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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Emma Blooms at Last by Naomi King

Romance is in the air during the fall wedding season in the Amish community of Cedar Creek. But while one loving couple prepares to tie the knot, Amanda and Wyman Brubaker’s large family faces a threat from outside their happy circle…and must learn to pull together.
Recently wed Amanda and Wyman Brubaker are thrilled that their children from previous marriages have blended together to form a strong family. But when the construction of Wyman’s new grain elevator is delayed, making the project more expensive than anticipated, Amanda’s determination to rally the kids into taking on work to improve the family’s finances comes into conflict with Wyman’s sense of responsibility as head of the household….
Meanwhile, as James Graber and Abby Lambright prepare for their long-awaited nuptials, folks gather from far and wide. Amanda’s nephew Jerome has long been smitten with James’s sister Emma and wants to seize this chance to woo her. But Emma’s been burned once and is twice shy of trusting the fun-loving, never-serious Jerome. As Emma and Jerome struggle to understand each other, and find the courage to make a leap of faith, the Brubakers face a bigger challenge than they first anticipated and begin to discover just what it means to fight…the Amish way.
My Review:

This was another wonderful story by Naomi King.  Naomi is such a great writer that she makes you feel like you know the characters.  I really connected with the character, Emma.  I also like how Naomi keeps the characters from previous books in front burner storylines in each book.  It is nice to read about a caring community of people.  Great job Naomi.

I received a complimentary copy of this book for my honest review.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Drawing upon her experiences in Jamesport, the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi, longtime Missourian Naomi King writes of simpler times and a faith-based lifestyle in her Home at Cedar Creek/One Big Happy Family series. Like her series heroine, Abby Lambright, Naomi considers it her personal mission to be a listener—to heal broken hearts and wounded souls—and to share her hearth and home. Faith and family, farming and frugality are hallmarks of her lifestyle: like Abby, she made her wedding dress and the one her mom wore, too! She’s a deacon, a dedicated church musician and choir member, and when she’s not writing, Naomi loves to travel, try new recipes, crochet, and sew. Naomi, whose real name is Charlotte Hubbard, now lives in Minnesota with her husband and their border collie, Ramona.

Excerpt Five:


“Shall we get some lunch?” Jerome asked when they were seated in the rig. “There’s a vintage-style diner just down the road—”


“Or we could go back to Cedar Creek,” Emma remarked in a hopeful tone. “Between what Mamm and I fixed and what Amanda brought, there’s plenty enough for us to join them.”


Jerome smiled. “But you’ve spent your morning with me and saved me from making a lot of mistakes,” he said gently. “I’d like to treat you to a meal you didn’t have to cook yourself. Will that be all right?”


Emma smiled as the color rose in her cheeks. “Well, since you put it that way . . .”


He was thankful that once they were seated in a red leatherette booth with a chrome-edged table between them and a miniature jukebox on the wall, Emma took off her black coat and bonnet. In her honey-gold cape dress and a cream-colored apron that fastened behind her neck, she looked much more attractive and . . . inviting.


Jerome was pleased when she ordered a patty melt with fries and a side of tomato soup. At least she wasn’t going to be finicky about her food, like some girls were. After he ordered the blue-plate special, which was meat loaf, he tapped on the wall-mounted juke box. “Pick a song, Emma. We can listen while we wait for our lunch.”


As she flipped through the selections, Jerome fished out a quarter and put it in the slot. “F six,” she murmured.


In a few moments, “See You Later, Alligator,” filled the small diner. As Emma tapped her fingers on the tabletop, keeping time to the old rock-and-roll song, she looked as happy as Jerome had ever seen her. At last, he’d found something they both enjoyed, even if the church didn’t allow them to play such music at home.


“Dat took James and Abby and me to a horse auction once, when we were around ten or eleven,” she recounted. “We ate lunch at a place similar to this one, and Dat played this record on the jukebox—and it’s stuck with us ever since. Even on days when he can’t recall what he ate for breakfast, he knows every word to this song.”


“It’s a snappy tune,” Jerome agreed, tapping his toes. Just for fun, he wanted to catch Emma’s feet between his and give them a quick squeeze, but he thought better of it. “It’s nice to have that memory from when your dat was younger and stronger. My mamm and dat died when our house burned to the ground, when I was just ten.”


Emma’s eyes widened. “And how was it that you didn’t—I mean—”


The concern on her face coaxed Jerome to grasp her hand. “I was staying overnight at a cousin’s house,” he replied. “The firemen said the old furnace exploded, and because the house was built of very dry wood they’d saved from a barn they’d torn down, my folks were gone before they knew what hit them. That’s when Aunt Amanda and Uncle Atlee took me in—and probably why I get such a kick out of your dat.”


“You didn’t lose any brothers or sisters, I hope?” Emma murmured. “If something happened to James, I’m not sure I could bear it.”


Jerome felt comforted by her concern, even if the accident happened more than half his lifetime ago. “No, it seems they broke the mold when they made me,” he said with a chuckle.


For a moment, Emma’s gaze lingered on his. Such an unusual shade of brown her eyes were, similar to a mixture of honey and cinnamon. Too soon, she eased her hand away. “I’m sorry,” she murmured. “That was a horrible thing to endure when you were so young.”



One Big Happy Family, Book 2

NAL Trade (November 4, 2014)

ISBN-13: 9780451417886 •• ISBN-10: 0451417887


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  1. Melina, thanks for once again featuring and reviewing my book on your blog!

  2. I think it's neat that you made your wedding dresses and live a life reminescent of the amish as far as farming and frugality. I was raised in a frugal way and still follow many of the ways I was raised with. No need to be wasteful.

    1. I totally agree on trying not to be wasteful, Loretta! Thank you so much for stopping by today to share your thoughts!

  3. Replies
    1. Thank you, Karen--and I liked that you stopped by today!

  4. I liked your review and author's bio.
    I love Charlotte Hubbard's books!

    1. Hi, Cheryl, and both of me thank you for your compliment and for stopping by today!

  5. Thanks so much for the review and excerpt!

    Trix, vitajex(at)Aol(Dot)com

    1. You're welcome, Trix, and thanks for following my tour again today!

  6. I really appreciated the author bio because I enjoy know something that appealed to me about the writer of books. I especially like that she's from Minnesota , as that is where my grandson is attending school at the moment--MLC. Ronnalord(at)msn(dot)com

    1. Thanks for reading my bio closely enough to notice my Minna-SOda location! Used to live in Missouri (where I researched my Amish series) but now I really like it up here. Good luck to your grandson!

  7. Your review was captivating and learning about the author was interesting. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  8. I love to crochet and read Amish fiction! I see that Naomi/Charlotte also enjoys crocheting!

  9. I love to crochet, and am hoping I'm not too old to learn to quilt. Thank you for this lovely review!

  10. I really enjoyed reading the excerpts from the book. It makes me want to read it all the more. It's going on my TBR list. lisajcowell(at)cs(dot)com in Ohio