, help him navigate some of the pitfalls was helpful and seeing how Brandon was readily accepted was nice and unexpected. Watching Brandon shed some of his surliness as he got to know his relatives he never knew he had was heartwarming. Brandon had questions answered about her past and even his childhood and his feelings often brought a smile to my face. Seeing her family and Aaron learn of most of the events at the same time was touching There were lots of prayers, getting to know you moments, matchmaking, cooking, chores, the church, love, friendship, laughter, tears and love. There were twists and turns to the story but some expected happenings too. The bishop was more understanding than I expected. There is wonderful closure, not at all what I expected. I can't wait to return to Pontotoc over and over again to find out what everyone's up to since there is much more story to tell!
A HOME FOR HANNAH ( AMISH OF PONTOTOC #1) AMY LILLARD A Home for Hannah is the first book in Amy Lillard's new series Amish of Pontotoc. After fifteen years Hannah (Gingerich) McLean, and her son Brandon, return to Hannah's Amish community in Pontotoc Mississippi. They are living with Hannah's parents on their farm. Aaron Zook, a widower, is raising his children and running his farm by himself. When Hannah sees Aaron, she realizes that her "feelings" for Aaron, her "first love" have not changed but Hannah must consider Brandon and his well being before her own. Hannah becomes "confused" as to whether she wants to remain in Pontotoc to face her attraction to Aaron or move to another town. Hannah is also hiding a "secret" that will affect the lives around her. How about Brandon, who has no cell phone, no electricity and all the other modern conveniences that he has been used to. How is he adapting to this move to Pontotoc. A Home for Hannah is a well written story of romance, learning to trust, learning to have faith and starting over. I highly recommend reading this book, and I am looking forward to the next books in this series of the Amish of Pontotoc. I was given a copy to read and review for my honest opinion
A Home For Hannah ( Amish Of Pontotoc #1 ) By: Amy Lillard A Home For Hannah is book one in the new series Amish of Pontotoc. I really loved this story . The author did a fantastic job on the story and the characters. The story felt so real that I caught myself crying several times. There was one place and verse that touched my heart and lifted me up. Hannah returns home to Pontotoc with her teenage son after fifteen years as an Englisher. Will the community welcome her home? What about her son, what will happen to him? Coming back home brings back memories for Hannah. What should she do? There is also Aaron ,her first love. How does he feel about Hannah all these years? This is a wonderful love story and I did not want to put it down. I received a complimentary ARC , but was not told that I had to give a positive review.
One thing I love about Amy Lillard is her ability to make places come alive. It's one thing to have a good story line, but breathing life into the background it's set in really brings the story to life and adds an extra dimension. After diving in you really felt drawn into Pontotoc. The town lived. Hannah's son, Brandon, really stood out in the story. His story line was really strong and powerful. I'm hoping he will be in other stories in the series. I also really liked the bishop. He was a pretty smart guy and for a minor character, stole a lot of the scenes. Hannah's biggest problem is wanting to control all of the situations she is in. She's been hurt so often, trust is hard. You see throughout the story that God is there, gently guiding her. Characters are put in her path throughout the book that light the way. The book moved at a really good pace until we got to the end. I felt like it was a little rushed and there were still some things that didn't get resolved. I'm hoping they tie together in the second book. Disclaimer: *Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would mention/review it . I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions 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.*
This was a different type of Amish story from most I've read. Amish do have problems just as non-Amish, it's just usually handled within their community and their church. All Hannah wanted to do was just get a little taste of the "English" world before joining the church. But when she was ready to return things happened that kept her from returning. She waited 15 years before she came back to her Amish home. Her husband passed away and left her with no money. She spent time waffling back and forth about whether to return to her Amish upbringing and join the church or stay as she had lived for fifteen years. Her main concern was her son who had been raised in the English world with electricity, electronics, cars and phones. That's all he had known. And of course there was a man that Hannah had been in love with when she left. How had his life changed over the years? It's hard to imagine living that long without any contact with parents and siblings other than a handful of letters. Reconnecting with God was difficult too. Hannah felt like God wasn't listening to her when she did try to begin praying once again. Lying had become as natural to her as breathing. How can this tangled web of lies ever get straightened out? I found myself asking these questions as I read along. At times the situation seemed almost impossible, but with God all things are possible. Since this is the first in a new series, I hope I hear more about this family and get to invest some time in their lives. I received a complimentary copy of this novel but was not required to write a review.
I enjoyed Hannah's story so much. What a great start to a new series! I feel like I can't wait until the next story is out and I can return to this interesting community and heartfelt characters. I loved the history that Aaron and Hannah shared and the way that they were drawn together all of these years later. There was great romantic tension between these two! I thought that the author did a very good job of illustrating the feelings that Hannah and Aaron had for each other, both past and present. However, life events kept them apart for so long. And even through this story, the worries of the world and not giving full trust to God could keep them apart again. This story was really packed with interesting characters, from Hannah's extended family and her son, to Aaron's sweet children. They all combined to make this story feel very authentic. I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
This is the first in a new series featuring the Amish in Pontotoc, Mississippi. Hannah Troyer left her Amish roots years ago to find her way in the English world. After her husband dies she learns things about him she hadn’t known. With all assets tied up or being sold she has no place to go. So, she and her fifteen-year-old son, Brandon, set out to visit and stay with family in Pontotoc. Since she isn’t officially shunned her mamm welcomes her back but her dat not so much. Decisions will need to be made and complicating those decisions is Aaron Zook, the man she was in love with before she left. Will seeing Aaron again muddle her thoughts and complicate decisions? Will the love they once shared be reawakened? Will Hannah find what we all want, a place to call home? A story of hope and inspiration! Author Amy Lillard writes her characters with authentic feelings and does thorough research. Can’t wait for Book Two! I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.