Sunday, May 1, 2011
I can honestly say this is a truly positive review! This book was a true joy to read, as is very interesting and captivating. It drew me in from the very first sentence. I could not put this book down but only for the demands of life.
Ira, the author, was born into a very large Amish family of eleven children. His father is the editor of an Amish periodical that is subscribed to by just about every Amish household that exists. It is quite amazing how this periodical came to be and still exists today, which is explained in the book. As Ira meets strangers and tells them his name, he is recognized by other Amish people as his father’s son by his last name alone by recognition of his father’s name, and is often asked if he is ‘the writer’s son’? This is how popular and a good writer his father is. (Ira’s fathers’ talent for writing has rubbed off on his son, Ira, the author of this book, as you will see if you choose to read this author’s wonderfully written, descriptive, and talented book.) It shows how dedicated his father is to living and believing the Amish lifestyle is the only way to live and the only way of life. This creates a lot of tension between Ira and his father.
Ira tells the story of his life as he is confiding his deepest, darkest secrets in you. You feel like you are right there, sitting right next to him, listening to all his trials and tribulations of his Amish life. You feel what he feels as he grows and experiences all that he does. Is the Amish way of life the life he wants to live?
You also learn the real, nitty-gritty rules of Amish life, things you would not know unless you read this book. The rules all differ as to what is accepted and what is not accepted in many different ways; the differing communities, communities from county to county, from state to state. I was not aware these rules even existed the way they do. Again, the many different ways/rules of doing things and living that are or are not accepted, right down to the type of buggy wheels the Amish were allowed to use and even the clothing they wore. I learned so much about the Amish in this Non-Fiction book than in any fictional book I’ve ever read.
Ira, being from a very large Amish family, he pretty much had a normal childhood, until the closer he got to the age of 16, when the children were then considered adults. This is about the time when the young Amish youth, now adults, start to experiment different ways of living and doing things socially. Ira had been feeling uncomfortable and confused living the Amish way of life. He did not know or feel as if ‘this’ life was for him. He had many questions about his Faith, and exactly what it meant to him. He went on many journeys seeking answers to his questions several times. When he would come back home, he would try to readjust and live the Amish way again, but he just could not do it for any length of time. Something was missing from his life; he felt a void. One of the lengthier times he came back home he tried dating. He was continually trying to find just what that void was.
What did fill his void happened one day when he met a special man in another Amish community. This opened up a new way of thinking about faith for Ira
This book is quite a journey through Ira’s Amish life. Where he goes, what he does, what he tries to do and where he ends up. To pass this book up and not read it would truly be a great loss. I honestly cannot say enough good about this book. It’s truly a must-read!
This book was provided to me by Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for a review of my opinion of the book, either positive or negative.
Posted by Laurie Carlson at 12:25 PM