One Simple Wish

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When her maiden aunts give Eva an early Christmas present -- a small wooden box meant to be filled with the desire of her heart -- she finds herself praying for a stranger, a traveler who God will guide into a life of honor and faithfulness and honesty. I wish for this honorable man to be mine, she writes on a piece of paper and tucks it away in her prayer box.

A short time later a traveler shows up, hoping to rent a room over her aunt's bakery shop where Eva works, and she senses he is the man God led her to pray for. But because he has left his Amish community and embraced the ways of the Englisch, she knows he can never be hers. And yet . . .

Along with the very qualities Eva prayed for, Jacob Whittmer has come to town with dangerous secrets going back six years. As his past begins to come to light, he is no longer welcomed by the Amish community in Blossom Creek and must once again face a life on the run.

As disturbing events unfold, Eva makes difficult decisions that will affect her own future. Was she wrong about the desires of her heart? Will her prayers ever be answered? Or will she be forced to endure being shunned by the Amish community and the family she holds so dear?

The Characters

Being the eldest child often means having more responsibility. With four younger siblings, Sarah Beth has a firm understanding of the weight she must bear.

After the passing of her Grossmammi -- a loss almost as devastating as the one the King children endured 12 years earlier when both of their parents were killed in a harvesting accident -- Sarah Beth, 24, is left to look after her special needs sister, Cora, 17, and only brother, Toby, 14. As for her 12-year-old twin sisters, Lovina and Luann, other family members felt it would be best for the girls to live with relatives in another church district, decimating the King family once again.

Family is everything to Sarah Beth! And she is determined to get hers back together ... even if that means putting off her thoughts of courtship and starting a family of her own. But why does her heart beat wildly when she meets her handsome new neighbor, Elias Stutzman? Is she drawn to the allure of his deep blue eyes ... or maybe it is the secrets they are hiding?

Life has been anything but easy for Elias ... abandoned by his Mamm who jumped the fence to Englisch life when he was just a kid ... passed along from one distant relative to another ... running with the wrong group of "friends" who always kept him on the outer edge of their circle.

Now, at 29 years old, Elias longs to be accepted for the hardworking man he is today and leave his past behind him. Hickory Meadows, known for its welcoming folks and strong sense of community, could give him the home he has always dreamed of having -- and possibly a family of his own.

But the shocking damage done to his buggy shop soon after his arrival makes it very clear that he is not welcome. Elias knows only a few people, so who would try to run him out of the church district? Maybe it was just a bunch of bored kids. Perhaps he pushed Sara Beth, his attractive new neighbor with the feisty spirit, a little too far. Or has someone from Elias's past discovered his new life?