The Return (Amish Beginnings Series #3)

The Return (Amish Beginnings Series #3)

by Suzanne Woods Fisher
4.8 45

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Overview

The Return (Amish Beginnings Series #3) by Suzanne Woods Fisher

Beautiful and winsome, Betsy Zook never questioned her family's rigid expectations, nor those of devoted Hans, but then she never had to. Not until the night when she's taken captive in a surprise Indian raid. During her captivity, Betsy faces brutality and hardship, but also unexpected kindness. She draws strength from native Caleb, who encourages her to find God in all circumstances. She finds herself torn between her pious upbringing and the intense new feelings this compelling man awakens within her.

Handsome and complex, Hans is greatly anguished by Betsy's captivity and turns to Tessa Bauer for comfort. Eagerly, Tessa responds, overlooking troubling signs of Hans's hunger for revenge. When Betsy is finally restored to the Amish, have things gone too far between Hans and Tessa?

Inspired by true events, this deeply layered novel gives a glimpse into the tumultuous days of prerevolutionary Pennsylvania through the eyes of two young, determined, and faith-filled women.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780800727505
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 08/01/2017
Series: Amish Beginnings Series , #3
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 47,389
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than two dozen novels, including Anna's Crossing and The Newcomer in the Amish Beginnings series, The Bishop's Family series, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Twitter @suzannewfisher.

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The Return (Amish Beginnings Series #3) 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 48 reviews.
Debragg 2 hours ago
Author Suzanne Woods Fisher has done it again. Every book she writes is a treasure. She has written another book in her series called. An Amish Beginnings Novel.  This one is called "The Return". Betty Zook has always done what everyone expected of her and she never even thought of disagreeing with them. Hans has always taken care of her and made sure she was safe. Then life is never the same. She is taken by the Indians and held a prisoner. While she is gone Hans gets interested I someone, but Betty also starts to like an Indian. What will happen to them? Is Betsy going to be a prisoner forever? What about her family? I give this book a 5/5. I was given this book for a review by Revell  Publishing Company and all opinions are mine.
Deana0326 19 hours ago
In the third installment in the series called An Amish Beginning the author takes us back to the late 1700s. I was so fascinated by the history in this book that I couldn't put it down. It is obvious that the author has done great in -depth research about this time period. I learned about the Amish during this time. They were God fearing people who believed that a woman should be seen and not heard. I was astounded at that. In those days the women' s duties were to cook , clean and take care of the family. The men were the only ones to have any significant place as leader in the church. In contrast the women are revered in Native American culture. I didn't know that and was quite surprised to learn how important they were to the tribe. Each character was written with clarity and I loved how the author gave us details about their daily life's. It was interesting to read about Benjamin Franklin and other well known men that became a big part of our history. I was captivated by the Native Americans and how they survived off the land. When a young woman is captured by a tribe I found their compassion for the girl to be genuine. Betsy at first was frightened but as the days and weeks came and went, the author showed us how Betsy had matured and began to love the people she was with. There was lots of danger surrounding the towns as rumors of vicious attacks were imminent. The times were heard for the town and I loved how they protected each other. I was completely engrossed in this book because it was so well written with historical events and how people survived during attacks on their families. There is so much to this story that had me on pins and needles. I have to mention Caleb because he was my favorite character. He was called a half breed and not really accepted anywhere. His heart was full of God and he never forget his mother bringing him up as a Christian. He will be a very important part of the story but I won't give it away. One thing that someone said in the book really stuck with me. One of the characters said," The worst thing to do is to assume all people belong under a defining label." That one statement really sums up the story for me. There was much prejudice in the story as people assumed since you were a Native American you were a savage. It struck me as what we do today. We label people because we think because of their color, religion or their ancestors make them something that is perceived and not always true. In the story people would say that all Native Americans were savage and needed to be killed. There were some bloody scenes but I thought the author did an amazing job of describing them in a delicate way. I found this story to be very powerful and true to the time period. I look forward to the next book in the series. It promises to be just as powerful and filled with historical facts that define our nation. I received a copy of this book from Revell Publishing Group. The review is my own opinion.
