Tuesday, February 24, 2015

REVIEW of "Keys of Heaven"

Review of Keys of Heaven

by Adina Senft 


Sarah Yoder is learning to help the people in her Amish community as aDokterfraa, creating teas and tinctures using the herbs she grows. But her latest patient seems to have a problem that can't be resolved with anything in Sarah's garden-a woman who, in Sarah's mind, would flourish anywhere but in the place she lives. Meanwhile, Sarah's relatives have decided to do a little matchmaking between her and a visiting Amish man. He would make a wonderful husband, and she knows she should be willing for God to show her His choice of partner...and not allow her friendship with her neighbor, Henry Byler, to grow into anything more.

Henry has seen some success as a potter since a major store commissioned a line of his work for their catalog. The trouble is that they want to market him as Amish. Though he was raised in the faith and now lives in Amish country, he has never joined church-and doesn't plan to, either. Which means that, despite the attraction between them, he must keep his distance from Sarah. But what happens when Sarah and Henry are called upon to help a runaway whose family is too worldly to see how lost their son has become? The plant Sarah calls Keys of Heaven may be able to grow in impossible places, but it's not so easy for people to find their own place. Which means it's quite a temptation for her to take matters into her own hands......
MY REVIEW:  Chamomile tea is one of my stress and anxiety relievers.   I enjoyed reading of Sarah and the herbal teas and tinctures she creates to help the Amish community and her own family.  I learned a great deal about some new natural remedies that I did not know about previously.  As a retired teacher and lover of crafts and arts, I read with interest as the young English teenager, Eric, explored his desire to create pottery with Henry, who is formerly Amish and does not intend to return to the Amish faith.
        There were a great many relationships and storylines going on in this book and a few times, I had to backtrack and reread portions of the book to figure out who was being featured at a given time.  Within these relationships, there were many romances and conflicts occurring and it kept me hopping to keep up.   I really enjoyed the book though and appreciate the number of lessons learned by several of the characters.   There were several lessons of faith learned as characters experienced turmoils and trials of life.   
        I rate this book 4 stars and highly recommend it to readers.   I think this book would also be of particular interest to teenagers, even preteens would find it enjoyable.  
       I received a copy of this book from netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

About the Author:
Adina Senft
Adina Senft grew up in a plain house church, where she was often asked by outsiders if she was Amish (the answer was no), she made her own clothes, and she perfected the art of the French braid. She holds an M.F.A. in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University in Pennsylvania, where she teaches as adjunct faculty. 

Writing as Shelley Bates, she was the winner of RWA’s RITA Award for Best Inspirational Novel in 2005, a finalist for that award in 2006, and, writing as Shelley Adina, was a Christy Award finalist in 2009. Three of her books have shortlisted for the American Christian Fiction Writers’ Carol Award for book of the year. Of her fiction, publisher and industry blogger W. Terry Whalin has said, “Readers will be lost in the vivid world that [she] paints with incredible detail and masterful storytelling.” 

A transplanted Canadian, Adina returns there annually to have her accent calibrated. Between books, she enjoys traveling with her husband, playing the piano and Celtic harp, and spoiling her flock of rescued chickens. These days, she makes period costumes and only puts up her hair for historical events and fun.

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