| From RomanceJunkies.com|
Christine Bender Hershberger is the middle sister and is a widow with two teenage daughters who has brought her dairy cows to help make money for their new home.
Rosetta Bender is the youngest sister and is a maiden who has taken care of their parents until their passing. She has never been married and plans to open the lodge to any single women of Amish or Mennonite faith who are in need of a place to live without a man's iron hand over them.
Preacher Amos has moved with the sisters from their former community after they all sold their farms and left without the Bishop's blessings. Partly because Bishop Chupp had refused to let English investigators try to find out what caused the fire that killed Christine's husband. Preacher Amos always had an eye for Mattie to become his next wife, but Mattie is against marrying again after surviving a physically abusive husband before his death.
Deborah Peterscheim, Noah's ex-fiancé, has come to Promise Lodge after surviving the abuse from Bishop Chupp's son Isaac. Then her father cast her out of his house for suspecting her of promiscuity. She comes to the lodge because she has nowhere else to go and she realizes what a fool she was for breaking off her engagement with Noah. Deborah is heartbroken because she has caused her family heartache but doesn't know how she can fix it. Seeing Noah again when she first gets to the lodge makes her realize how much she still loves him. She asks for his forgiveness but doesn't know if she will get it. When the sisters and the girls see Deborah they are overjoyed as they have been missing all of their friends. Deborah has a bruise in the shape of a handprint on her neck and they all wonder how she received it, but will wait until Deborah wants to explain.
Noah is afraid to trust in his feelings for Deborah and her asking for forgiveness because of the heartache he has endured over her betrayal. He is curious about what happened to bring Deborah to them, but will wait until later to confront her.
Everyone is happy to see Deborah and they want all the news from home. She tells them about the barn at the Bender homestead burning down. It wasn't an accident and is one of the reasons she has come to them. The sisters and their families are glad they have left the old community to keep them all safe.
Rosetta is writing weekly articles for their local Amish paper and letters are coming in from the folks curious to find out more information on the new community.
This novel is one of beginnings, old loves and the building of a community where the Old Order way of treating women like property and abusing them when the man wants to, will not be tolerated. As the days go by and more work is finished to bring the property back to its former glory, the story of building new homes for the sisters and their families to help heal the old hurts. Young love is in bloom again and the promise of a glorious future begins. I loved this story and cannot wait for more books in this series.
I give PROMISE LODGE 5 Blue Ribbons on Romance Junkies' website because the true meaning of a famiy's love for one another is told so beautifully and makes you want to be a part of it.
© Copyright 2003 by RomanceJunkies.com