Deana0326 19 hours ago
In the third installment in the series called An Amish Beginning the author takes us back to the late 1700s. I was so fascinated by the history in this book that I couldn't put it down. It is obvious that the author has done great in -depth research about this time period. I learned about the Amish during this time. They were God fearing people who believed that a woman should be seen and not heard. I was astounded at that. In those days the women' s duties were to cook , clean and take care of the family. The men were the only ones to have any significant place as leader in the church. In contrast the women are revered in Native American culture. I didn't know that and was quite surprised to learn how important they were to the tribe. Each character was written with clarity and I loved how the author gave us details about their daily life's. It was interesting to read about Benjamin Franklin and other well known men that became a big part of our history. I was captivated by the Native Americans and how they survived off the land. When a young woman is captured by a tribe I found their compassion for the girl to be genuine. Betsy at first was frightened but as the days and weeks came and went, the author showed us how Betsy had matured and began to love the people she was with. There was lots of danger surrounding the towns as rumors of vicious attacks were imminent. The times were heard for the town and I loved how they protected each other. I was completely engrossed in this book because it was so well written with historical events and how people survived during attacks on their families. There is so much to this story that had me on pins and needles. I have to mention Caleb because he was my favorite character. He was called a half breed and not really accepted anywhere. His heart was full of God and he never forget his mother bringing him up as a Christian. He will be a very important part of the story but I won't give it away. One thing that someone said in the book really stuck with me. One of the characters said," The worst thing to do is to assume all people belong under a defining label." That one statement really sums up the story for me. There was much prejudice in the story as people assumed since you were a Native American you were a savage. It struck me as what we do today. We label people because we think because of their color, religion or their ancestors make them something that is perceived and not always true. In the story people would say that all Native Americans were savage and needed to be killed. There were some bloody scenes but I thought the author did an amazing job of describing them in a delicate way. I found this story to be very powerful and true to the time period. I look forward to the next book in the series. It promises to be just as powerful and filled with historical facts that define our nation. I received a copy of this book from Revell Publishing Group. The review is my own opinion.
BrittanyMc 1 days ago
The Return is a book that really grabbed my attention once I started reading it. It is part of the Amish Beginnings series, however, it is set quite a while after books one and two. I have read the first two books, so I knew the original characters. However, I think I could have picked this book up and enjoyed it even without having read the other two books. I really enjoyed that there were two main storylines. One was set in the Amish community and was viewed from Tessa and her mother, Anna’s, perspectives. The other storyline followed Betsy, and what she went through while she was a captive of Indians. The author did a great job of making me feel that I was back in the time and place of these characters. I also felt very connected to some characters and it was hard to find that the novel was coming to an end. I’d love to read more about these people. I was left wanting a bit more to this story when the final page was turned. I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
RobinWillson 3 days ago
If you like Historical Fiction, you will enjoy this. Set in Pennsylvania near Philadelphia and Lancaster in 1763, it’s the third in a series about Amish settlers who emigrated from Germany. There is turmoil in the area after a group of Indians massacres northern settlers. A daughter, Betsy, who is betrothed to Hans from Stoney Ridge Amish church, is kidnapped and taken as a “tribute” replacement for one in their village who had been killed. Betsy is treated well after she arrives at the village. She is befriended by Caleb, who is the son of a Mennonite girl who had been kidnapped years back and was taken as a Shawnee bride. He can speak her language and takes time to help her acclimate. Even though Betsy doesn’t forget her home and people, she learns to endure the hardships and becomes close to the female leaders of the tribe, and Caleb. Tessa, the Preacher’s daughter, has always loved Hans and was very jealous of Betsy. The tragedy becomes a good thing for her since Hans draws close and proposes marriage. That is until Caleb brings Betsy back. This story is woven with jealousy, prejudice, racism and selfishness, also kindness, forgiveness, tolerance and strength of faith and spirit. Colonial settlers mostly left their country because of great difficulties, only to arrive in America and face some of the same as well as new challenges. Different ways of life, and the settlers’ greed for the land that was set aside for the Indians by treaty. This is about one part of that history and peaceful immigrants who are making a great contribution (like the Conestoga wagon) yet are torn apart by violence from within and without. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher from the Baker Publishing Group, Bethany - Netgalley book review bloggers program. 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.” http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html.
