This is the second in the A Big Sky series and is equally as good as the first. Though it could be read alone I would greatly encourage the reader to read the first book: Beside Still Waters, in order to get a full understanding of the characters and their histories and struggles.
At the end of the last book I was sure that Marianna would be entering a relationship with Ben Stone. However, this book is the continuing struggle of her heart. With the unexpected arrival of Aaron Zook to her home Marianna is faced with having to decide what she should do. She feels as if she is being torn between two worlds - The Englisch and and the Amish.
As she discovers more about the God that she loves she begins to question the beliefs of the Amish - in that their way is the best and only way. As she struggles to reconcile this she is also dealing with the matters of the heart that seem to pull her in two different directions. One is the safe and expected way - to marry Aaron Zook a good Amish man. Aaron is the one she had planned on marrying while living in Indiana. The other is a path she has never traveled, one that will mean leaving the Amish way behind - this is allowing herself to fall in love with Ben Stone. A man who loves God and serves God with all his heart. This is the man her uncle Ike likes best because he is good christian man - who lives his life according to God not the traditions of man.
I found myself almost crying at the heartbreak Marianna was feeling and at the same time wishing she would follow her heart towards Ben. The ultimate question that must be answered is Will Marianna do what everyone expects her to do in order to maintain peace and happiness or will she ultimately follow God's will.
Though the book ends with an apparent answer to this question I am hoping that this is not what she actually chooses in the next book. This book ends with some unanswered questions that I can not wait to see answered in the next book.
I have to say that Tricia Goyer has done a superb job of leading up to the next book, leaving the reader hungry to know the rest of the story. I can not wait till the next one comes out!!
Thank you B&H Publishing for this review copy.
Release Date Oct 2011! Pick up your copy at your local store!