Guest Review from Lori Parrish for Gladden the Heart

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About the Book

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Book title: Gladden the Heart

Author: Olivia Newport

Release date: July 1, 2017

Genre: Historical Amish

“When you have experienced the Holy Ghost as I have, you would see that it is difficult to turn back.”

When the lively fervor of nineteenth century revivalism endangers the staid customs of the Amish community in the lush but rugged Kishacoquillas Valley of central Pennsylvania in 1847, the Amish church must deal with a divisive question: What is a genuine spiritual experience?

The question turns personal when Susanna’s beloved cousin Noah begins preaching while under trances and even though he is not a minister he gives long sermons that attract increasing attention. Curious, she helps to keep Noah safe during his trances. At the same time Adam, Susanna’s intended, feels pressure from the bishop to speak out against the ways of revivalism.

Susanna and Adam are pushed to opposite sides of a controversy that threatens their traditional Amish faith.. Now they must grapple with whether love is possible…even if they come to different conclusions.

When Noah goes missing at a time of day when he often preaches while asleep, circumstances thrust community members with divergent opinions into a crisis that demands they recognize the humanity they share regardless of beliefs. But can strong-held opinions be softened by the truths that shape their lives?

Guest Review from Lori Parrish

I enjoyed this book very much!! I love reading the history of the Amish and how they came to this country just like the English did for various reasons. I think what drew me to this particular book was at a time when the revival meetings started. I have attended a few rivals myself and I love them. I liked how they all came together to help the one in need. I didn’t like however how some people treated an individual just because he was “different”.

I think Gladden the Heart means to accept Jesus in your heart no matter who does the preaching. Whoever accepts Jesus will have eternal life and joy will shine through  to whomever will meet up with you. I also love the friendship between Amish and English even tho the Amish want to set themselves from the world. Some people are just set in their ways no matter how much we try to help or change them.

Veronica Susanna’s mother was afraid of the influence that the preaching that went on. I’m glad for Susanna’s father who was sturdy and firm in his decision making and on whom to trust. I like nosy Timothy too. If I had a brother I’d want him to be just like Timothy. There were some things in the book that made me smile and laugh too. I also held my breath in certain places.  I didn’t want anything to happen to my favorite person!

If I had an uncle I’d want to be just like Noah. I thought Noah was cool for an Amish man. Olivia will be added to my list of favorite authors because I enjoy her stories. I wanted to add that I loved the little authors note at the end of the book. I think it’s good to know how the author gets ideas for their stories and knowing there. is truth mixed in with fiction.  This is why I love fiction.

I received this book for free. These are my own words and no compensations were received.

About the Author

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Olivia Newport’s novels twist through time to discover where faith and passions meet. She chases joy in Colorado at the foot of the Rockies, where daylilies grow as tall as she is. Her books include the Avenue of Dreams series set in 1890s Chicago; the Valley of Choice series, which intertwines contemporary and historical Amish stories; the historical Amish Turns of Time series; and Hidden Falls, a warm, contemporary, small-town novel.

Guest Post from Olivia Newport

Sleepy Sundays

Now don’t laugh, but my guess is that if you looked around your church on any given Sunday morning, you’d see somebody sleeping. It might be an infant or toddler whose nap time collides with the worship time resting in a parent’s arms, or it might be a senior citizen who has perfected the art of dozing in an upright position.

What you don’t expect is that the person sleeping will be the preacher.

I’ve always been interested in church history. I even read a magazine called Christian History on a regular basis and consider it pleasure reading. In my ambling through church history, I came across a notation about “sleeping preachers” in the nineteenth century in various denominations, including the Amish. The accounts suggested that individuals who were not ministers would fall unconscious, wake up to preach for lengthy periods, sleep again, and have no recollection of their actions.

Could this possibly be true? Or a giant hoax? What’s a genuine spiritual experience, and what do we do when don’t agree on how to answer that question? Let’s face it, even now, 150 years later, we still don’t quite know what to do with our varying traditions when we don’t agree on how to answer that question.

I knew I had the makings of a story. Gladden the Heart travels back to 1847 and wrestles with these questions. When a divided community faces a life-or-death situation, they must respond to a crisis that challenges them to look past their differences. But can strong-held opinions be softened by the truths that shape their lives?

Gladden the Heart is the fifth story in Olivia Newport’s Amish Turns of Time series of historical Amish novels. Olivia chases joy in Colorado at the foot of the Rockies, where daylilies grow as tall as she is.

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Olivia is giving away a Grand Prize that consists of:
All five books in the Amish Turns of Time series (http://www.olivianewport.com/amish-turns-of-time/)
PLUS
Bonus: All three books in the Valley of Choice series (http://www.olivianewport.com/valley-of-choice/)
PLUS
$25 Amazon Gift Card!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/bc59

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