A Place at Our Table by Amy Clipston is the first An Amish Homestead Novel. Kayla Dienner lives in Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania with her family. They are awakened in the middle of the night when lightning strikes their barn setting it on fire. James Riehl is one of the volunteer firefighters who responds and he is smitten with Kayla. Kayla, though, does not appreciate James encouraging her younger brother, Nathan in signing up for volunteer firefighting training. The Dienner family lost their oldest son, Simeon while he was serving as a volunteer. Kayla is attracted to James, but she is not sure she is willing to risk her heart again. After several chance encounters, James starts to court Kayla. Then a tragic accident happens upsetting James and his plans for his future. Kayla becomes frustrated and pushes James away. Is there a chance for these two to have their happily-ever-after?
A Place at Our Table is well-written and has a good pace. I thought the characters were well-constructed and realistic. I was immediately drawn into the story and it held my attention until the very last page. There is heartache, love, grief, anger, forgiveness, grace, fear, guilt and regret in A Place at Our Table. I also appreciated the messages regarding God's will, power of prayer, and His has plans for each of us. It is lovely to see how an Amish community comes together to help their neighbors. It is a shame there is not more of this in our world. I enjoyed the Amish volunteer firefighter angle. This is my first Amish novel with this theme (very unique). A Place at Our Table is a heartwarming as well as heartbreaking story. I look forward to reading the next An Amish Homestead Novel (Room on the Porch Swing) when it comes out in the spring.
Another good read from the talented hands of Mrs. Clipston. I was super excited when I read the blurb for this book. Being married to a firefighter, I'm always partial to books that include a firefighter or anything to do with rescuing. So, when I saw that this was not only another awesome Amish novel, but that it was about an Amish firefighter, I was instantly pulled to it. And, I was pleasantly surprised with this one. It was a good combination.
Meeting Jamie and Kayla was like meeting up with long ago friends. Their characters were instantly a part of me and I loved watching their story unfold. Dealing with pain and tragedy, these two hearts beat as one from their first meeting. Watching them grow in their feelings for each other was a refreshing start to a new series.
Like Kayla, when the sirens go, my heart skips a beat. I hold my breath until my husband is home safe and sound. The way Mrs. Clipston blends everyday life of firefighting with the plain, simple living of the Amish is a treat for sure!
This is definitely a 4 star, highly recommended read if you want something different. It's detailed and rich, and the characters don't stay characters for long. Each page turn brings you closer to the hearts of Kayla and Jamie, and I am excited to see what Mrs. Clipston has in store for us with book 2! Fantastic job!
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from BookLook Bloggers and was under no obligation to post a review, positive or negative.*