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Mary Christner Borntrager Books In Order

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Publication Order of Ellie's People Books

Mary Christner Borntrager is a renowned American writer of mystery, Christian fiction, historical fiction, and adult fiction stories. She is particularly famous for writing the Ellie’s People series. This series is based on the lives of ten different people in the life of the main character named Ellie, including that of Ellie. Borntrager’s books are popular all over the world and are known for their rich cast of characters and interesting storylines. They have achieved success in all the places of their release and have helped Borntrager establish herself as one of the prominent authors of the Christian fiction genre. Author Borntrager was born in Plain City, Ohio on March 27, 1921. Her parents, Noah J. Christner and Mattie Christner (nee Yoder), were of the Amish origin. Noah Christner was a farmer by profession, while Mattie Christner was a homemaker.

Borntrager married her husband John T. Borntrager on June 27, 1940, who was also a farmer. The couple was parents of four children, namely Noah Jay, John T., E. Kathryn, and Geneva. The hobbies of author Borntrager in addition to writing include playing table games, quilting, reading, and writing poetry. Before stepping into her work life, Borntrager completed her graduation from Wisconsin-Madison University. She started her career by working as a youth social worker and was involved in this field of work between 1966 and 1978. After that, she decided to become a full-time writer and poet. In between, Borntrager has also served as a public speaker and spoken on various social topics. Her debut novel, Ellie, was the winner of the 1988 Angle Award. It was given to her by renowned producer Mary Dorr.

Additionally, Borntrager won many other awards and accolades for her work throughout her career. During one of her interviews, Borntrager told that to answer the many questions of her children & grandchildren and to preserve her family heritage, she sat down to write her first book, Ellie. She also said that it was important for her to uphold essential moral values. Following the immense popularity of her debut book, numerous requests started coming to encourage Borntrager to write more novels. She was so much inspired by all the public requests that she was forced to give another attempt in writing. Ellie was nominated as a Gold Medallion finalist along with four other books.

All of the books penned by author Borntrager are based on the lifestyle of the people belonging to the Amish community. Her own experiences from her childhood and youth form a major part of the stories depicted in her novels. Each book brings authentic stories to life about the Amish and is perfect for readers with a particular interest in Amish fiction. Borntrager’s books are also well-suited for those readers who like to read about real depictions of life in the Amish community. Overall, the Ellie’s People books have sold over half a million printed copies across the globe. They are considered classics among the Mennonites and Amish. Many critics believe that the fans of Laura Ingalls Wilder will love Borntrager’s novels a lot and the characters described in them.

Besides writing as an independent author, Borntrager also contributed to collaborations with other authors. One such collaboration of Borntrager was to write the third book of Jane Peart’s Edgecliffe Manor series along with her. Many readers, fellow writers, and critics have applauded Borntrager’s efforts in coming up with interesting stories. They have also praised her unique characters and settings that she has depicted in her books. Borntrager is now considered one of the great authors of her time. Now aged 98 years, her health doesn’t permit her to write. So, she just hopes that readers will continue to read her books and remember her even after she is gone.

The Ellie’s People series written by author Mary Christner Borntrager is comprised of a total of 10 books released between 1988 and 1997. Each book of this series features Amish stories based on different characters. The main character mentioned by Borntrager in this series is Ellie Maust. Other essential characters include Rebecca Eash, Missy, Rachel Miller, Susie Glick, Hildie Weaver, Daniel Weaver, Susan Miller, David Eash, James Miller, Reuben Weaver, Andy Maust, Polly Miller, Tom, Sarah Troyer, Sadie Zook, Rose Ann, Mandy Schrock, Pearlie Mae, Lucy Annie, etc. The debut book of this Amish series is entitled ‘Ellie’. It was released by the Herald Press in 1988. The book opens by introducing Ellie Maust as an Amish girl of the Old Order, who grows up in the early 20th century. She has a close English friend named Missy and wishes to wear bright colored dresses like her. Also, she wants to wear perfume and face cream like the fancy hired girl named Susie Glick.

The daily routine of Ellie’s life is to look after the new babies, milk cows, learn gardening, water plants, etc. While doing all this, she strains against the strict ideas of her father and wonders how her future will turn out to be. In between, Ellie engages in adventures that bring happiness in life for brief moments, like having a sleepover at the house of her English friend and catching a buggy ride. After Ellie’s family relocated to a new farm, she is burdened with more responsibilities and chores. The only form of contentment is her life is attending night singings on Sundays with her community’s young people and starting a courtship with the gentle and kind David Eash. Later, tragedy strikes Ellie’s family and she is forced to find ways to move on in life. She finds comfort in her community and Amish faith, and thereby, blossoms into a dedicated young woman.

Another interesting novel of this series is its second installment called ‘Rebecca’. It was also published by the Heral Press in 1989. Initially, Rebecca Eash is introduced as the daughter of Ellie, who also full of high spirits like her. She is employed with a different Amish family and likes to be in the company of her Mennonite friend named Susan Miller. A normal day in Rebecca’s life is spent in canning, laundry, quilting bees, barn-raising, etc. When Susan Miller’s brother James reveals his love for her and she too feels drawn towards him, Rebecca’s parents do not approve of it. Later, James shows the willingness to join the Amish Church and give up his Mennonite faith. This brings joy in Rebecca’s life and a hope for a bright future ahead. But, James sees a dream in which God asks him to do something that he cannot ignore. This puts his relationship with Rebecca in a doubtful situation, causing Rebecca to come face to face with the toughest decision of her life.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Mary Christner Borntrager

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