Even my husband noticed how quickly I completed this story. Mending Fences by Suzanne Woods Fisher had the components of traditional Amish fiction that I love so much, but with an interesting and more contemporary twist to the story of Luke Schrock. We learn quickly that addiction had ruled Luke’s life, but he has fought a hard earned battle in and out of rehab several times. The parallel of his actual fence-mending and his more figurative amend making creates a beautiful story of redemption filled with hard truths about how addiction affects people and how even simple choices made in the young years of our lives impact those around us.
As a person who has been affected by another’s addiction I can tell you that the way Fisher unfolds the details of Luke’s life and how his choices impacted others resonates. How many times do we really know how our decision affects the life of another? We are all consumed with our own decisions and what the results might be for us, but how often do we weigh the pros and cons of a decisions impact on those around us? This is a reality we should all engage. I am grateful that Luke’s story, even aside from addiction but instead as an unruly teenager, demonstrates a ripple effect that we may never see, let alone consider.
Fisher is a masterful storyteller and the unexpected twists and turns of the stories had me voraciously finishing the story before I knew it. Seeing how she weaves together the lives of the people in the community knitting them together through the bonds of faith, family (in this case family that came to them not by blood) and forgiveness is both encouraging and inspiring.
Izzy’s character, while we don’t know as much about her or the details of her story, makes a beautiful companion to Luke. Watching them both experience reconciliation within themselves and with others creates a beautifully woven tale and engaging story. I also really appreciated the characters David and Amos in the story, who despite their imperfect humanity, are steady and faithful leaders in the church. Seeing how the people Stoney Ridge respect David really touched my heart, and reminded me the value in appreciating those who have dedicated their lives to leading in faith and community. Watching him be a worthy and noble man makes me appreciate those in my life who are leading courageously, selflessly, and honestly.
If I’m totally honest I was a bit wary of the story at first, I’ll be honest and say it was primarily due to the fact that there was a male main character and the cover image didn’t seem consistent with what I knew of Fisher’s stories. Boy was my assumption wrong. I found those very things to be my favorite parts and the best twists. Like with all Fisher’s series I will be waiting with bated breath for the next story in this series, I am just so glad there is more!
** Don’t miss your chance to enter Suzanne Woods Fisher’s giveaway, a kindle, down below!**
Thanks to Celebrate Lit Bloggers for providing me a copy of the book. All the opinions shared here are my own.
About the Book
Book: Mending Fences
Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher
Genre: Christian fiction, Amish, Mennonite
Release Date: February 5, 2019
Every saint has a past. Every sinner has a future.
Luke Schrock is a new and improved man after a stint in rehab, though everyone in Stoney Ridge only remembers the old Luke. They might have forgiven him, but nobody trusts him. He has been allowed to live at Windmill Farm under two conditions. First, he must make a sincere apology to each person he’s hurt. Second, he must ask each victim of mischief to describe the damage he caused.
Simple, Luke thinks. Offering apologies is easy. But discovering the lasting effects his careless actions have caused isn’t so simple. It’s gut-wrenching.
And his list keeps growing. Izzy Miller, beautiful and frustratingly aloof, also boards at Windmill Farm, and Luke’s clumsy efforts to befriend her only insult and annoy her. Eager to impress, Luke sets out to prove himself to her by locating her mother. When he does, her identity sends shock waves through Stoney Ridge.
“A funny, heartwarming story of friendship, love, and the possibility of happily ever after.”—Amy Clipston, bestselling author of Seat by the Hearth
“Suzanne Woods Fisher has written a sweet and poignant story you won’t want put down. Definitely a must read!”—Kathleen Fuller, bestselling author of the Amish of Birch Creek series
Click here to purchase your copy.
About the Author
Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than two dozen novels, including the Nantucket Legacy, Amish Beginnings, The Bishop’s Family, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series. She is also the author of several nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Facebook @SuzanneWoodsFisherAuthor and Twitter @suzannewfisher.
More from Suzanne
A Friend in Need
“A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.” –Walter Winchell
Luke Schrock was nearly friendless. He returned to Stoney Ridge in Mending Fences after a stint in rehab only because his bishop, David Stoltzfus, strongly encouraged him. And everybody knows you didn’t say no to your bishop.
But nobody else in town wanted anything to do with Luke. They forgave him for the trouble he’d caused in his last downward spiral, the one that went too far. The one that even scared Luke. Forgiving him was the easy part. The Amish of Stoney Ridge were intentional forgivers. It was their trust—that’s what he would have to earn. Trust was a fragile thing. Once broken, it wasn’t easily mended.
Somehow, David was still able to look past the behavior to see the best of Luke Schrock. He didn’t stop there. He found a family who was willing to take Luke in, and he spent hours with him—at times as a mentor, at times as a father figure, but mostly as a friend.
A loyal friend can have a powerful impact. Consider those friends in the town of Capernaum, who carried their paralyzed friend to Jesus for healing—so determined to get to Him that they dragged his stretcher up onto a roof, broke through the roof tiles, and lowered him down. Can you imagine being in the crowd, listening to Jesus, as straw and tile pieces and branches and bugs started to drop down from the ceiling? A shocking display…of devoted friendship. And what a miraculous outcome for that paralyzed man!*
I won’t tell you how Luke’s story ends—only that he works hard to find ways to make amends to those he hurt, to regain trust. Especially the hard-to-earn trust of a brown-eyed beauty named Izzy.
Do you have a real friend like David Stoltzfus, who walks in when the rest of the world has walked out? Or maybe the better question, for you, for me, is to ask ourselves if we are friends to others like David Stoltzfus was to Luke Schrock. I know I want to be.
*This miracle is reported in three gospels: Mark 2:1-12, Matthew 9:1-8, Luke 5:17-26.
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To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away a grand prize of an Amazon Kindle!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/de7d/mending-fences-celebration-tour-giveaway