There's a good reason that Cheryl Reavis won the RITA award, 'Best Novel in 1989' for this book. The story is compelling and the author grabs your emotions from the first page. This book will stay with me for a long time. A CRIME OF THE HEART gives the reader an opportunity to observe the inner workings of the Pennsylvania Amish up close.
Tragedy has already visited this couple eleven years before this story begins. Quinn is one of the "English" -- non-Amish of Lancaster County. Her family was given unusual entree into the Amish community because the state required the Amish have a state-licensed teacher. Quinn's mother was local, qualified and willing to take the job.
Quinn always admired and then loved the eldest son of their neighboring Amish family, Adam Sauer. But the Plain People are a closed society, not willing to take converts. Eventually, Quinn and Adam do the unthinkable: They engage in a sexual affair and Quinn becomes pregnant. Quinn loves Adam so much that she makes decisions for both of them that have serious repercussions. She runs away and creates a new life in Philadelphia.
Eleven years later, Quinn is financially able to buy back the family farm and return. Her return sets off a chain-of-events that affect just about everyone in the community. This is an emotion-rich story.
FYI: Cheryl Reavis won an incredible four RITA's -- in 1989, 1991, 1993 and 2003. This book marked her first win.
Surely the old scandal about ousider Quinn Tyler and Amishman Adam Sauder was all but forgotten. No one knew the extent of their "sin." Quinn had borne Adam's child. World-weary and hungry for a simpler life, Quinn was going home to Lancaster County.
Only nothing was simple anymore. Adam still wanted her--though he damned his wanting. And Quinn yearned for him like the missing half of her soul. His people had accused her of an unforgivable crime and if she let Adam back into her heart, they'd find him guilty,too.
Iloved this book. It's a classic and somewhat hard to find.