Mar-J 4 days ago
The Return is a magnificent, enthralling, powerful, insightful and historical researched to the fullest to captivate readers into the early years of the Amish settlers in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. I’ve never been disappointed in any of Suzanne Woods Fisher’s books with this one definitely being the best one and a lovely conclusion to her Amish Beginnings series. The characters are strong, filled with faith and determination as they are settling and moving forward in their communities, despite all the setbacks and attacks by Indians and others in 1763 – 64. My senses were on alert whether I was reading about an Indian attack or other attackers due to their strong feelings of revenge toward the Indians, traveling through the woods, the preparation of food and clothes, hunting, church services and reunion of lost loved ones. I was weeping at times in pain and sorrow and then the tears were happy ones due to the reunion of family members that had been separated during an attack. My heart broke for young Betsy and other secondary characters but their connection to individuals with faith, their own faith and beliefs kept them going during the dark hours of their lives. The design and finished product of the Conestoga Wagon added depth to this outstanding historical romance fiction. The Return shows the strong character of individuals with their faith, spirit and never failing love of God shining through. The scriptures interwoven throughout the story added to the characters’ lives and how they faced each valley or mountain top they were given. I’m sorry to see Amish Beginnings come to an end. I would appreciate seeing a new series with an update on Betsy, Willie, and Johnny Zook, Anna, Bairn, and Tessa Bauer, Caleb, and other major characters. Even if it’s another 25 years like The Return was from Anna’s Crossing. Suzanne Woods Fisher research is superb in the history of this era and the settling of the little church of Ixheim in the New World. Thank you to Suzanne Woods Fisher for all her dedication to historical research to make this one of the best Amish genre Christian historical/romance fiction series. I encourage Amish genre or historical genre readers to pick up a copy of the entire series to read. You'll appreciate the depth of this series filled with strong characters, action, history and the never ending sovereignty of God.
Kathae 4 days ago
Suzanne Woods Fisher has written a compelling story in this third installment of the Amish Beginnings series. I enjoyed walking through this story with beloved (or not) characters from the previous books in the series, however, someone who picks up this book will easily be able to read it as a stand-alone. Even in the beginning of the Amish in America, the importance of community was emphasized. From other books I have read about this period in our country's history, I think that I would have been fearful because of the unrest with the Indians. The calm strength of the Bauer family was inspirational. As a history fan, I also appreciated the history within the history of this early American tale. Fans of history, romance, and Amish will all appreciate story and the careful research that went into this book. I received an ARC of this book from the publisher, Revell, for review purposes. The thoughts expressed here are my own.
MarB1 5 days ago
A fabulous last book in the Amish Beginnings series! Fisher brings her characters alive and stays true to their character traits even when they have grown older; like it is the case in The Return. I am sad to say goodbye to these beloved characters. In The Return, I loved how we got a glimpse of life with the Indians. Sad how two different cultures would try to finish each other off. Fisher’s writing is exceptional and draws the reader in. Even if you do not care much for Amish fiction but you enjoy historical fiction, I think you might truly enjoy this series.
joyful334209 5 days ago
The Return is so enormously intriguing, abundantly absolutely adventurous, yet blissfully romantic and complicated yet contemplative. It's about poor Betsy taken by the Pennsylvanian Indians and taken in a very brutal harmful way. She was taken by and Indian and he kept her alive - but GOD is the one who actually kept her alive and her faith and trust in HIM is what kept her continually surviving while being held captive - but will she stay alive? On the other hand you have Hans who wants revenge very badly for what happened. He wants Betsy back but in her abs cense he turns to someone else - does he betray the love they had? Does he get his revenge? if he does and he gets Betsy back what happens with Hans and the other girl? That is - if Betsy is still alive. This book is so true to life and guys will love it just as much as girls - not all mushy - not all men and Indians - This is one of the best. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Publisher and Netgalley; all the opinions expressed in this review are all my own.
