Rose turned her back on the man she loves after he assisted the Englisch during World War II—only to discover she’s an Englischer herself.
Born in the midst of the hardships of The Great Depression, Rose grew up in Berlin, Ohio, in the arms of a loving Amish family. But she is overwhelmed by self-doubt when she learns that she was born Englisch and abandoned when her family moved West in search of work.
Was she meant to be Amish or would she have been better off growing up with her own kind—Englischers? When the man she loves leaves her behind, Rose is certain he left for good. Yet Rose discovers sometimes our greatest gifts are the ones we fear.
It feels weird to be reading Christmas fiction in September, but the 2013 Christmas book season has already begun. I don’t read (or review) many of these seasonal titles, but I’ve reviewed two other Tricia Goyer titles this year, and was given the opportunity to read and review this one as well. A Christmas Gift for Rose is technically a novella. It also combines the two themes Goyer often includes in her books: World War II, and the Amish. I’m not sure I’ve seen this scenario before, but it does highlight some of the issues Amish communities faced during the war. The concept of abandoned children during The Great Depression is one I’d come across before, notably in Ann Gabhart’s Angel Sister, which makes me wonder how common such acts of desperation were.
Rose is a difficult character to work out. She’s often contradictory in her actions. She pushes Jonathan away and then gets annoyed when he doesn’t come to visit. She welcomes his advances and allows him to hope and then decides that they can’t be together. I felt sorry for Jonathan, who wants nothing more than to marry her and live in their Amish community for the rest of their lives. She has Englisch neighbors, but when Rose learns of her birth family her biggest concern is that she was born Englisch. But who knows how we would act if we were in her shoes?
This is a lovely little story that can be read in an afternoon. Curl up with a steaming mug of cocoa, on a day when the weather is bad, and lose yourself in 1940s Ohio. Just have a box of Kleenex nearby, because the ending is beautiful.
Thank you to Litfuse, Zondervan, and Tricia Goyer for my free review copy of A Christmas Gift for Rose, which I received in exchange for an honest review.
Publication Date: 24 September 2013
Page Count: 192
Want to win my copy of A Christmas Gift for Rose?
The necessary stuff aka ‘the fine print’
- This contest is open to anyone in any country with a valid mailing address.
- Book will be mailed via USPS media mail with delivery confirmation if the winner is from the USA. Otherwise, the cheapest air mail method will be used but without the tracking.
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