Sunday, May 01, 2011

The Judgment

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Judgment
Bethany House (April 5, 2011)
Beverly Lewis


Not until her own children were well into middle school did Bev seek to publish her work, first in magazines such as Highlights for Children, Dolphin Log, and Guideposts for Kids. Her first book followed in 1993—Mountain Bikes and Garbanzo Beans—presently retitled Big Bad Beans (book #22 in the popular CUL-DE-SAC KIDS series of chapter books—see list of Bev's children's books).

Beverly's first venture into adult fiction is the best-selling trilogy, THE HERITAGE OF LANCASTER COUNTY, including The Shunning, a suspenseful saga of Katie Lapp, a young Amish woman drawn to the modern world by secrets from her past. The book is loosely based on the author's maternal grandmother, Ada Ranck Buchwalter, who left her Old Order Mennonite upbringing to marry a Bible College student. One Amish-country newspaper claimed Beverly's work to be "a primer on Lancaster County folklore" and offers "an insider's view of Amish life."

Booksellers across the country, and around the world, have spread the word of Bev's tender tales of Plain country life. A clerk in a Virginia bookstore wrote, "Beverly's books have a compelling freshness and spark. You just don't run across writing like that every day. I hope she'll keep writing stories about the Plain people for a long, long time."

A member of the National League of American Pen Women, as well as a Distinguished Alumnus of Evangel University, Lewis has written over 80 books for children, youth, and adults, many of them award-winning. She and her husband, David, make their home in Colorado, where they enjoy hiking, biking, and playing with their three grandchildren. They are also avid musicians and fiction "book worms."


Rose Kauffman is engaged to Silas Good, a well-liked Amish fellow, so why does she still pine for Nick Franco, the former foster son of the bishop? Especially now that Nick has left the Amish community under a cloud of suspicion after the death of the bishop's biological son? Will Rose marry Silas, even while struggling with romantic feelings for Nick? Meanwhile, Rose's older sister, Hen, has returned to live at her parents' farm with her young daughter. Hen and her modern husband, Brandon, are separated by mutual agreement, although he is threatening to sue for custody of their daughter if Hen does not return soon. Will the judge rule in Brandon's favor? Is there any way Hen can reestablish her place among the People without sacrificing her marriage?

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Judgment, go HERE

Watch the book trailer:

The Judgment by Beverly Lewis is the second book in the Rose Trilogy. Rose Kauffman's Amish community is still recovering from the tragic death of Bishop Aaron Petersheim's son, Christian and foster son Nick Franco's running away. Rose's friendship with Nick makes her one of the few people not blaming Nick for Christian's death, but she's trying to focus on her new engagement to Silas Good. Elder sister Hen has returned home to live with her daughter Mattie Sue leaving her Englischer husband, Brandon, behind. But he's furious over Hen's seeming betrayal and is beginning to file for divorce and full custody of Mattie Sue. Hen and Rose's mother Emma is still battling crippling pain from a decade old back injury, and the suffering seems to be leading her toward death. This historical Amish story, it takes place in 1985, is thoroughly compelling. Lewis shows that the Amish face the same problems the rest of us do: loving the wrong person, the death of a child, facing tragedy and pain, divorce and broken marriage. The difference is that these characters do it all while trying to remain within the will of God, making their decisions complex and often incredibly difficult. Hen is a bit wishy-washy, but she comes across as very real. How would an Amish woman who has married an Englisch man in haste, deal with the natural differences that arise in marriage? How can she respect his authority as her husband and trust in God's will to be done when threatened with the loss of her daughter? Rose is also torn, between a good man she should love and a tormented man she shouldn't. Rose learns some lessons and gains maturity in this book as she really starts to evaluate her own feelings and acknowledge them. I was so sad to come to the last page of this book; I wasn't ready to say good-bye to the characters within. This just may be Lewis' finest work.