Lane_Hill_House 5 days ago
Tuesday, August 15, 2017 The Return by Suzanne Woods Fisher, © 2017 Amish Beginnings series, Book 3 My Review: I enjoyed this novel very much because it was true to historical events we might not be aware of in detail. So well written, the days opened and closed awaiting the next day. The story surrounds three brothers and their families continuing from the first two books. This may be read as a standalone, but you will enjoy the background in Suzanne Woods Fisher's Anna's Crossing, of Amish coming to the New World, and settling in Penn's Woods in The Newcomer. The beginnings of Stoney Ridge. I especially liked how each character's skill fit into the daily life of the whole. Community. Revolving around each other and fulfilled, because they did not stand alone. They were aided by Indian families nearby when they came; learning about the Three Sisters ~ beans, corn, and squash and the merging of their qualities. The beans fed the soil for the corn, and the squash vines provided shade for the roots of the corn. The Return, 241 I think of corn as a main staple for its many uses. All three interwoven to protect and nourish the whole. Very synonymous with our lives. We need each other. Not separate, merging skills and prayers. (1762-1764.) This story begins twenty-five years later than the last book in the series. There is encroaching into the Indians' hunting lands set aside by treaty early in the 1700s designating borders for settler lands. With the ensuing dangers brought on by both sides, threatened existence caused changed lives. Though taken as an exchange, Betsy Zook finds she is cared for in place of another. Revolts continued as those ensuring peace come against agitators proclaiming warring forces. ***Thank you to Revell Reads for sending a print copy of Suzanne Woods Fisher's The Return. This review was written in my own words. No other compensation was received.***
MaureenST 6 days ago
As I turned the final page of this three-book sage, I reflected on how things had changed and how the people we have come to know and love have matured and some have died, and others are just beginning their lives. What a journey the author has brought us on, and one that will linger for a long time, but alas it is saying goodbye, but with love at new lives starting and hope for the future. As sad as some of the things that happen in this story, and the fact that they are based on truth, if we could only change history, but we hope we learn from events, but somehow some things keep getting repeated. There are a few chuckles here, and some past perceptions are no longer viable, and we sure get to see some of the changes that have happened in the people that we have come to know. These books are not the ordinary Amish stories, of romance and mystery, but a look into how they arrived in American, and where they settled, and how they were able to cling to their beliefs and survive here. I will miss this family, as I feel I have become a part of, and can see the future in where we left off. I thank the author for the wonderful journey and a glimpse into the past. I received this book through Revell Publishing Book Bloggers tour, and was not required to give a positive review.
KrisAnderson_TAR 6 days ago
The Return by Suzanne Woods Fisher is the third book in An Amish Beginnings series. Readers are taken to Stoney Ridge in April 1763. Betsy Zook is in love with Hans Bauer and looks forward to his proposal of marriage. Then one night her life is changed when the Indians attack, kill her parents and take her hostage along with her brother, Johnny. Willie Zook hid in a hollow log and after the Indians depart, he runs to the nearest town. Hans wants to immediately set out to find Betsy, and it takes some work to convince him that would not be the best idea (due to the number of Indians and they have no idea where the hostages were taken). Betsy and the other hostages are taken into the mountains where they are given to various Indian tribes (in tribute). Hans rails against the Indians much to his families’ consternation. Tessa Bauer has cared for Hans for some time and is happy when he starts to pay attention to her. Hans is ready to move on with his life, but then Betsy is returned to them. Caleb, half Indian and half Mennonite, engineers Betsy’s escape and returns her to the Bauer family. Hans is thrilled to have Betsy back, but his quest for vengeance has not been extinguished. Betsy, Caleb, Hans, and Tessa have choices in front of them. Will they make the right decisions? What does the future hold for them? Join them on their journey in The Return. The Return is well-researched and contains good writing. I thought the characters were well-developed (thought out). The Return is an emotional novel (great sadness and loss). I have to say that The Return is my least favorite novel in An Amish Beginnings series. There is extreme violence and cruelty in the story that was disturbing to me. I am fully aware it is based on true events, but I do not like to read about the violence in such detail (one scene near the end was extremely off putting). I did find the information about Conestoga wagons (the creation, design) to be fascinating. My rating for The Return is 4 out of 5 stars. I highly recommend reading Anna’s Crossing and The Newcomer prior to The Return. Otherwise, it can be confusing with the various characters, their relationships, and how they came to America. Some of the themes or life lessons in the story are prejudice, revenge, racism, tolerance, jealousy, faith, love, and trusting God. I liked the phrases “triumph of human spirit” and “sovereignty of God in all things”. I was disappointed with the ending. It was unsatisfying and odd. It felt incomplete. The Christian element was handled beautifully.
