Wonderful touching book, I cried almost all the way through it.
THIS SIDE OF HEAVEN:
LOVE FINDS YOU…
This is another touching read that gave me goosebumps at the Hollywood worthy finale.
In the City at Christmas is a great way to begin the Christmas Season. The book is a love story with the magic of Christmas in NYC! If you cant be there, reading this book will make you feel as though you are. Both authors capture the spirit of Christmas. It will be a yearly tradition for me!
ALL GOD'S CHILDREN:
"In this first installment of the Peacemakers trilogy, Schmidt introduces protagonist Beth Bridgewater. An American Quaker, Beth is a pacifist, as are the aunt and uncle she lives with in Nazi Germany in the early 1940s. Beth’s uncle, a professor at the university in Munich, opens up the family’s attic room to a former student, Josef Buch. Josef, the son of a high-ranking Gestapo agent, has returned from the front to finish his medical studies, but the family questions his reasons for wanting to live with them. As Uncle Franz and Beth begin to trust Josef, the three become involved in antigovernment covert activities that, while solidifying Beth and Josef’s relationship, endanger the entire family. The activities of the White Rose resistance group, as well as the prisoner uprising at the Sobibor concentration camp, are more than simple historical context. Schmidt seamlessly integrates these actual events, and the courageous real-life individuals who fought against Hitler’s regime, with her fictional characters and their story, to produce a strong tale of hope and love in the face of insurmountable obstacles."
~ Publisher's Weekly
"...an exceptionally well-written story that shows the atrocities of war...the writing is vivid...in this heart-wrenching story of love, forgiveness and perseverance."
~ Romantic Times, 4 Stars
5.0 out of 5 stars A good history lesson., November 8, 2013
By Karen "Karen"
As a history teacher, I am always frustrated when I read a book of "historical" fiction and the author either has done little research or he or she plays loose with the facts. This is not the case with All God's Children. This is a well researched book on life in Germany during WWII. We are introduced to a Quaker family, trying to love their neighbors and stay out of the current conflict. When the family takes in a border, who is a student at the University, they begin to be drawn into the conflict. This border is also a commissioned officer in the German army with a father who is a high government official. Among the members of the Quaker family is Beth, an American, who has spent the last eight years caring for her ailing aunt and assisting with the raising of her lively young cousin. When confronted with the evil taking place within their country, each of them must make a decision as to how they will serve a higher calling.
The work of the German dissenters in the White Rose was so admirable. I also had to look up the little known event of the escape from Sobibor. Thank you Anna Schmidt for teaching me a new lesson in history. This is the first of a trilogy. I am anxiously looking forward to the further story of Beth and Josef, Franz and his family.
Exceptional WWII story. I LOVED it., October 8, 2013
I was actually sort of shocked not to see hundreds of reviews for this novel! It really is wonderful and I mean it. Definitely a stand out. For one thing, it has exceptional historical research and authenticity. I noticed the White Rose Society did a reivew in which they mentioned that Schmidt takes advantage of two basic facts associated with the history of the White Rose. "First, that the professors in the Natural Sciences department and the culture of medical studies at the university in Munich were critical to the thought processes of those students. Sophie Scholl (though not a medical student) majored in Natural Sciences, enrolling in courses taught by professors like Sommerfeld and Gerlach, who had exercised a bit of backbone and did not always toe the Party line.
The second White Rose "gap" that Schmidt exploits centers on the nameless faces of the group. Even Gisela Schertling, who betrayed fringe of the fringe participants in her damning interrogations on March 31 and April 2, 1943, was unable to recall all the names. Schmidt uses these two Givens to create a fascinating fictional universe. The male protagonist is a medical student, son of a Gestapo agent, who doubts his father's politics (or does he?) and moves in with the family of a professor of Natural Science. That professor and his American niece (shades of Mildred Fish Harnack, since the niece hails from Wisconsin) happen to be Quakers".
How many novels can elicit this kind of praise from real historians? Or claim to have such accuracy in details? I didn't expect to feel I was learning something I did not already know about WWII but I did. Schmidt's Quaker point of view about the war is also authentic. As a reader I felt truly immersed in this world and the challenges these young lovers face. This is fiction at its finest, embodying truths of the human heart and soul. I only hope more readers discover this wonderful novel.
different slant on Germany in WWII, November 7, 2013
The novel is the first of three concerning the characters we meet in this book. Beth, an American of German descent, is in Munich living with and helping her German aunt, uncle and cousin. She is caught up in the horror of living in Nazi Germany, and as an American, she is an enemy of the state. This was a fascinating picture of the life of good, decent Germans who wanted to bring their homeland back to prewar values and the risks they took to try to do the right thing at a very wrong time. We learn a great deal about Beth and her Quaker faith as well as underground resistance within Germany. There are great characters, lots of suspense and intrigue, heroism and romance. Great story that makes me eager to read the next volume to be released in Spring of 2014.
