Johanna Ilg has lived her entire life in the village of Main Amana. As a part of the group of devout Christians who believe in a simple lifestyle and cooperative living, she has grown up in faithful service to God, but she has always longed to see the outside world. When she learns a troubling secret about her past, she wonders if she should remain in the only world she has ever known. Is Amana where she truly belongs?
Berta Shcumacher grew up living the privileged life of a doctor's daughter in Chicago, but suddenly her parents uproot her when they decide they want the simpler lifestyle that Amana offers. She resists the structure of the Amana villages and creates turmoil for not only her own family, but for others in the village. Can she ever be content with the simple life she will be forced to live in Amana?
I truly enjoyed reading this first book in the Daughters of Amana series. It gave me a glimpse into a community of believers that I had not heard of before reading the book. I like the historical fiction genre, and this book did not disappoint. I look forward to reading more in the series, and learning more about the Amana villages. I felt sorry for Johanna when she found out the secret about her past, but it was a reminder that even the devout are not perfect in their decisions and actions. In the end, all lies and secrets lead to more heartache and pain for all involved. As for Berta, I immediately felt she was a spoiled rotten child who needed to grow up. Through the course of the book she learned many lessons, including the love of God. I would recommend this book for anyone who enjoys historical fiction.
I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House publishers to review. The opinions expressed here are my own, and I was not compensated for my review.