TrixiO 6 days ago
Let me just say first of all, I love learning history in fiction, and Suzanne certainly knows how to bring it to real life in the pages of a book! Of course I've heard of the Indian raids so many farmers had to endure and this was almost like living through it. Though I wouldn't want to for real, it was a brutal and bloody time! I also loved learning about the Amish immigrants who settled and made a life for themselves. I hadn't read the first two books in the Amish Beginnings series, but I was in no way lost or confused. I was immediately drawn into the lives of each character and immersed in the story. There's lots of emotion in this one! My heart went out to Betsy for all she went through, and her faith never wavered. I especially liked Bairn, a strong leader with the wisdom of God in his heart. Romance was in the air and I loved seeing it play out between several characters. This has everything a person could ask for in a historical book packed with plenty of depth and emotion. A strong character driven plot to uncover with each page. It'll keep you glued and you don't want it to end. I sure hope there will be more in this series! I'll definitely be reading the first two so I can learn more about these characters who've quickly become friends.
Blooming-with-Books 6 days ago
Moving historical fiction that examines the cost of hate & love.... The Return An Amish Beginnings Novel #3 By Suzanne Fisher Woods The Return continues the story of the early days of Stoney Ridge and this chapter is set, for the majority of the story, in 1763. For those who enjoyed the story of Anna Konig and Bairn Bauer and the journey that brought them together aboard the Charming Nancy and to the New World, this is the third book in their story. Time has passed and not only have they married, they have a daughter Tessa, who is on the threshold of womanhood and all the anguish that that entails. Tessa Bauer has a decided personality that once set on a particular path is hard to detour to a better one. Fortunately or not she speaks her mind and often to the dismay of her mother and those around her Tessa Bauer has long sought the attentions of Hams Johann Bauer to no avail. Hans' heart has been captured by Betsy Zook, a new arrival to the New World and Pennsylvania. Tessa has an admirer whom as a child offended her and unfortunately for him, Tessa's good opinion (much like Mr. Darcy's) once lost is likely to be forever lost. But Martin Gingerich is not easily dissuaded to Tessa's annoyance. But when an Indian raid occurs, many who lived outside of the Stoney Ridge settlement are slaughtered or captured. And Betsy Zook is among those who are taken. Those of Stoney Ridge are shocked and saddened by the news and to Hans disgust are unwilling to take action against those who perpetrated this savage attack. The Return is a story told from two vastly different viewpoint - that of those in Stoney Ridge (particularly Tessa) and that of Betsy as she lives among a people who are much more than savages. But hatred is a two edged sword that thrusts both ways with tragic consequences often for those who are innocent. This was a world in turmoil as the old and new tried to establish a balance and protect what they believed was theirs. I really believe that this series Amish Beginnings is one that anyone who has a love of historical fiction would enjoy (even someone who is not into Amish fiction). There is a depth to this story that will make one stop and think. Hate and the thirst for vengeance is examined along with its tragic and costly ending - a timely book no matter what year it is. Of note - if you have not read the previous books in the series that is not a problem as one can quite easily read this book on its own without the backstory. Either way, this is an excellent book that should not be missed. I was provided a review copy of this book by the publisher Revell with no expectations of a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.
