cover image Searching for You

Searching for You

Jody Hedlund. Bethany House, $15.99 trade paper (352p) ISBN 978-0-7642-1806-4

Set in the 1850s and spanning the U.S., this entertaining third installment of the Orphan Train series from Hedlund (A Loyal Heart) continues the story of the Neumann sisters. While her older sisters have married well, 17-year-old Sophie Neumann is dating a gang leader in New York City and providing for Olivia and Nicholas, two young orphans. After her boyfriend shoots a rival gang member, Sophie and the orphans flee the city and head west. In Mayfield, Ill., she convinces the Ramseys, a farming family, to take in Olivia and Nicholas. Meanwhile, farmer Euphenia Duff hires Sophie to help on her property. Euphenia, a patient and positive role model, teaches Sophie how to manage a farm and read the Bible. Sophie is also shocked to discover that her new neighbor is Reinhold Weiss, an old family friend. Sophie and Reinhold are attracted to each other, but he knows Sophie’s wealthy sisters would want a richer man for her. When Sophie discovers Mr. Ramsey is treating Olivia and Nicholas badly, she proposes a marriage of convenience to Reinhold in order to take the children. Trapped between his own desires and his desire for Sophie to reconnect with her family, Reinhold must decide on the most admirable path forward. This sweet, faith-filled novel beautifully considers the core of what it means to be a family. (Dec.)