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26 February 2010

Book Review & Tour: Never Far From Home by Mary Ellis

Title: Never Far From Home
Author: Mary Ellis
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers
Publication Date: January 1, 2010
Paperback: 300 pages
ISBN: 978-0736927338
Genre: Fiction/Literature/Amish/Christian


From the Publisher

Mary Ellis follows her captivating Widow’s Hope with a new story from the heart of Holmes County, Ohio. In Never Far From Home, fifteen–year–old Emma Miller finishes school, starts her own wool business, and is longing for someone to court. When the object of her affection is a handsome English sheep farmer, with a fast truck and modern methods, her deacon father, Simon, knows he has more than the farm alliance to worry about.

Emma isn’t the only one with longings in Holmes County. Her aunt Hannah wants a baby and her uncle Seth hopes he’ll reap financial rewards when he takes a risk with his harvest. But are these the dreams God has for this Amish family? With engaging interactions and thoughtful characters, Ellis weaves a story about waiting for God’s timing and discovering that the dreams planted close to home can grow a lasting harvest of hope and love.

My Review:

Never Far From Home
is the second book in The Miller Family Series by Mary Ellis, and is a rather charming novel about Amish families and life along with their joys and troubles. Emma Miller has recently turned 16 and she has informed her parents she fully intends to take her year of Rumschpringe, much to the dismay of Simon and Julia. Emma's aunt Hannah has noticed her young niece pining after a young sheep farmer, the problem is James Davis is an Englischer. Hannah barely has time to worry too much about her niece since she is having troubles in her own home. Her husband Seth took all of her savings and invested the money without discussing his plans with Hannah. Hannah is struggling to learn to give up her independence, independence she had to learn after her first husband passed away. While Hannah and Seth work on their relationship, Emma is learning to deal with her feelings, her new marriage and new daughter. Although the characters are plentiful, I did not particularly care for them, possibly because I did not read the first novel in the series, A Widow's Hope. While I was easily able to follow the story, it was almost too easy and I felt there lacked a certain depth, which I might have found had I read A Widow's Hope first, since characters usually grow with a series. The story is well written and the reader is quickly drawn into the various trials and tribulations of the individuals as well as the families. With an underlying theme of all things are possible with faith, Never Far From Home is an excellent novel to curl up with for a wholesome afternoon of reading.

About the Author

Mary Ellis grew up close to the eastern Ohio Amish Community, Geauga County, where her parents often took her to farmers’ markets and woodworking fairs. She and her husband now live in Medina County, close to the largest population of Amish in the country. They often take weekend trips to purchase produce, meet Amish families, and enjoy a simple way of life.
More about Mary Ellis here.

I received a complimentary copy of Never Far From Home by Mary Ellis from
Glass Road PR. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of aforementioned novel.


1 comment:

Dr. Bill (William L.) Smith said...

Thank you for providing your honest review of the book. It does sound like an interesting series.

Bill ;-)

Hope you'll check out my book giveaway: