Saturday, September 29, 2012

Book Review: Life With Lily

Life with Lily. Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher. 2012. Revell. 288 pages.

It was still dark outside. Lily tried to keep up with Papa's long strides as he carried little Joseph across the yard to where the horse and buggy were tied to the hitching post. 

There were many things I just LOVED about this new children's series by Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher. In fact, it may just be my favorite Amish book ever. Perhaps because the heroine is so young, perhaps because it captures the world through her eyes so well. (When the novel begins, I believe she is around six, it follows at least one if not two years, so she might be closer to eight at the end of it.) I loved Lily. I loved Lily's family. I loved chronicling the family's life together on their farm. It reminded me of some of my favorite books growing up: the Grandma books by Arleta Richardson and the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. (And there aren't that many books out there that are capable of that. So I think it's a great compliment.) Some chapters focused on the family, others on life on the farm, others on new experiences. (For example, getting a new baby brother, getting a pony, making cheese, making butter, baking bread, washing clothes, starting school, the ordeal of getting her hair done each week (washed, brushed, dried), visiting grandparents, spending time with aunts, uncles, and cousins, making new friends, moving, etc.) I also just loved the focus on friendship. Lily has one friend, Mandy Mast, who always, always, always gets her into trouble. And Lily never means to get into trouble, she's just not learned to recognize the signs of what may lead to trouble. But Lily does eventually make a good friend who is better for her. There are a few places in the text where readers are reminded that the story is modern or contemporary. (For example, there's a chapter in the book about a superintendent who tries to introduce the theory of evolution to the school--THAT does not go well. And then there is the chapter where her first teacher has a buggy accident with a car.) But for those looking for a pioneer-like book for those who can't get enough of Little House in the Big Woods, this may satisfy.

I would definitely recommend this one.

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible


Anonymous said...

This sounds great! I read Amish Peace by Suzanne Woods Fisher so I am sure I would like more of her stuff. Thanks for this review!

Suzanne said...

Just popping by to read your wonderful review of "Lily!" Thank you so much for giving it a big thumbs up. I have loved writing this series with Mary Ann...we're just wrapping up #4 now and I already miss it. Thank you for helping to spread the word! Warmly, Suzanne