About the Book
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An old fence separates a modern community from their Amish neighbors, until a little boy opens the gate and breaks down barriers between them. Main characters, Matt and Eli, find friendship, hope, and a future through a mutual need, which creates an opportunity for them to learn to understand each other. Eli and his little sisters will touch your heart by Whispering to Horses.
About the Author
Thomas Nye, author of the Amish Horses Book Series, Lives near an Amish community where he grew to know and respect his Amish neighbors. During grade school Thomas developed an interest in history and loved reading anything he could find about the 1800s. His love of farm, history, and horses all came together in real-life experiences with his Amish friends, who also happen to share his Christian faith. He purchased draft horses from Amish farmers in his neighborhood and set out to learn the art of working with horses in harness. After years of buying, selling, and trading work horses with Amish farmers in his community, Thomas had many wonderful memories of those experiences. His novels based on those adventures. Learn more about Thomas Nye on his website.
Guest Post from Thomas Nye
Last spring, I visited numerous Amish communities throughout the state of Indiana. My original goal was to bring awareness of my Amish Horses book series to the Amish and tourists in that region. As I traveled down quiet country roads, my heart was overwhelmed by beautiful farm scenes. Conversations with Amish families, and especially Amish children, brought a new awareness and inspiration to me. Springtime and its rich aromas flooded my senses and filled my heart with a story, Whispering to Horses.
Whispering to Horses is a very short novel which spans several generations. It is the story of two families that live side-by-side for years, and yet are strangers to each other. A fence that was installed to keep livestock apart has become a dividing line, separating Amish from their non-Amish neighbors. Years ago, when putting in the fence, an Amishman remembered his grandfather’s advice, almost prophetically, “… a gate opens the way for help in time of need.” Generations later, a gentle Amish boy named Eli, seems to have inherited his great-great-grandfather’s wisdom, as he opens the gate and communication between neighbors.
Kalona, Iowa has been my home for the past 35 years. Living in an Amish/Mennonite community, I have experienced many situations exactly like the one described in this book. It is so easy for us to look over a fence and have a disdain for people we don’t know, or understand. Sometimes, a little child can use their simple wisdom to break through our misconceptions, and soften our crusty opinions. In my hundreds of visits to Amish farms, it has been the children that have surprised me most. Even though English is their second language, Amish children speak with wisdom that has become a treasure to me, and I want to share it with you. I hope the story of Whispering to Horses opens your eyes, and brings back memories of your own childhood, when we all shared that simple wisdom.
This is a new author to me and I really enjoyed how he described things so vividly. He made the story come to life by writing with such beauty and details. I could feel the light breeze on my face and hear the horses as they worked in the fields. What magnificent horses they were so sleek and strong as they went about their daily chores.
Matt has inherited a house that he is not pleased with at all. He can't stand the smell from the farmland next door. It is an Amish family that works the land and for some reason that irritates him. His character is angry at the world it seems. His plan is to sell the house as quick as he can and get far away from the Amish family and country living. Matt is not someone I would enjoy being around with his horrible attitude . Will something happen to change his mind about moving? Will his heart soften towards the Amish family?
Eli is Matt's neighbor and really works hard everyday. Matt takes notice of this young man and his work ethic. Matt realizes that Eli could make his yard beautiful and attract buyers . Eli is hired to landscape Matt's yard and is eager to start . I loved the interaction between Matt and Eli. As their friendship developed, Matt seemed to not be as angry. The story is beautifully written and at the beginning of the book the author gives us a little history of the two houses. Long ago Matt's grandfather was friends with the Amish family that lived in the house Eli and his family now live in. They decided to put in a gate so it would be easy to get to each other if there was ever a need.
"Good fences make good neighbors, but a gate opens the way for help in time of need." Oh how I loved that sentence. How many of us have blocked gates so we wouldn't be bothered by other? Did we miss opportunities that God had for us?
The story has so many messages throughout that I hated to see it end. Memories are wonderful to have when they remind you of a happy time and the story touched on that with such grace. There are a few surprises in the story that really blends well with the theme of the book. I hope you get a chance to read this short book and feel the warmth of a story that brings hope, contentment and peace.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit for an honest review.
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June 9: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner
June 10: Cindy’s Book Reviews
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To celebrate his tour, Thomas is giving away an entire set of his Amish Horses Series! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/9b7f