A New Home for Lily
By Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher
Released: February 2013
Genre: Middle Grade
Genre: Middle Grade
I was pleased to discover that I had won a copy of A New Home for Lily through the Goodreads First Reads program. I’ve been entering Amish book giveaways on the site for several months now and this was the first one I won!
A New Home for Lily is the second installment in The Adventures of Lily Lapp series. While this book can be read as a stand alone novel, I chose to borrow the first book, Life with Lily, from the library and I highly recommend reading the books in order to take as much away from the story as possible. This story is a middle grade read, ranging from ages eight to twelve, but I think it would be a great family read and is even enjoyable for adults as well. While the story might be told from the perspective of young Lily, she certainly doesn’t deal with childish problems and the story can keep all ages entertained.
A New Home for Lily opens with the Lapp family moving from New York to their new home in Cloverdale, Pennsylvania. While Lily has a few things to look forward to (her grandparents will live not too far away and she already has one new friend, Beth), she also struggles to adjust to a smaller and, in her frank opinion, uglier home, fiendish billy goats, troublemaking Aaron Yoder, and meddlesome Effie Kauffman. On top of that, there are several changes in the church that Lily has to adjust to. So, life for Lily suddenly becomes much more difficult than she could have ever imagined.
In between schoolhouse hijinks, cooking disasters, and an unexpected new arrival, Lily learns several lessons about others, about her faith, and about herself.
I’ve been a fan of Amish and Christian fiction for many years now and have read a wide variety of authors when it comes to the subject. (Lewis, Woodsmall, Fisher, and Brunstetter just to name a few.) While all the books are engaging and lovely reads, oftentimes they focus on romance. I, for one, am a sucker for a good romance novel, but it was refreshing to see a new perspective in this literary niche. While the point of view of the novel is from an eight year old girl, I think that the change was engaging and offered insight into the Amish from a bright, new light. Kinsinger and Fisher write with surprising clarity when it comes to little Lily and the innocence from which the book is told is partially what makes it so charming. The audience is learning, right along with Lily, exactly what it means to be Amish and to have a strong faith and respect for others.
I really like that this genre had branched out and is trying to appeal to younger readers. I wish that I would have had something like this series when I was growing up. In addition to the nice story, there are sweet line drawings that serve as illustrations and even a list of frequently asked questions concerning the Amish in the back. I think it would be a great introduction for children to the Amish culture, too.
I loved this series so far and will be eagerly awaiting future installments.