A great christian read, November 6, 2013
Anna Schmidt has a strong writing style and I enjoyed this book very much. I hope to read the rest of the books in the trilogy. I had no idea that the Religious Society of Friends existed or were Quakers who rescued many Germans during the war with Germany.
Beth, one of the main characters is a Quaker activist. Her passion is helping other people to the extent that she puts her on life in peril. She lives with her Aunt and Uncle in Munich. She is a Godly woman.
Josef another main character is a patriotic German putting his faith in his country. He is also a medical student. His father is a high ranking government official in the Gestapo.
I would suggest you read their story; how they helped each other, helped other people and the romance between them.
There is drama, suspense, danger, strength and romance in this novel.
Even though this is a fictional story, I learned more about how horrible the people especially the Jews were treated.
A good Christian read.
Great WWII love story with depth, accuracy, and a new perspective., October 8, 2013
By AudentiaGlow (PDX)
After reading some of the other reviews, I have to agree that I was surprised to see so few reviews, so I had to leave praise for this great read! Perhaps that is because this book is still new. With so many novels out there about WWII, I didn't expect such a fresh and intriguing take on this time in history, but this story (although fiction) taught me new historical insights as well as learning more about the Quaker faith. The depth of the story pulled me in.
Some other reviewers are asking why the heroine, Beth, remained in Germany even after war broke-out. This is where the author weaves in a nice touch about faith and selfless service through Beth's Quaker beliefs. She believes in non-violence, but is compelled to help however she can. This makes the heroine all the more admirable that she stayed during such harrowing and upsetting times instead of leaving for American when she could have. The added intrigue, suspense, and romance between Beth and the German medical student Josef(with a high-ranking German government official father) and wondering what was going to develop kept me turning pages. I love fiction that includes accurate historical insight. This was a delight to read and I highly recommend it!
"Anna Schmidt has chosen an unusual location to begin a love story: Mineral Point, Wisconsin, 1848, smack in the middle of the lead mines (aka "badger country").
"Fresh off the boat from Cornwall, Dylan Tremaine has two resources when he arrives in Mineral Point: a big, strong body, and a quick, clever brain. He's going to get rich no matter what, no matter how. And then he meets, Caitlin Pearce, a school marm with a rich, influential father and an independent streak so strong that the town accepts her choice not to marry. On a bet he can get her to go on a date with him, Dylan pursues her under the pretense he needs to learn to read.
"Watching Dylan and Caitlin fall in love and battle over who is boss makes the story fly along. There are hitches, of course. And misunderstandings. And promises. And ruses. And, then there's the Gold Rush. I smile just remembering these wonderful characters."
~ A.Y. Stratton, author of BURIED HEART
A MOTHER'S PROMISE
Schmidt has written a delightful book, full of real life issues. I give it 5 out of 5 stars.
It is easy to connect with the emotional storyline in the latest Women of Pinecraft story, filled with characters who truly want to help others but are flawed nonetheless. In addition to entertaining the reader, Schmidt also educates them on a number of things (leukemia, bullying and the challenges of being different).
~ Leslie L. McKee, Romantic Times, 4 Stars
A GROOM FOR GRETA
A charming Amish read.
I wish I could give more stars!! I LOVED this book and can not believe I have not read any others by this author. I plan to rectify this soon. I loved Greta's character so much (maybe because I can relate to her. I feel so much like her. Both good and bad, Lol) The romance was sooo tender and sweet!! I cried at the end :) Happy, happy tears! READ.THIS.BOOK!!!!
A SISTER'S FORGIVENESS
I'm so glad I read this novel. It was a deeper read than a lot of the Christian fiction I've read lately, and I really liked that. This novel wasn't afraid to hit on some heavier topics in a meaningful way. Excellent read.
- Danica Page
Anna Schmidt takes us back to Pinecraft, Fl and her Women of Pinecraft series with this compelling novel set in this Mennonite community. It's a story about love of family, dealing with death and anger and finding forgiveness. It's about learning to seek forgiveness from others and to give forgiveness. In Tessa's journal she questions what mercy is and asks if that is what forgiveness is really all about. Your heart will be blessed by A SISTER'S FORGIVENESS.
