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Apple Ridge Books In Order

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Publication Order of Apple Ridge Books

The Sound of Sleigh Bells (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Christmas Singing (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Scent of Cherry Blossoms (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Dawn of Christmas (2013)Description / Buy at Amazon

Apple Ridge is a series of novels written by Cindy Woodsmall. The books delve into the goings on of the Amish people.

+The Story

The Apple Ridge series is a collection of novellas. The books are all pretty simple, short reads. However, that doesn’t make them any less impactful. Cindy has the capacity to unveil so much heart and emotion using so few words.

The Apple Ridge novels revolve around the community of Apple Ridge. Apple Ridge is just like any other Amish community. It’s residents live isolated and conservative lives that are beholden to their Christian beliefs.

What sets the Apple Ridge series apart isn’t the Amish community but, rather, its people. The cast of the Apple Ridge series is the most diverse you will encounter in any Amish series of novels.

Cindy’s heroes and heroines are real people. That is often what sets good Amish fiction apart. The best Amish writers know how to take the seemingly foreign culture of the Amish and ground it in real life, delivering characters that even the non-Amish can understand and relate to.

Cindy does the same thing in her Apple Ridge novels. However, her characters are a little less conservative than the protagonists of many Amish novels. Cindy’s characters often struggle with the restrictions of Amish life.

And it isn’t that they detest their upbringing and the culture they have been born into. Rather, they reach a point in their lives where they begin to desire greater freedom, where the limitations of Amish life create a longing in them for more, a longing that they can never seem to fulfill.

However, rather than sliding away from the Church and from the lives their parents lived, Cindy’s orchestrates events that force her protagonists back to Apple Ridge. It is usually there that they find the miracle they were looking for all along, typically in the form of a loving partner they never thought they could ever find.

The Apple Ridge series is technically a collection of romance stories. That much cannot be denied. Plenty of characters in the books fall in love. And, often, it isn’t until they find that one person they didn’t know they were looking for that they attain healing from the hurts that life has laid upon them.

However, romance isn’t the center of the Apple Ridge books but, rather, the hope and happiness and joy that can be found in one’s family and faith. Cindy’s books also emphasize the part that unexpected miracles play in the lives of the broken and the hurting.

The Apple Ridge series appeals to everyone. The concepts it works with are not so outlandish that they will scare away people that are not familiar with the Amish. If anything, Cindy paints Amish life with warm and inviting colors. She uses these books to introduce readers to the Amish culture.

Some readers will be surprised to realize that they can relate to and empathize with the troubles of Cindy’s characters, this despite not understanding their Amish sensibilities.

+The Author

Cindy is a New York Times Bestseller that has written fiction and nonfiction. The author has a love and appreciation for Amish life that manifests starkly in her books. Cindy only began taking her writing seriously after her children grew up.

Before that, she was a little too busy playing her role as a homeschool mom. The less her kids needed her, the more time Cindy had on her hands, the greater her passion for writing became.

Cindy’s curiosity for the conservative life of the Amish was sparked when she was a child living in Maryland. She met a Mennonite girl that lived and thrived under the strict upbringing of her parents.

Cindy was fascinated by the way the girl dressed and the fact that she had spent her life steering clear of television and radio. Whenever the girl came over to her house, Cindy was careful to adhere to the rules of the house she came from primarily because she didn’t want the girl’s parents to end their friendship because they thought Cindy was a bad influence.

Because both of their parents did not exactly approve of the relationship, Cindy worked hard to navigate the landmines surrounding her friend’s life, determined to not introduce any infractions into the equation.

As the year went by, Cindy met numerous other Amish families, gaining an in depth understanding of the lives they lived and the sort of warmth that Amish households could nurture despite restrictions of their faith.

When Cindy began to write, it made all the sense to her to introduce her readers to the same world of the Amish that had welcomed her over the years. Cindy has gained a lot of success for her Amish novels.

+The Sound of Sleigh Bells

Beth Hertzler hasn’t been the same since she lost her fiancé. Working in Aunt Lizzy’s store has done little to improve her mood, this despite the opportunities for adventure that her job as liaison between the Amish Craftsmen and Englischers provides her.

With remorse and heartache still eating away at her, Beth encounters a spark of hope when she comes across the most intricately carved piece of art she has ever seen. The piece moves her and she makes it her mission to locate the artist and to help him find homes for his work, though she worries that the art might be deemed idolatry by her Church.

Aunt Lizzy knows that the changes in Beth began when she encountered the intricate woodcarving. And she wastes no time in finding Jonah, the artist, and connecting him with Beth, hopeful that the two hearts can heal one another.

+The Christmas Singing

Mattie thought her world ended when Gideon Butler ended their engagement and relationship on Christmas Eve three years ago. But she survived and moved on to a new life in Ohio. She started decorating cakes for a living and even met a man who could offer her the dream that Gideon broke.

When Mattie returns to Apple Ridge, she finds Gideon waiting for him.

There was never a time when Gideon didn’t love Mattie. And he didn’t want to end their engagement. However, the circumstances at the time didn’t give him much choice. When Gideon confronts Mattie, he is determined to weed out the dishonesty that destroyed their future.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Apple Ridge

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