Sunday, March 8, 2015

Anna's Crossing

Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher
Publisher: Revell
March 2015
ISBN: 978-0800723194
Genre: historical Amish

Some endings are really beginnings . . . 

On a hot day in 1737 in Rotterdam, Anna König reluctantly sets foot on the Charming Nancy, a merchant ship that will carry her and her fellow Amish believers across the Atlantic to start a new life. As the only one in her community who can speak English, she feels compelled to go. But Anna is determined to complete this journey and return home--assuming she survives. She's heard horrific tales of ocean crossings and worse ones of what lay ahead in the New World. But fearfulness is something Anna has never known.

Ship's carpenter Bairn resents the somber people--dubbed Peculiars by the deckhands--who fill the lower deck of the Charming Nancy. All Bairn wants to do is to put his lonely past behind him, but that irksome and lovely lass Anna and her people keep intruding on him.

Delays, storms, illness, and diminishing provisions test the mettle and patience of everyone on board. When Anna is caught in a life-threatening situation, Bairn makes a discovery that shakes his entire foundation. But has the revelation come too late?

Bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher invites you back to the beginning of Amish life in America with this fascinating glimpse into the first ocean crossing--and the lives of two intrepid people who braved it.

My thoughts: ANNA’S CROSSING was a difficult for me to read even though Ms. Fisher softened it up significantly from actual journals. My ancestors came across on ships to Pennsylvania – and I know one of my ancestors was born on the ship. Knowing my family likely endured the more realistic stories of the diaries still didn’t make this softened up book any easier for me to read.

The story started in a rather formula way for historical fiction with a mandatory death. I figured that early kill-off would be one who died, but didn’t expect it so early on. There were some surprises in the book that I didn’t expect.

Ms. Fisher also included an extensive author note telling us where she softened the story up and where she made assumptions and why. I like t hat this is based on actual real events but it was still a rather depressing book for me. I love Ms. Fisher’s contemporary Amish fiction and nonfiction, but I didn’t enjoy this one. However, if you want to know more about the history of the Amish coming to America then you will want to read Anna’s Crossing.

Available in e-book, paperback and hardcover. 336 pages 

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