- Reviewed by Viki Ferrell
This book kept me riveted throughout. I can’t imagine anything so horrible happening to a family as what this family faced. I don’t know how anyone could completely get over what happened but I guess if anyone could it would be someone of the Amish or Mennonite faith. They inspire me and make me want to be a better person/Christian. I do believe Anna Schmidt is one of my new favorite authors. Her books differ in style and content than most others in the Christian genre that I read. Redemption is a strong element and the characters dwell on things other than romance. These characters face real-life problems and struggles. I recommend this series, The Women of Pinecraft). http://thefriendlybooknook.com/2012/04/05/a-sisters-forgiveness-by-anna-schmidt-women-of-pinecraft/
Schmidt's descriptions are so real and raw that you can empathize with the character's emotions.
- Leslie L. McKee RT Book Review
A STRANGER'S GIFT
What an entertaining read! Hester Detweiler is a Mennonite and has embraced the faith of giving. She is no longer young, 33, and is giving her life to helping others. Her Dad, Arlen, is a Pastor at their church, and a woodworker. He has brought Samuel into his business, also as a prospective husband for Hester.
They live in Pinecrest Fl, in an Amish/Mennonite Community, and Hester is working with the MCC. As the story opens their is a devastation Hurricane...Hester...on its way with a direct hit of their area.
There is a banned Amishman, living a secluded life nearby. Hester is sent to see if she can get John Steiner to leave.
This is a story of forgiveness, and rebuilding, and following God's Will.
A very enjoyable read!
- Maureen - Amazon.com
A beautifully written story of the plain people in the Pinecraft/Sarasota area and how they all join hands, regardless of church affiliation to help each other and their neighbours during and after a hurricane. Anna Schmidt cleverly uses words to draw you into each of the characters lives. I feel as if i have seen the aftermath of disaster, and understand in part the workings of the different organizations that lend helping hands. I felt the frustration of people flocking to the area to help in the first few hours, then leaving them to struggle on alone. I chuckled as Hester tangled horns with Olive (aptly named) and wept with Rosalyn in her disappointments.
Anna is a very skilled author and I am looking forward to her next book in the Women of Pinecraft series which is due out in May 2012. I am happy to hear that it continues the story of two of Hester's best friends, but felt that this story ended well in that it did not leave the reader hanging...wondering what happened next. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel, and would recommend this to any one who love reading about the plain people. This is not a story about the Amish.
- Marianne - Amazon.com
Hopefully her first of many Amish stories! July 17, 2011
This is a darling story but certainly a little off the normal Amish story line
Great Story! July 11, 2011
This is a wonderful story. I have started reading Amish Fiction and this was #16. I love how the characters grow and that the unexpected does pop up. I hope to see another Hannah book coming soon
A CONVENIENT WIFE
SO GOOD! July 5, 2010
This book was fantastic! The story flowed beautifully, the characters were fleshed-out and believable, and the writing was incredible! The author was able to tell her story by "showing and not telling." I read a TON of Christian fiction, and this is definitely in my Top 10 Favorites.
this is a delightful book, focusing on the personalities of the characters and on their feelings.
i loved the reality of this book. the characters' feelings, actions and words were so real, i felt as if i was there with them, experiencing the same things as they. the excellent historical details also helped, of course.
Great book, enjoyed it to the end. February 10, 2010
Love the book, Anna Schmidt did a lovely job of pulling the story line together, would definitely read more of her books. I just finished it and knew I couldn't go to bed until I did.
It makes you want to live in the time period 1800s even though life was hard, it shows that kindness, love, peace and contentment can still be had in the worst of times. Integrity, honor are still important what ever the century.
Thank you for a wonderful story utilizing an under served era of American and world history.
WHAT REVIEWERS HAVE TO SAY…
Schmidt pens a wonderful love story. The characters are written with their strengths and weaknesses in plain sight. Their beliefs keep them strong and they learn it's OK to question God.
Schmidt is not timid about presenting her characters with their faults laid bare for the reader to see.
Schmidt’s story lets readers into the Amish world and teaches how they live and love.
Schmidt's characters are witty, charming, mysterious and worth getting to know.
Schmidt's top-notch story has a number of interesting characters -- and it's an intriguing look at life on a cranberry farm.
Matchmaker, Matchmaker... (4.5) has a superbly original plot. The combination of political setting with a faith-based way to find love will delight readers. Anna Schmidt's novel is absolutely outstanding.
Anna Schmidt's Seaside Cinderella (4) is reminiscent of the fairy tale. It's a charming, sweet story with a beautiful ending.