A quilt shop brings Amish and Englisch together, and trouble follows...
After a thwarted romance, Katie Miller starts over by moving to Pleasant Valley and opening a quilt shop. Soon Amish and Englisch turn the store into a lively spot...to the consternation of Caleb Brand, who crafts furniture next door. Then Katie's sister joins her, to escape rumors of her wild rumspringa, and Katie feels the burden of responsibility for a restless teenager. Even worse, her efforts to bring more people to Main Street arouse resistance among local businesses. When acts of vandalism threaten Katie's shop, she turns to Caleb for comfort, and their friendship deepens. But will Caleb's secret past prevent him from embracing a future with Katie? Or will their fragile romance develop the strength to last a lifetime?
Change does not suit Caleb Brand. His handmade furniture store is his haven and the location has always housed male owned stores until now when landlord, Bishop Mose decides to rent to Katie Miller’s quilt shop. It’s not that he has anything against her he just did not want her next door. The area is the Pennsylvania Dutch Amish country and the characters quite interesting. Speaking with Bishop Mose, Caleb makes his feelings known as to his preference for a hardware store rather than quilt store as his new neighbor.
Katie Miller enters the furniture store for the first time asking if anyone would like to see what she and the other women have accomplished in setting it up. As things fall into place and her opening day happens, her mother arrives with her two sisters and states one would remain with her instead of coming home. Katie would not supervise her 16-year-old sister who seems to get getting into too much trouble at home and her mother has given her no choice, she stays. Pleasant Valley will definitely change as a result of their two newest additions. Coming to this place after watching her future husband marry someone else, Katie finds comfort in her new business even though many resent her presence and the change of clientele that comes with her arrival. Rhoda and Caleb’s young niece Rebecca seems to becoming fast friends to his dislike. Katie befriends his mother Naomi and hopes to develop a business relationship with her selling her handmade quilts. As Katie learns the truth about Caleb’s past and he more about hers will they form a bond or will they remain further apart? With the help of some of the shop owners, Katie starts a weekly quilting group and things start to come into place but for how long? Many feel more tourist trade would be nice; others do not want so many strangers in their community. As the community works together helping each business grow both Kate and her sister Rhoda learn the true meaning of forgiveness, understanding and love. Both have been wronged by others and both have been drawn together as their parents decided on Rhoda’s fate and Katie needs to decide on her own.
Flooding causes a problem as the whole town bans together to help each other and Katie tries to understand her feelings for Caleb as truths about her past come facing her in the present and one women’s understanding and words bring two closer together as everyone needs to move forward and forget the past. Then someone decides to change the prices on the items in Katie’s shop, Rhoda sells her first quilt and learns the true meaning of family, trust and loyalty as someone takes her innocence for granted and the whole town learns much more about people, forgiveness and understanding. A childish prank and hurt feelings, gossip about one young girl and a friendship tested. Many learn some hard lessons and others have to learn to let things go. Truths are told, betrayals are revealed and a community comes together when one person is injured, vandals threaten Katie’s shop, Pennsylvania Dutch Days Sales is being promoted. Will it all work out for the people of Pleasant Valley? Can the Amish and the English blend and work together to create business for everyone? Who is behind the vandalism and spray-painting in several shops and what veiled threat is coming to light?
Author Marta Perry brings to light what happens when people from different cultures and backgrounds blend their ideas and work together to benefit their community. Working in the quilt classes, teaching both Becky and Rhoda the meaning of friendship, forgiveness and banning together when someone is out to destroy what they have tried to so hard to create. Katie Miller is facing her past as Caleb admits and finally faces his. Choices have to be made, many lines have been crossed and decisions will be made as to what will happen to those in Pleasant Valley. Fear is a terrible weapon as they some wait for the next bad thing to happen others try to rebuild. But, can they? What finally happens and brings them all together you have to learn for yourself. Many important lessons are learned; many important customs are related to the reader to help you understand the Amish traditions and ways. But, the one that stands out and makes this novel so outstanding are the lessons taught to the teens, adults and two people who truly learn the meaning of the word Forgiveness. As several teens are taught what happens when you take the wrong path and another learns the meaning of trust, we hope Pleasant Valley will bounce back from the things that happened because some did not understand the ways of others. I would definitely recommend Katie's Way.
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