October 09, 2011
Treasuring Emma by Kathleen Fuller
I really like the genre of Amish romance. I read them quite often. That being said, I wasn't really impressed with this one. It had some good elements, but largely just fell flat for me.
Emma has just lost her mother to cancer, and living with her grandmother, is often quite lonely. Since her true love left the community two years ago, she has given up hope of being a wife or mother and has instead settled into her role of taking care of her grandmother and assorted pets. Her sister Clara is a little more ambitious and she and her husband have great plans for the old workshop on Emma's property. They are hurting for money and need it even more so when a cousin of Clara's husband comes to town. But he's not the only person visiting. Emma's old love Adam is also back in town, still struggling with his feelings towards the Amish and whether or not he wants to be a part of the community. Adam also doesn't like the cousin (Mark) as he thinks there is more to the guy than meets the eye. But Emma only sees someone who is attracted to her and won't see his faults.
The characters to be honest, were kind of week. None of them had very strong convictions and they fluctuated quite often. Emma herself was rather dull and spent a lot of time not being sure of anything. Understandable since she was in grief, but she let herself get walked on too much. I was a bit taken aback at how often she was described as fat and ugly as well. I was pleasantly surprised to see an Amish character cast as a bad guy. Usually they can be stern or just cold, but this one actually was extremely evil. Not the usual character for these types of novels.
The plot was slow moving and honestly, despite the bad guy in the novel, not very exciting. Sure it had its moments but it was pretty tame for about 90% of the book. Since it is Amish fiction it could also be Christian fiction as God and other religious elements are discussed in the book. This one had more discussion of that than normal, but it still wasn't overbearing. In all, it was a pretty easy book to read and I found myself finishing it quickly. I do have to say (even though I don't usually comment on them) that the reader's guide was kind of pitiful as far as discussion questions go. Not a lot of deep thought generating ones.
Not the best of Amish romances. I might try more by Fuller but not anytime soon.