It's 1971, and Betsie Troyer's peaceful and predictable life is about to become anything but.
When their parents flee the Amish, nineteen-year-old Betsie and her seventeen-year-old sister Sadie are distraught. Under the dubious guidance of a doting aunt, the girls struggle to keep the secret, praying their parents will return before anyone learns the truth--a truth that may end all hopes of Betsie's marriage to Charley Yoder.
Worse still, Betsie must learn a trade while she boards with a dysfunctional Englisher family: Sheila, a twelve-year-old desperately searching for a friend and in dire need of her mother; the free-spirited mother, who runs off to "find herself" on the stage; the angry father whose structured life crumbles; and Michael, a troubled college dropout nearly killed in the Kent State Massacre.
Thrust into the English world, Betsie must grapple with the realities of war and miniskirts, pot parties and police brutality, protests and desertion. Can she help the Sullivan family and find peace in her new surroundings, or must she forget the bargain she made and seek refuge back in Plain City with protective and reliable Charley?
This was an enjoyable book. Betsie's parents have left the Amish and gone to live with the English. She is trying to keep everyone from knowing. Also, her cousin has been drafted and she agreed to learn the business and take his place at the harness making apprentice. She doesn't plan to get close to the English though, but keep her distance.
I felt so terrible for Betsie at the start of this book, watching her parents leave like they did. They did want she and her sister to come with them but watching them 'sneak away' was horrible. I did like the plan for her to stay apart from the English family she was to live with. I didn't get a few of the references, but they were 1970s so I chalked it up to not living through that era. The story was enjoyable and I really liked Betsie and want to know more about her!
I rate this a 4/5. It was a good/different Amish novel.
Thank you to litfuse for the review copy of this book. I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.