Book Reviews · Recommendations

Anna’s Crossing (Amish Beginnings, 1) by Suzanne Woods Fisher

Anna’s Crossing
(Amish Beginnings, 1)
By: Suzanne Woods Fisher

Book Cover

Published: February 2015
Published by: Revell
Format Read: eBook, Kindle
Genre: Historical Fiction, Christian Fiction

Rating: 3.5/5


When Anna König first meets Bairn, the Scottish ship carpenter of the Charming Nancy, their encounter is anything but pleasant. Anna is on the ship only to ensure the safe arrival of her loved ones to the New World. Hardened by years of living at sea, Bairn resents toting these naïve farmers–dubbed “Peculiars” by deckhands–across the ocean. As delays, storms, illness, and diminishing provisions afflict crew and passengers alike, Bairn finds himself drawn to Anna’s serene nature. For her part, Anna can’t seem to stay below deck and far away from the aloof ship’s carpenter, despite warnings.

When an act of sacrifice leaves Anna in a perilous situation, Bairn discovers he may not have left his faith as firmly in the past as he thought. But has the revelation come too late?

Amish fiction favorite Suzanne Woods Fisher brings her fans back to the beginning of Amish life in America with this fascinating glimpse into the first ocean crossing as seen through the eyes of a devout young woman and an irreverent man. Blending the worlds of Amish and historical fiction, Fisher is sure to delight her longtime fans even as she attracts new ones with her superb and always surprise-filled writing.

Source: Goodreads

My Thoughts

In this series, Suzanne Woods Fisher chronicles the journey early Amish settlers took to the New World in the 1730’s. Readers follow a young woman named Anna, who travels with members of her community aboard a ship called “Charming Nancy” bound for Pennsylvania. As the only person in their group who spoke English, Anna acts as translator finding herself often dealing with Bairn, the ships carpenter and third in command.

Suzanne Woods Fisher is one of my favourite Amish fiction writers; a genre I have cherished reading in recent years. While I have read many historical fiction books in the Christian genre, this is the first I’ve read that follows this particular group.

I was interested in learning how the Amish faith differed in this time period, compared to other more commonly practiced religions. Along with their fellow Mennonite passengers they were known as “the peculiars”. The Amish of the 1700’s stood out in appearance, much like they do today sporting different beards and prayer caps. Although the author wrote of their peaceful and giving nature, I didn’t feel that their was much of a comparison told.

I have come to realize that most fiction in this genre centers around faith being tested. Usually one character is a strong believer, while the other struggles with it. Anna’s Crossing is no different, so I did find the story to be predictable, but I am happy to say that I still appreciated the message it tells.

I highly recommend Suzanne Woods Fisher’s Anna’s Crossing. I am looking forward to reading more about the early Amish settlers and how they began to plant their roots in the New World.

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