Saturday, August 21, 2010

Running Around (And Such)-Linda Byler

Running Around (And Such)
Linda Byler
Good Book, May 2010, $13.99
ISBN: 9781561486885

A highly successful Amish businessman, the Glick family patriarch decides he wants to become a farmer so he takes his wife and children over their objections and moves from Jefferson County to Cameron County near the lands owned by his father and brother-in-law. Datt’s daughters Emma and Mandy adapt quickly and are expected to marry soon. The third offspring, teenage Lizzie struggles with adjusting, as she detests housework and cleaning baby messes.

However, musings about eligible boys take a back seat when mam becomes ill and hospitalized. Moaning over her woes and frightened for her mam and for her way from home job, sixteen years old Lizzie has to become responsible as she has to help clean the house and accept a job as a maid to bring in money so that Emma can begin filling her hope chest. As these activities take time away from her love of fast horses, Lizzie is attracted to the outsider egg delivery man. Complicating her confusion about boys is her best friend Stephen implying he apparently wants more than just being buddies.

This is an entertaining first book of the Lizzie Searches for Love contemporary Amish saga. Lizzie is a fascinating lead who acts like many teens lamenting their station in life and wondering if she will meet her soul mate soon; her temper adds freshness to the sub-genre as she is far from a prim and proper miss. The deep insider look at an Amish community and family enhances the tale although the transitions between the present and flashbacks into the past feel abrupt without warning. Still Linda Byler provides a wonderful unique glimpse into a teen growing up Amish.

Harriet Klausner

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