It’s not easy being the bishop’s daughter, especially for Lydie Stoltzfus. She’s not like other Amish girls, as much as she wishes she were. The only thing she does well is disappoint others. Leaving her family and church seems unbearable, but staying might be worse.
Knowing Lydie is “between” jobs, the local doctor asks her to fill in at the front desk for a few months. To Lydie, this is a boon. It gives her time to figure out how she’s going to say goodbye to her neighbor, Nathan Yoder–the main reason she needs to leave Stoney Ridge. Nathan claims he’s in love with her, but she knows she’s not good enough for him. If in doubt, Nathan’s father reminds her frequently.
As Dok spends time with Lydie, she recognizes symptoms of an uncommon disorder among the Amish. She offers treatment for Lydie. But will it be enough to make her stay? Or has help come too late?
My thoughts: I enjoyed this unique story that gives readers a glimpse of what it might be like to have ADHD, especially in the Amish community where they aren't as quick to test for things like that. My heart broke a bit for Lydie, as she struggled with feeling like a failure for being different. This is a gem of a story with a solid message and wonderful characters.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.
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About the Author
Suzanne Woods Fisher is a Christy finalist, a Carol Award winner, a two-time ECPA Book of the Year finalist, and the Publishers Weekly, ECPA, CBA, bestselling author of more than thirty books. Her genres include contemporary and historical romances, Amish romance, and women’s fiction. She and her husband live in a small town in California, where everyone knows everyone else, knows what they are doing and why. Most folks act a little nervous around Suzanne because they usually wind up in one of her novels. She has four grown children and enough grandchildren to keep her young. Visit Suzanne at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com
More from Suzanne
Easily Distracted? 8 Strategies to Help Stay Focused
Anything but Plain is a story about a young Amish woman with undiagnosed ADHD. Lydie Stoltzfus feels like a square peg in a round hole. She just doesn’t fit in and, to make matters worse, she’s the bishop’s daughter. At this point, the only path forward she can see is to leave Stoney Ridge. Leave her church, her friends, her family, her neighbor Nathan Yoder. It’s better to leave, Lydie decides, than to keep disappointing everyone she cares about. I won’t say anymore so that I don’t spoil the story for you.
ADHD is not a common diagnosis among the Amish and many might assume it’s not a real thing. Of course, they’re mistaken. ADHD is a real thing. While I don’t have ADHD, I do have many friends and family members who have been diagnosed. It’s challenging! And something we should all take seriously. Here’s why:
Evidence is mounting that a growing dependence on digital devices could be giving all of us some ADHD-like symptoms. Have you wondered if distractibility is becoming a problem for you? Or has a spouse or child or friend remarked on how often you pick up your phone to check a text message or scroll Instagram? You might remain physically present but your mind has wandered away. For me, the answer is, regrettably, yes.
There’s a recurring phrase in Anything but Plain that comes from an old-fashioned farming term: Walking the beans. Literally, it means weeding by hand. Figuratively, it means paying attention to our priorities. To pull the weeds before they take root.
One of the takeaway lessons of this book is to “walk the beans” of technology’s role in my life. So…I’ve been working on a few strategies. When I practice, I see a difference. Life is calmer. More manageable.
So…I wanted to pass these tips along to you. (If you have little children, these might not work for you. Not when your little ones are awake, anyway.) Hopefully, you’ll find them to be useful, and maybe spark some strategies of your own.
The Avid Reader, October 7
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 7
She Lives To Read, October 8
The Write Escape, October 8
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 9
Vicky Sluiter, October 9
lakesidelivingsite, October 10
Texas Book-aholic, October 10
Lighthouse-Academy, October 11
Simple Harvest Reads, October 11 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)
Locks, Hooks and Books, October 11
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 12
Inklings and notions, October 12
Southern Gal Loves to Read, October 12
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 13
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 14
Blogging With Carol, October 14
Elly Gilbert, October 14
deb’s Book Review, October 15
For Him and My Family, October 15
Holly’s Book Corner, October 15
Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 16
Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 16
Splashes of Joy, October 16
Empowermoms, October 17
SusanLovesBooks, October 17
Mary Hake, October 17
Bigreadersite, October 18
A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 18
Blossoms and Blessings, October 18
Cats in the Cradle Blog, October 19
Pause for Tales, October 19
Spoken from the Heart, October 19
Little Homeschool on the Prairie, October 20
Cover Lover Book Review, October 20
The Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 20
To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.