Book Review: The Proving by Beverly Lewis

the proving beverly lewis book review

The synopsis on the back of the book:
Having left the Amish life for the English world, Amanda Dienner is shocked when she learns that her mother has passed and left her Lancaster County's most popular Amish bed-and-breakfast. The catch is she has to run it herself for one year, acting as hostess. Amanda accepts the terms, but coming home to people she left behind won't be easy.

  • Genre: Amish Fiction
  • Published: 09/2017
  • Pages: 446
  • Goodreads rating: 4.23
the proving beverly lewis book review
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
— 1 Corinthians 13:4

Why I Chose This Book

I have always wanted to read Amish fiction. I wanted to challenge myself to read something new so I picked up the newest book by Beverly Lewis. I also thought it would be a good read based on the synopsis. 

First Initial Thoughts

Mandy (Amanda) use to live the Amish life. Now she lives in a small town with a church family. One day she receives a letter in the mail from her estranged family writing that her mother has passed. She then finds out she is now to inherit her mother's B&B. She must keep it running for a year with a profit. Mandy has not been home for years and has not communicated with them. Mandy was deeply in love with Josiah but when she found out that he really had feelings for her twin sister, she left the family. 

At first, I actually had a love-hate relationship with Mandy. I admired her for taking the step to take over the B&B and continue the family business. That takes a huge leap of faith! On the other hand at the beginning, she was quite cold towards her family. She was quite angry with her sister and wouldn't forgive her for the things she did. I can't imagine what it was like for Mandy before she left the Amish lifestyle, but after all that happened, I was hoping she would of at least tried to work on her relationship with her sister. 

Another person in the story, Trina, not a big character in the beginning but plays an important role later on. She won a mystery vacation from a travel agency. The agency takes her to places based on her personality and travel wishlist - every place is a complete surprise! One of those places is the exact B&B Mandy runs. At first, Trina annoyed me. One minute she was sweet and the next she was condescending and rude. She just made my head spin! But she was also deeply hurting inside.

Setting

Beverly does such a great job of immersing the reader in the Amish lifestyle. I am not too familiar with the Amish so I learned a lot while reading this book! She has a talent for really making you feel like you are there in the story alongside the characters. As I was reading, I wanted to go and see how beautiful the B&B was, if it existed! 

Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
— Ephesians 4:31-32

Final Thoughts

I really enjoyed reading my first Amish fiction book! 

Mandy soon learned that her cold-hearted actions got her nowhere. She learned that you can't do everything on your own. That it's ok to ask for help! I really enjoyed reading the journey of the characters. How they grew and developed as the story went on. I won't give too much away, but there is a lot of forgiveness and happy tears at the end. 

Trina played an important role. I think she was sent to the B&B for a purpose. To show Mandy on how to forgive and let go. Trina herself learns a few things as well. She also finds happiness at the end. What I liked is that even though she didn't like the circumstance she was in, she handled it well. 

This story is all about forgiveness. A family is what is most important. They are essentially all you have besides your friends. It also emphasizes the importance taking time to pray and spend time in the Word. The only gripe I had with the story is that it seemed a little too easy for Mandy. She did have some challenging moments, but she made it seem like owning a business was a breeze. Which I am sure it isn't! Just a little thing I noticed while reading. 

Would I Recommend? 

Yes, definitely! I think just about anyone would love this story. It's a great book to read when you need encouragement to forgive and spend time in the Word. 

 

I hope you enjoyed my first Amish book review! Be prepared to see more in the future! 

Have you read this book? If so, share your thoughts in the comments. :) 

the caffeinated bibliophile