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October Song:   [Paperback]

Beverly Lewis
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Oct. 1 2001
From newlyweds Katie and Dan living in the shadow of the shunning, to Rachel and Philip embracing parenthood even as
he acclimates to Amish life as an outsider... From the courtship of Lydia Cottrell and her betrothed, Levi King, to Sarah Cain, now a wife and mother struggling to bridge her own life with that of the People... October Song is overflowing with the simpler things of life that make a Lewis novel an unforgettable journey into the depths of the human heart.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

It's a family reunion of sorts in Lewis's newest offering, a story collection in three parts to update her devotees on the progress of the Amish and "fancy Englischer" characters in her previous novels, all held together by the common thread of their Pennsylvania Dutch country setting. "Hickory Hollow" describes Katie and Daniel's wedded bliss (The Heritage of Lancaster County series) and Katie's overtures toward her family and church friends, who have shunned her. We find the characters from The Postcard, Rachel and her husband, Philip (a former "fancy Englischer"), settled into family life in Bird-in-Hand. Philip struggles to gain acceptance from his Amish peers as he helps to fight a fire and tries his hand at a barn raising. In "Grasshopper," we are brought up to speed on Lydia's courtship by Levi (from The Redemption of Sarah Cain). Although the book is touted as "perfect for Lewis fans and new readers," it would be a tough introduction for someone unfamiliar with her work. The dialect "wonderful-gut," "redding," "perty" and "jah" can make the reading as slow as molasses for the uninitiated. One wonders why each of these vignettes wasn't a full-fledged sequel; it feels a bit like Lewis threw three unfinished novels into one book. But Lewis fans will be pleased to find the same consistent writing they've come to enjoy, and to catch glimpses of how their favorite characters are faring. (Oct.)Forecast: Although many critics find Lewis's Amish-themed novels as overly sweet as shoofly pie, her fans are loyal and legion. More than three million copies of her books are now in print. Her followers will enjoy this, jah.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Lewis returns to Lancaster County with a collection of short stories that revisit characters from The Shunning, The Postcard, and other titles in the "Lancaster County Books" series. As she catches readers up on the lives of Katie and Dan, Bishop John and Mary, Rachel and Philip, Sarah Cain, and many more, Lewis shows the diversity of Christian beliefs in this community and the effect that choosing to follow God has had on the families divided by different beliefs. These vignettes of the Amish and the English (as the Amish call the non-Amish) will find a welcome home in all collections with a strong Lewis readership.
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A Delightful Read! Jan. 23 2002
The book seems to tie loose ends as well as continue the stories begun in the books The Shunning, The Postcard, and The Redeption of Sarah Cain. In Hickory Hollow, the first of these warmhearted tales, Katie Lapp is ready to celebrate her first wedding anniversary with her husband Dan. In the midst of this happiness though, lingers the sorrow and shame of her shunning from the Old Order Amish of Hickory Hollow where she and Dan grew up. They have found salvation in Jesus Christ and are active and content in their new Mennonite church. However, the couple is forbidden to visit with family and friends due to the "Bann"- excommunication-imposed on them for going "fancy". Katie's biggest regret is the loss of her relationship with her "Dat"-her father. Can she ever repair the damage done to her family?
In part two entitled Bird-In-Hand, ex-journalist, Philip Bradley, must learn the ways of his new faith, with the help of his wife Rachel and the community. Being originally from New York, this is no easy task. He finds that simply dressing the part and believing in the Church is not enough. He must obey the unwritten code of conduct-the "Ordnung", to prove himself truly one of "the People". After a thoughtless blunder he is determined to prove to the skeptical Moses Raber that he is not just another soul-searching "Englischer"-outsider-but has truly accepted "Plain" living.
Grasshopper Level is the last story in this collection. Sarah Cain must, with the help of her newfound faith, learn to cope with her career and the care of her late sister's five children. Raising the children Amish in an English household has not been easy.
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3.0 out of 5 stars When's the next sequel? Dec 15 2001
While it's great to find out more about the characters of 6 previous books, none of the 3 sections seem finished. "Hickory Hollow" is about Dan & Katie Fisher's marriage; it sometimes focuses on other characters, but ends without really finishing the story,and the book never returns to those people (i.e., will Katie and Dan be allowed to visit more freely with their Amish families and friends?). "Bird-in-Hand" centers on Phillip Bradley's attempts to please his Amish neighbors; the man giving him the most trouble has barely become civil to him when the story is over! In "Grasshopper Level," Sarah Cain-Ford asks Katie Fisher to sew new clothes for her Amish charges; I'd really like to see them develop more of an acquaintance. There really should be another book, because all 3 sections pretty much SCREAM for more information!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Disapointing May 30 2002
By A Customer
When I first saw this book in the library, I was overjoyed because I love the previous novels that "October Song" is based on. Yet, as I started reading the novel, much to my disapointment, I found that each story was not very complete. The story of Katie and Dan, for example, ended when the plot was finally developing.
I have read many of Beverly Lewis's books and each has its own originality in its atempt to inform readers about Jesus' message and the Amish people. Yet, this was the first book that didn't accomplish either goal.
I am very disapointed to say that "October Song" had a very simple, predictable, and boring plot. I would only recommend this novel to anyone who has read Beverly Lewis's previous stories and would like to learn what happens next with the hope that a real sequel would soon be written and published.
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I would definitely rethink my rating if Beverly Lewis had made each part another whole book, especially about Katie and Dan. They certainly deserve another sequel to continue the Shunning series. As for Philip and Rachel from Postcard/Crossing fame, another book surely is coming. The last part of this book brings back Sarah Cain. While her story is mostly about her new family of children, the author does manage a nice little twist by showing us the heart of Sarah now and combining characters from more than one past series/book. I think there is more in the offing. At least I can hope.
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