Without trying, Phoebe Bontrager has a pen pal—a male one named Jalon Chupp! What started out as a letter delivered to the wrong address has quickly turned into a post office romance. But the twenty-three year old Amish girl also has a lot of secrets.
First of all there is Malachi, her son, a child she had out of wedlock. Next, Phoebe and Malachi are living with an aunt who clearly hates the two of them, and never misses a chance to verbally abuse them. Her parents still do not understand why she left their home. Both Phoebe and Malachi were well-loved there, and are missed a lot. Her mother was clearly disappointed when Phoebe announced she was moving out.
Jalon has a past with secrets, too. He has struggled with alcoholism for years. Jalon also carries the burden of guilt for the accident that left his cousin in a wheelchair. The letters he has exchanged with Phoebe are the first bright lights in his life in many years. Despite never meeting her, Jalon is sure he is in love with Phoebe and sets out to meet her in person. That decision will change not only Jalon and Phoebe’s lives, but that of many of their family members as well.
This is a story of Amish people who have old fashioned values but are faced with modern day problems. Phoebe finds herself confronted with the question of whose fault is it when bad things happen to good people–do bad things happen because of another person’s sins? Jesus himself was asked if a man’s blindness was the result of his or his parent’s sins. Jesus surprised them by saying it wasn’t anyone’s fault rather, “this man was born blind so that God’s power could be shown in him.”https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+9&version=NCV Could that be Phoebe’s answer, too?
In addition to kind Amish people, this story also features Amish who have let their own human weaknesses cause them to be mean and controlling—they care more about rules than people, or the One who made them. This is a very interesting tale that will keep you turning the pages to understand the very likeable Phoebe’s behavior. I also liked the quirky way Phoebe and Jalon “met.” This is a good book that you will enjoy. I recommend this 5-star book to those who like Amish tales, or story-lines that address modern problems!
Thomas Nelson Publishing has provided bookreadingtic with a complimentary copy of Written in Love for the purpose of review. All opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
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