Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Caregiver

Two lives converge one stormy night on a train headed to Cleveland.

Lucy is traveling by herself via train to Jacob's Crossing to help care for her cousin Mattie, recently diagnosed with breast cancer. Trying to overcome the sudden death of her husband, she's glad to get away and focus on someone else for a while.

The only other Amish people on the train are Calvin Weaver and his little sister, Katie. When their train breaks down outside of Cleveland, Calvin and Lucy band together to face the outside world. But Calvin also carries the weight of past hurts. When an altercation brings both their wounds to light, they question whether they can trust each other.

Once in Jacob's Crossing, Lucy is occupied with caring for Mattie, while Calvin does his best to run his family's farm. But they can't stop thinking about those special hours spent together. Will the bond they formed last? And will Lucy and Calvin be able to put away the pain in their pasts to recognize the happiness that is suddenly in their grasp?

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

Book Review

After an onslaught of Amish books recently, I wasn't overly excited to read this one.   However, this book had one thing going for it.   The author.  Shelley Shepard Gray.   Shelley writes books centered within the Amish community that aren't weighted.    What I mean by that is that each book is unique and doesn't feel like the same story just written in the same way.     The Amish is such a rigidly traditional society that finding a new way to write a story seems to be a challenge for some authors.     Not so for Shelley.    

The Caregiver is the first book in Shelley's latest series, Family of Honor.     The next two books in the series will be The Protector and The Survivor.    After reading this first book, I have my hopes regarding who these books will be centered around, but I guess I will just have to see.

The Caregiver centers around a young woman, Lucy.    After suffering through an abusive marriage, she has come to stay with her cousin who is enduring chemotherapy treatments.     Reading this was tough for me as my son's best friend is going through chemotherapy treatments right now as well.     Seeing some of Mattie's doubts and fears written out on paper are some of the very thoughts and fears that my son's sweet friend are having to deal with right now.     There are many tear stained pages, as well as many prayer covered pages, throughout this book.      Mattie's story is one that wasn't completely brought to an end and is one that I hope will be covered in the book The Survivor.

Lucy also has to deal with her own fears and insecurities regarding relationships.    God opens the door for her to love again through a friendship she makes with neighbor of Mattie's, Calvin.     

The Caregiver is an amazing story of what God can do when we allow our heart to be repaired by Him.    

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