Sisters of Sugarcreek

Many lives were changed the day a fire burned down Faith Community Church, devastating the small town of Sugarcreek, Ohio.

Now a young Amish widow, Lydia Gruber faces an uncertain future. Her husband, a craftsman and volunteer firefighter, always took care of everything, keeping her isolated from others in their community. Without anyone or any skills, how will she survive?

With the death of her beloved aunt Rose in the fire, single mom Jessica Holtz inherits Rose’s Knit One Quilt Too cottage. Though determined to keep the shop open in her aunt’s memory, she doesn’t know the first thing about knitting and quilting and begins to see her aunt’s dream slip through her fingers.

When Liz Cannon lost her dear friend Rose, she also lost her partner in the Secret Stitches Society―the name they gave themselves while delivering gifts of hope to troubled folks in the dark of night. Liz convinces Jessica to keep the anonymous society going, despite the younger women’s inadequacy with knitting and sewing needles. But soon Liz has problems of her own as the life she has rebuilt for herself begins to crumble again.

When Liz and Jessica choose Lydia for their first mission, the three women cross paths and form an unlikely friendship in the aftermath of tragedy. As they walk together through triumph and heartbreak―through grief and new chances at love―they begin to discover that with friends by your side, a stitch of hope can be found anywhere.

Cathy Liggett created a warm and beautiful story of friendship; particularly the positive and uplifting warmth it can provide in times of adversity. Although there is a dash of romance sprinkled throughout, the focus never strays too far from its original intent to show love blossoms in the most unlikeliest of places and it doesn’t have to be ‘romantic’ to be life changing.

 The plot line had a good of balance of story woven with Amish customs and dialogue along with the secular which showed that even through differences in spoken words and customs, who we are and the emotional spectrum we live with is the same.

 There are three main characters (Jessica, Lydia and Liz) who all face various issues such as becoming a widow, financial troubles, and single parenthood which provides the author a chance to showcase her skills at character development through the myriad of choices they make when tossed into antagonistic situations.

 One of the things I liked was that even though there were some obvious spiritual undertones it wasn’t your typical ‘Christian’ book in that the characters face some bad stuff but everything worked out well in the end because they had faith in God. Those stories always irritate me because they make it seem like if you are a Christian then all the bad stuff will work out in your favor because God is like some magic genie. In this story Liggett did a great job showing that, yes they are Christian, but good things only came to them because of hard work, perseverance and helping others. It’s very easy to see how each of them could’ve ended up with completely different, and less desirable outcomes, if they had more self-serving personalities.  It was good that she demonstrated more realistic scenarios in her work.

 I thought it was the perfect book to read with a group and talk about the impact bonds of friendship has had on their lives.

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