Title: Promise to Keep (The Promise of Sunrise Series #3)
Author: Elizabeth Byler Younts
My rating is 5 stars out of 5.
What way to end a series that begins with A Promise to Cherish followed by Promise to Return! As hard as it is for authors to conclude a series, for me as a reader it is hard too as I have loved the series and become attached to the characters. The last book focuses on the returning soldier Joe and his becoming familiar with the life outside of a war zone. Joe also has to learn to communicate with his deaf daughter and build trust with her again since he just left her with Esther, his wife’s cousin, after his wife’s death.
For years Esther has had to learn how to communicate with Daisy as well as help her with her emotions from losing her mom and her father’s desertion. Esther has been caring for people since she was a child herself along with people leaving her without any explanation or care. Esther must also deal with the fact that she is Amish and Joe is English. He expected Esther to raise Daisy in the ways of Englishers of which she is unfamiliar. There are memories that haunt Esther along with emotions she has kept locked away in her heart until her “dead” father suddenly shows up.
The author was raised as a child in the Amish life until her family decided to leave the Amish community. The inside knowledge the author shares makes her stories believable as well as captures the heart of readers. One theme is how soldiers need time to acclimate to daily life without war but with memories of war. There is an internal struggle going on inside Esther to understand what sin really is, what the church expects and one fails to do isn’t sin. The risk to love is hardest of all for Esther and Daisy too because of having experienced abandonment in their pasts.
All three books will not just entertain, but capture your heart and allow you to perhaps lose yourself for a while in the fictional setting or characters’ lives. Through it all, it is God who never leaves us. He alone heals us in the deepest parts of our hearts and souls. We have only to be still and know He is God.
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