Christa4 7 days ago
Accolade, astounding and amazing historical detail, best describe The Return by Suzanne Woods Fisher. This book is the third and final book in the Amish Beginnings series. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading the entire series. This book can easily be classified as one of the best books I have ever read! Hans Bauer cannot wait to marry Betsy Zook, who is a fairly recent immigrant, with her family. Tessa Bauer also has her eyes on Hans Bauer, but realizes she is far too young to gain his attention. It seems he has also been devoted to Betsy since her family and her immigrated. After a tragic Indian attack, Betsy and her brother are taken prisoner. Will she ever see her beloved Hans again? Will she survive with the Indians? What of the other settlers? And where does the Conestoga wagon come into play? To find out the rest of Hans, Betsy and Tessa's story, you will definitely want to check this book out. It will not disappoint! Suzanne Woods Fisher is an exceptional author! Once you start reading, you will feel like you are right there with all of the families as new settlers in the year 1763. The author writes with such historical accuracy and detail. I loved reading the author's note at the end and finding out that quite a bit of the story is true...fascinating! Much research has gone into this historical gem! Suzanne keeps the story moving; there are surprises around every corner! This book is definitely one I will be rereading again soon! I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book from NetGalley and have given my honest opinion.
SouthernGalLovestoRead 7 days ago
Suzanne Woods Fisher has long been one of my favorite Amish authors. Her stories have such a welcoming quality, drawing you in for a nice visit with friends, new or old. The Return draws you back into the earliest days of Amish settlements in America. While many of the characters and events are fictional, they are based on historical events. The Amish settlers are just finding their way in the new world, working their way through challenges of the unknown, including how to get along with Indians and other settlers. Suzanne does an awesome job of filling her story with complex characters, showing both the good and bad sides of humanity. The Return is the third book in the Amish Beginnings series. It could work as a stand-alone, but knowing the back stories of the characters from the other books adds to the interest level. Thanks to Celebrate Lit for providing a copy of the book. I am happy to share my own thoughts in this review.
SouthernGalLovestoRead 7 days ago
Suzanne Woods Fisher has long been one of my favorite Amish authors. Her stories have such a welcoming quality, drawing you in for a nice visit with friends, new or old. The Return draws you back into the earliest days of Amish settlements in America. While many of the characters and events are fictional, they are based on historical events. The Amish settlers are just finding their way in the new world, working their way through challenges of the unknown, including how to get along with Indians and other settlers. Suzanne does an awesome job of filling her story with complex characters, showing both the good and bad sides of humanity. The Return is the third book in the Amish Beginnings series. It could work as a stand-alone, but knowing the back stories of the characters from the other books adds to the interest level. Thanks to Celebrate Lit for providing a copy of the book. I am happy to share my own thoughts in this review.
vics49548 7 days ago
In Book 3 of An Amish Beginnings Series, Author Suzanne Woods Fisher continues following the Amish community on the Pennsylvania frontier. I read this as a stand-alone and was able to follow it okay, so don’t hesitate to read it even if you haven’t read Books 1 and 2. The Return gives a lot of historical background to the settling of Amish communities in the early days of America. I found this information fascinating, and while it helped to explain many things but did not detract from the story line in any way. With mystery, intrigue, and romance, this book will appeal to many readers. I highly recommend it! I received a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to leave a review.
Bookworm_Debbie 8 days ago
An incredible historical Amish fiction book! In my mind this is part of a “true” series. You need to read these books in order to get the most enjoyment out of them. I love both Tessa Bauer and Betsy Zook. These young women are trying to figure out life when tragedy strikes and what they knew was turned upside down. I love the strong godly character that both of their fathers have displayed before them. Teaching them to hold on to the fact that God is with them no matter what happens. All of the characters are amazingly well developed. There are so many differing personalities it was great to see how they interacted with each other. I loved seeing how those that were in the previous books have matured. I was fascinated by the detailed descriptions given of some of the everyday aspects of life for these people. One that comes to mind is the way that metal rims were put on the wooden wagon wheels. I was also very interested in the description of training horses to pull wagons. I really enjoyed all of the information about the designing of the Conestoga wagon. I was heartbroken over what happened to Betsy and her family. The details of how the Indians treated her and the other captives was terrifying. I really did like the fact that she kept what she had been taught by her mother and father close to her heart.
