cover image The Preacher's Daughter

The Preacher's Daughter

Beverly Lewis, . . Bethany House, $19.99 (349pp) ISBN 978-0-7642-0120-2

One of Christian fiction's most beloved authors of the gentle read offers a new series called Annie's People, set in Paradise, Pa. It dishes up the same sort of faith-filled story line and Plain People characters Lewis's fans have come to expect. At age 20, Annie Zook is a budding artist, but her conservative Amish community forbids its members to draw or paint pictures. How will she choose between family and vocation? The disappearance of a small child years ago has left scars on various characters, and new developments in the case threaten to open old wounds. Annie's best friend in the community, Esther Hochstetler, finds that her marriage to an abusive man has become a nightmare, while Annie's pen pal, the wealthy Colorado "Englisher" Louisa Stratford (conveniently an art teacher) visits Annie in Paradise to heal from a broken engagement. Both women explore the possibilities of change. Romance, of course, is always waiting in the wings, especially in the character of handsome "Englisher" Ben Martin. Culinary details, glimpses into the workings of Amish life and strong character development help readers stay with the story's multiple changes of perspective. Plot hints in the final pages will keep Lewis's loyal fans eagerly anticipating the next installment. 300,000 first printing. (Oct.)