Title: Emma of Aurora (Change and Cherish series 1-3)
Review: This book is good. It is based on a true story about Emma Wagner Giesy. I enjoyed reading it. Because it is a series put into one very large book, I’ll break up the review into the three separate books.
The first book, A Clearing in the Wild, was a little difficult for me to get into. It is about a girl named Emma who lives in a mostly German communal colony in the 1850’s in Missouri. I found it a bit tedious at first because I didn’t fully understand why people would choose to live in this type of setting. Once I got into it, however, I enjoyed participating in Emma’s journey west with the menfolk. She is one of the first to blaze a trail to the west for her colony. There are a few twists and turns and she is “such a girl” to me; in that she has mood swings, she has thoughts that she speaks when she probably shouldn’t, she does things for selfish reasons and she manipulates people. I enjoyed getting to know her unconventional character.
The second book: A Tendering in the Storm, was my favorite of the three books. Just when you think Emma finally has her feet under her, she gets knocked down. Like any good story, this one has a real climax. She really struggles in Washington and tries her hardest to do what she deems best for her and her family only to realize that it is futile. We watch her look within herself as she finds that she needs others in her life. I enjoyed her turn from selfish girl to accepting woman.
The third book, A Mending at the Edge, was my least favorite of the three books. Emma takes charge of her life and she moves on to seek the help and comfort of colony ways. I feel like I waited throughout the third book for something to happen and it never really did. She tries to find her place within the colony but still struggles as she stands out. She did change the course of how women were treated and she pushes the importance of women’s place within the religious community, but it was so gradual that you could almost miss it. I wanted her to do something daring, something amazing, but she never did. I wanted an0ther climactic moment like the second book had had.
Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. Seeing as it is based on a true story, I can see that their maybe wasn’t much to add that wouldn’t be fictional. She turned into a person who did what was right without looking for recognition or fame; unlike the girl from the first book and I liked her transformation.
All in all, it was a good story. If you view it as a whole and not three separate pieces it is rather amazing what this one woman did. It was interesting and it was fun to read. Looking at the series as a whole, I rather liked it. It is a good story about fighting for what you want and understanding your place in the world. Other than carrying around a giant book (which I didn’t love), It was fun to read. I have and would recommend this to others to read.
Thank you Heather for this review.
Published: Published November 5th 2013 by WaterBrook Press
Page Count: 1168
Quick Review: 4 out 5 stars as a whole -
Why I Read this Title: Sent by the publisher for review.
Synopsis: The Change and Cherish trilogy, based on the true story of Emma Wagner Giesy, now available in one volume:
A Clearing in the Wild
When Emma’s outspoken ways and growing skepticism lead to a clash with the 1850s Bethel, Missouri colony’s beloved leader, she finds new opportunities to pursue her dreams of independence. But as she clears a pathway West to her truest and deepest self, she discovers something she never expected: a yearning for the warm embrace of community.
A Tendering in the Storm
Determined to raise her children on her own terms, Emma suddenly finds herself alone and pregnant with her third child, struggling to keep her family secure in the remote coastal forest of the Washington Territory. As clouds of despair close in, she must decide whether to continue in her own waning strength or to humble herself and accept help from the very people she once so eagerly left behind.
A Mending at the Edge
As a mother, daughter, sister, and estranged wife, Emma struggles to find her place inside—and outside—the confines of her religious community. Emma reaches out to others on the fringe, searching for healing and purpose. By blending her unique talents with service to others, she creates renewed hope as she weaves together the threads of family, friends, and faith.
Author Information: A writer weaving the stories of our lives - beautiful, relevant, and written for you.