Book Review: "Naomi's Gift" by Amy Clipston

Summary from Naomi's Gift re-introduces twenty-four-year-old Naomi King, who has been burned twice by love and has all but given up on marriage and children. As Christmas approaches---a time of family, faith, and hope for many others---Naomi is more certain than ever her life will be spent as an old maid, helping with the family's quilting business and taking care of her eight siblings. Then she meets Caleb, a young widower with a 7-year-old daughter, and her world is once again turned upside-down.

Naomi's story of romantic trial and error and youthful insecurities has universal appeal. Author Amy Clipston artfully paints a panorama of simple lives full of complex relationships, and she carefully explores cultural differences and human similarities, with inspirational results.

I can't believe that it's time to break out the Christmas books already. I mean technically summer JUST ended! I guess it's never too early though to get into the holiday spirit. And if you're into Amish books that have a romance in them this will be the type of combination that you will be looking forward to reading.

I felt horribly bad for Naomi when she tries to strike a friendship with Caleb and everyone keeps lambasting her for chasing the guy. They aren't concerned with her having her heart broken again. No, they are worried about how bad it's going to look for her to keep going after single guys. I was a bit appalled at how worrisome these Amish folks were on what other people were thinking. Caleb seems like a good guy and it's evident that he love his daughter very much. I was pleased to see him stand up to his sister.

I didn't find much Christmas in this story. It takes place in winter and it's around the holiday season but other than a few brief mentions, there's not too much of it in the actual story. I don't even think the Amish really participate in many Christmas-y activities to begin with so it doesn't really feel like there's much holiday joy in the air. Let's just say I didn't get excited for Christmas while reading this book. I also didn't really learn anything new about the Amish either in this book.

If you're into Amish books, you will probably enjoy this story. If you're looking for something to get you in the holiday spirit, this probably isn't the best book for that purpose. As a novella, it's a short story with the sole purpose of having two people come together to find love. Therefore it fulfills it's purpose with an Amish twist to it. If you're into that, you'll be very happy.

Naomi's Gift by Amy Clipston is published by Zondervan (2011)

This review copy was provided for a blog tour with the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance


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