Title: The Amish Quiltmaker’s Unexpected Baby by Jennifer Beckstrand
The Amish Quiltmaker Series Book One
Publisher: Zebra Books
Genre: Contemporary, Amish, Romance
Length: 279 pages
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
In the first in an engaging new series, an Amish quiltmaker moves from Pennsylvania to a new settlement in Colorado, where adventure, challenges, and love are waiting . . .
Esther Zook is starting over after her father’s death, piecing together a new life with as much care as she puts into her intricate quilts. When her wayward sister abandons her baby, it throws all those plans for a fresh start asunder. Esther had accepted her status as an old maid—but a mother? And a single one, at that? Not that she hasn’t noticed Levi Kiem, the eligible young man who’s making repairs in her house. Yet he surely has no interest in Esther as anything other than a friend . . .
It’s true that Levi has plenty of marriage prospects. His dat has even offered to send him to Ohio to find a wife. Yet the more time he spends with Esther, the more intrigued he becomes. Feisty and independent, she’s nothing like the wife he once imagined for himself. Yet just as a quilt is crafted from contrasting cloth, they might find that together, they can create a family to cherish . . .
The Amish Quiltmaker’s Unexpected Baby by Jennifer Beckstrand is a charming Amish romance with a relatable storyline.
Thirty year old Esther Zook is settling into her new life in Byler, CO when her estranged sister Ivy shows up. Ivy jumped the fence years ago and Esther has rarely seen her in the intervening years. This visit is a shock since Ivy has her newborn baby girl with her. After staying a brief time, Ivy takes off with Esther’s money but leaves baby Winter behind. Esther does not know anything about babies so she is grateful when plumber Levi Kiem stops by. She is even more appreciative when Levi proves to be experienced with babies and sends his family over lend a hand. Esther and Levi become friends over the course of several months and both are smitten with her niece. But how will they react when Ivy unexpectedly returns?
Esther has good reason not to trust Ivy so she reluctantly allows her and the baby to stay with her. Their once close relationship rapidly deteriorated during the years leading up to Ivy running away. Esther has made peace with the fact she will remain a spinster so she has never spent much time around babies. At first completely out of her depth, she is shocked when realizes how much she loves Winnie. Esther is also rather surprised at how much she enjoys Levi’s company.
At twenty-four, Levi remains unmarried due to a dearth of young women in their Amish community. He is more than happy to help Esther but he makes it clear he only considers her a friend. He likes spending time with her but his plan to seek a bride out of state has not changed. Levi is aware of the situation between the two sisters but he is completely unprepared to deal with Ivy.
The youngest of the Zook children, Ivy is spoiled and does not give Esther’s feelings much consideration. She is also very manipulative and vindictive when things do not go her way. Broke and with no place to live, Ivy’s eventual return to Esther’s home is not much of a surprise. Despite Esther’s uneasiness at letting Ivy back into her life, she does not turn her away. Unsettled, she does everything she can to placate Ivy because of her very real fear that her sister will leave and take Winnie with her. But what will Esther have to give up in order to keep Ivy happy?
The Amish Quiltmaker’s Unexpected Baby is an entertaining Amish romance with quirky characters and a realistic storyline. Esther is an independent woman who is afraid of getting her heart broken again. Levi is a likable young man with a giving nature. Ivy is not easy to like but has potential if she is willing to change her ways. The friendship between Esther and Levi is quite heartwarming but will they have the opportunity to explore their deepening feelings for each other?
This first book in Jennifer Beckstrand’s The Amish Quiltmaker series is sure to be a hit with readers of Amish fiction.