Saturday, December 24, 2011

To Love And To Cherish-Kelly Irvin

To Love And To Cherish

Kelly Irvin

Harvest House, Feb 1 2012, $13.99

ISBN: 9780736943710

In Bliss Creek, eighteen year old Catherine Shirack works at her family’s stand when her Mudder waves from the buggy. Farmer Bob Cramer comes around the road as Catherine’s Dad slows down to make a turn. The farmer’s truck plows into the Shirack vehicle. Catherine watches in horror as her parents die.

The oldest son Luke the blacksmith, his wife Leah and their children return to the family farm. His sister twenty four year old Emma is unable to forgive Bob for the deaths of her parents unlike a forgiving Luke. Emma’s former beau Carl Freiling who left her and their Amish community four years ago wants a second chance with her. Also interested in Emma is widower Thomas Brennaman, a single dad with a young child. Emma’s nineteen year old sister Annie has been rejected by her beau Robert and their seventeen years old brother Josiah has a New Order Mennonite girlfriend in Wichita but now suffers with remorse. Catherine is depressed while teenager Mark handles increase responsibility well and the five year old twins (Lillie and Mary) struggle with taking orders from Leah instead of Mudder.

The first Bliss Creek Amish family drama is a terrific tale as each member of the Shirack extended clan comes across fully developed with different issues though Emma is the star. Whereas Luke adapts seemingly effortlessly to his new patriarch role by concealing his fears, Catherine suffers from severe depression and Emma from doubt as “His will be done!” does not answer her question of why good people. readers will appreciate this strong Amish family drama as the eight offspring grieve and cope differently the loss of their parents in a tragic accident.

Harriet Klausner

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