conniet729 8 days ago
First and foremost, I love this author. I have read just about all of her books and have never met one I did not love. She has a grand way of crafting characters and pulling you into the story within a few pages. "The Return" is the third book in the (Amish Beginnings) series, I have read the other two and loved them. This one was just as good! I love how this series is based on true events - and it helps me understand some of the struggles that those before us went through. This book was a different viewpoint then what you read in school, but it was a welcomed viewpoint. I loved the characters, the setting, the storyline and SO MUCH MORE about this book. I have read the other books in the series, but this could be read as a standalone also. If you are a fan of Amish/Historical Fiction, you will LOVE this book. I was provided a copy of this book through the Celebrate Lit blogging program. All opinions are my own.
ReginaFujitani 9 days ago
The Return by Suzanne Woods Fisher Suzanne has always been one of my favorite Amish writers. She writes her stories with depth and inspiration that truly pulls you into the story. Her Amish history stories of a true story wove into fiction is no exception to this. I truly loved the entire series and am sad to see The Return be the last book in the series. The Early Settlers had a rough time, I cannot imagine the life and toil they had to make it from day to day. We have it so simple compared to back then. We don’t face the constant dangers that the settlers had to face. Our housing can be built in no time, whereas housing back then was a timeless effort of hard work and strenuous effort. The wagon that was built was a stunning marvel and what I didn’t realize, it was first made by the Amish! Betsy and Hans have a long road of healing to overcome but through faith and love and tenderness joy comes in the morning. Most notably forgiveness and an honest miracle. Anyone who loves historical fiction and Amish fiction will love this heartrending tale of faith, love, and hope! Disclosure statement: I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Netgalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.
jacksonmomLV 11 days ago
This final book of the Amish Beginnings series was a satisfying read. It stretched and challenged me - tragic violence, tender emotions, suspense, humor, history - it covered all the bases! I enjoyed seeing what had become of some of my favorite characters from the previous two novels: Bairn and Anna had a lively daughter, Tessa; impetuous Felix was now a widower with twin sons (just as wild as their dad). But the new characters were equally interesting: orphaned Betsy Zook and her brothers; Hans, the handsome and eligible blacksmith; diamond-in-the-rough, Rumpled Martin; many Indians from various tribes, but especially the half-blood, Caleb. Somehow Suzanne Woods Fisher gets just the right voice for each of her folks, and their personalities shine clearly in this historical Amish setting. One major theme in this book is prejudice, and how everyone has unexamined assumptions about other people. Differences between Europeans and Indians, Mennonites and Amish, Amish and "Englisch," even the roles of men and women - every character is challenged to reconsider the motives behind their thoughts and actions. Betsy Zook is the best illustration of this as she begins the book as an obedient Amish daughter who is forced to live as an Indian adoptee. Her time in the wilderness shows her another way to look at time and people and the material world. I found this very refreshing, and wish there was a fourth book to show how this is worked out in her adult life after her return to the Amish community. Another central theme is sacrificial love. We see this in Bairn's service to Christ and his church as bishop; Anna's gentle generosity and hospitality; Mrs. Zook's final admonishions to her children; Caleb's costly gifts to Betsy, and his always wanting what is best for her at his expense; even Hans' final act of unexpected kindness. It was humbling to think how each of these people chose love over selfishness - a timeless lesson. The hardships of pre-revolutionary life are displayed by Fisher's careful research and prose, yet the rich lives of her characters make her readers almost envy them in their simple lives. This is a great series for any reader who loves Amish OR historical fiction, and as good as the first two books were, the third is a perfect culmination. I love Fisher's dedication of centuries of Amish life in Stoney Ridge.
