Nurse Hal Among The Amish (Book 1)
Author Fay Risner
Home Health Nurse Hal Lindstrom is assigned Amish widower John Lapp. She offers to stay with his children while he is in the hospital. Fifteen year old Emma takes care of the household. Her two youngest brothers are handling the dairy operation. Hal soon realizes that Emma suffers from depression. Noah is withdrawn, and Daniel is so troubled he sleepwalks outside, looking for his dead mother. Drawn to this needy family, Hal discovers they have a secret swept under their proverbial Amish rag rug. The more she tries to help them the deeper she is sucked into the family’s problem. Finally, Emma makes Hal promise to stop trying to unravel the family’s tragic secret before it’s too late. Hal agrees. When her future happiness is at stake, she wishes she hadn’t, but a promise is a promise.
GEMS: Growing up in the Mid-West I loved the style and tone of the story and scenery. No purple pose or overly nostalgic descriptions, but rather a simple and honest portrayal of daily life. Each character is original and thoughtfully developed. I whole-heartedly enjoyed this Amish tale and believed the contrast between the Plain and English, but also how it is possible to live together with understanding, honesty and acceptance. The story is not overtly religious but rather focuses on the complexities of relationships and because of this drew me into the Lapp family.
FLAWS: This is not truly a flaw because I love how the author wrote the story, but if a reader is looking for more action or twists based on a typical ‘mystery’ experience, you may be slightly disappointed. The family secret isn’t so surprising, nor is it terribly shocking, but from the point of view of the Amish it is understandably shameful. I see this as a story about living up to a person’s word and good old-fashion romance and values.