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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Plain Wisdom book review

Plain Wisdom, by Cindy Woodsmall & Miriam Flaud
From the back cover: "Best-selling novelist Cindy Woodsmall might seem to have little in common with Miriam Flaud, a woman immersed in the culture of Old Order Amish. But with nine children and almost 60 years of marriage between them, Cindy and Miriam both have found the secrets to facing life with strength and grace. Whether enduring financial setbacks, celebrating new babies and times of prosperity, grieving the crushing losses in the deaths of family and friends, or facing disappointments with their respective communities—through it all they find guidance for each day by looking to God.  

With poignant recollections, unexpected insights, and humorous tales, the two women welcome you into their unique friendship.  You’ll also gain a rare glimpse into the traditions and ways of the Amish as Miriam recalls special occasions and shares family recipes throughout the book.

Plain Wisdom is a heartwarming celebration of God, womanhood, and the search for beauty that unites us all. So grab your cup and your quilt and settle in for a soul-comforting read with Plain Wisdom."

To tell the truth, I had a really hard time getting through this book.  And I think I know why. It's because this isn't the type of book you just sit and read.   (But I had to, since this is a book I got for free in exchange for a review through my Blogging for Books program.)  This is the type of book you open up when you are exhausted, discouraged or just need a pick-me-up.  It's a lovely book...just not a book you sit and read cover to cover.  It's not a story, it's a series of vignettes from the lives of two women.  Towards the end of the book, one of the authors says that they wanted this book to feel like a quiet sharing of thoughts and experiences between friends.  And I think they were largely successful.
It was heart warming, to use a cliched term, to read about the struggles and triumphs of others, and their search for faith in the midst of it all, whether that be in a modern lifestyle or one trying to live the Plain ways.
Just a reminder that we're not so very different after all, where ever we come from, who ever we are.
The only issue I have (and maybe it's silly) is the title.  Calling your own words "Wisdom" just seems a little...self-important perhaps.  And I know that was certainly not their intent.  I'm just sayin' is all.
Overall, it's a nice read.  Just one that should be meandered through at a leisurely pace.
Four out of five stars.

And as mentioned, I did receive this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group in exchange for this review.
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