My rating: 5 stars / It was amazing
Veronica Fisher knows how lucky she is to be marrying her best friend. Seth Lapp is kind, hardworking, and handsome—but most importantly, he loves Veronica.
When an accident on the job steals Seth away from her, a heartbroken Veronica is certain she will never love—or be loved—again. Yet when she discovers a batch of forgotten recipes and opens a bake stand to sell her Mammi’s raspberry pies, Veronica picks up a regular customer who gives her heart pause.
Jason Huyard was with Seth when he lost his life—a memory that haunts him still. So when he seeks out the grieving fiancée to convey his condolences, the last thing he expects—or wants—is to fall in love. Nonetheless, Jason soon finds himself visiting Veronica’s bake stand every week . . . and it’s for more than the raspberry pies.
Now, as Veronica’s heart thaws, Jason can’t bring himself to tell her he was there when Seth died. Can he ever reveal where he was on the day her life derailed? Or will his secret rob them of the second chance at love they both want?
I recently had an unexpected opportunity to visit Lancaster county in Pennsylvania and knew that I had to read this book while the vibe of the Amish community was still fresh in my mind. It completely enhanced my reading experience being able to acutely picture the setting. What really made the book stand out to me though was the high level of emotion in the characters and the author's skillful way of enabling me to connect with their feelings during the story. Victoria's grief was palpable and her realistic process of dealing with it. I loved the support of her parents and sisters, it gave the book a heartwarming foundation even though there is plenty of angst as Victoria and Jason navigate their way through the highs and lows of new love. The recipe for raspberry pie that Victoria unearths from a forgotten hope chest brings purpose to her days and happiness as she reconnects with the community. The wisdom she finds in an old letter her grandmother had written helps her find peace and understanding in a time of confusion. It was interesting to see Jason reach out to various family and friends in his trials, it showed how truly humble he was to seek the advice of those who could help. There is definitely a strong sense of family and community in this series.
(Thank you to Zondervan Publishing for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review)