Mocha-with-Linda 12 days ago
Suzanne Woods Fisher closes out her Amish Beginnings series with another intriguing novel. I have enjoyed this series that depicts the early days of the Amish community in the colonies. This book stands alone but reading the first two books will reward the reader with a richer experience as there are a few references in this final book to earlier happenings. Fisher creates scenes that pulsate with emotion. I was capitvated - no pun intended! - by Betsy's situation and particularly liked how Fisher used it to mature her. I held my breath several times as I read, uncertain that the outcome would be what I hoped. Don't miss this book and series! Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book from Suzanne Woods Fisher and Baker/Revell Publishing. I was not required to write a 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.”
LJShuck 13 days ago
The Return is the third, and final, book in author Suzanne Woods Fisher’s Amish Beginnings Series; a series the author really didn’t expect to write. The first novel in the series, Anna’s Crossing, was originally written as a stand-a-lone novel, however it was so well received, that the Amish Beginnings Series, was born. Suzanne Woods Fisher has deep roots in the history of the state of Pennsylvania; this is from the dedication page, “To the Benedicts, my German Baptist family, who first came to the New World at the invitation of William Penn and settled in a corner of Penn’s Woods. Benedict means “good word”. You are all that and more.” Through her interest in her own family history, the author researched and travelled, gathering fascinating facts not only about her family history, but the state of PA. As a native of Pennsylvania myself, I was excited as I began to recognize surnames very familiar to me. Learning that many of those who settled in the Penn’s Woods area, and their descendants, travelled south toward what later became Franklin County brought awareness to how rich in history my home state and county truly are. The Return, as with the first two novels, is full of history, along with some of the most delightful people you’d ever meet. Set in the pre-Revolutionary era, enjoy a visit from Benjamin Franklin, a friend of the Bauer family. Learn how the first Conestoga wagon came to be; fashioned after a ship, the Conestoga was meant to carry heavy loads and prevent load shifting. Baird Bauer planned to build three different sizes of the wagon and named it after an Indian tribe that had befriended the settlers, showing them how to live in this new land. With the opening pages of Anna’s Crossing to the closing pages of The Return, I was enraptured by Anna and Bairn Bauer; Felix Bauer, Bairn’s free-spirited younger brother; Dorothea Bauer; the Mueller’s; the Zook’s, and the Gingerich families. Twenty-five years from Anna’s travel across the wide ocean to The New World, you don’t want to miss the last book the the Amish Beginnings series!
ARS8 13 days ago
In The Return, author Fisher’s third in her extraordinary series Amish Beginnings, we are once again reunited with Bairn and Anna and their family. Felix and Hans have both grown up as some years have passed, and Bairn is now the minister. This story focused on Anna and Bairn’s daughter, Tessa and newly arrived from Germany, Betsy. We are treated to Anna’s and Felix’s voices as well as the story is told from their viewpoints. As the story goes, we start with a bit of a tangled love mess. Tessa is in love with Hans and Hans is in love with Betsy. However, Betsy is taken captive during an Indian raid on her home and Hans has become a man driven by grief and determination to get her back. In the meantime, he and Tessa grow closer together. We the reader are taken with Betsy on her journey through captivity and the author writes vividly the emotions and feelings that young Betsy is experiencing. The ruthlessness of the massacre to the trading to any Indian family of sisters where she is made to feel at home and even loved. In her captivity Betsy meets Caleb, a half breed and a captive slave and forms a bond of friendship that changes her view of life. This story vividly portrayed how different and how difficult it was for the Amish, Mennonite, other settlers, and the Indian tribes to get along. The difficulty to reconcile their differences and live in peace when they viewed religion, rights, and land so differently. This was a read full of angst, grit, and determination as these young ladies tried to live in a harsh and difficult world that many times went against their beliefs. I appreciated the author’s notes on how much of this story was true and again I stand amazed at all the pioneers and what they endured in the wilderness of America. I received an e-copy of this book for free. I did purchase a paperback for my keeper shelf. I was not required to post a positive review and the views and opinions expressed are my own.