Book Review~A Shining Light

Thanks to the awesome folks over at Bethany House Publishing I was able to read and review A shining Light by Judith Miller.

It's based in West Amana, Iowa in 1890 when young mother and widow Andrea Wilson returns home after she hears of her husband's death she returns to her family farm only to find that it's no longer her family's farm. The kind people of Amana welcome her and her young son, Lukas with open arms. Faced with no other options she must rely on the kindness and support offered by the colonists in Amana. 

Andrea is faced with several trials throughout her journey, both spiritually, and physically. This is a great story of struggle, triumph, faith, and family. I really enjoyed this book. I'm always drawn to Amana Colonies books, I don't know if it's the lifestyle, the time period, the faith...or the childhood memories they evoke. We live in Iowa and as a kid whenever we'd go on road trips my grandmother would always plan routes that had us stopping in the Amana Colonies for lunch or dinner, usually on the way out and back. 

I've always admired the simplistic, communal lifestyle, and the complete devotion to God that these people had. This book let me get lost in that, reading about Andrea and her young son adapting to this new lifestyle, and how growing closer to the people of Amana brought her closer to God really opened my eyes to some areas I was struggling with, and reminded me of God's love, mercy, and forgiveness.

One of my favorite things about this book was that everything wasn't perfect. With God things aren't always perfect, sometimes we struggle, sometimes things happen that are out of our control, but if we have faith, and trust in Him he can use the most desperate seeming situations for His glory. That's exactly what happens in this book, they encounter some pretty difficult trials, but Andrea not only remains faithful, but grows stronger in her faith through her trials. 

This is a book that will challenge you to view your trials and you relationship with God in a new light, and those are the best kinds of books, in my opinion. I find a lot of "Christian books" are just Christian on the surface, this wasn't the case here, it was really refreshing to read something that was just a genuinely good work of fiction.

I give this book five stars, and I've already read it twice!

You can buy it: