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Customer Reviews for Howard Books Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1

Howard Books Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1

When World War II breaks out, Miriam's fianci, Henry, is drafted and sent to a conscientious objector camp. But when Henry feels called to fight on the front lines, he goes against the Amish church to follow God's will-forcing Miriam to choose between the rules of her religion and the leading of her heart.

It's 1943 and Miriam Coblentz and Henry Mast are nearing their wedding day when the unthinkable happens-Henry is drafted. However, since he is a part of the pacifist Amish tradition, Henry is sent to a conscientious objector Civilian Public Service camp. When he leaves for the work camp, his gaping absence turns Miriam's life upside down. Little does she know that it's only the beginning.

Average Customer Rating:
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4.8
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16 out of 16100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Review 1 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent Story

Date:June 3, 2014
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Henry McLaughlin
Location:Saginaw, TX
Age:Over 65
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This debut novel is one of the best first novels I have ever read. Elizabeth Byler Younts weaves her historical romance with the rich flavor the Amish community. She reveals the Amish life without lecturing or overloading her work with research. She does it beautifully though the characters she creates and the story world she builds. As a reader, you know these people and understand why they are the way they are. Set in World War II, this romance places the heroine, Miriam Coblentz, in the throes of a difficult decision: to stay with her people or join with her betrothed, Henry Mast, who has made the decision to fight for his country--a choice that violates so many of the Amish beliefs. This is the tale of how the couple comes to this moment and the choices they must makes a result.
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Review 2 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Promise to Return

Date:March 17, 2014
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Its About Time Mamaw
Location:Cleveland, Texas
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Miriam Coblentz can't seem to stop thinking about her intended Henry Mast. Henry has been drafted into the military and sent to a camp for conscientious objectors. The Amish have always been pacifist. When he returns home Miriam is shocked to find out he has decide to leave the camp and join the military and the war. He feels as if God has called him to fight in World War II. Miriam can not turn her back on her family and most importantly the her Amish beliefs. Will she turn her back on Henry the man she loves?
I have read many Amish books but this is the first where I get a better look at the Pacifist side during World War II. To me it is apparent men are bred to defend their families and country. Yet I understand the Amish's belief and the pacifist. Women want to nurture and prevent harm coming to anyone. But in times of war we have no choice but to defend. The author has done a wonderful job in depicting the Amish stand of remaining pacifist.
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from Howard Publishing/Simon & Schuster for review. I was in no way compensated for this review. This review is my honest opinion.
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Review 3 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Not Your Typical Amish Fiction!

Date:February 2, 2014
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dianaFlow
Location:W Columbia, SC
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
In Promise to Return, author Elizabeth Byler Younts has crafted an unforgettable, soul-stirring tale of the consequences of sin, betrayal, and obedience in one Amish community during the turbulent World War II era.
Miriam and Henry are deeply in love and on the advent of their wedding Henry is drafted. Since the Amish are pacifists, Henry is sent to a Civilian Public Service camp, while Miriam patiently awaits the day he can come home and resume his life with her. But Henry commits the ultimate betrayal in Miriam's and the eyes of his Amish community when he decides to enlist. Hearing the plight and atrocities suffered by the Jews, Henry feels called by God to help fight for their cause. Will Henry's obedience cause him to be shunned by the Amish and drive Miriam to the arms of another?
This author is amazing and I can't wait to read the next book in this series! Ms. Younts was brought up in the Amish faith which lends so much authenticity to this novel. The characters are flawed and not sugar coated as in many Amish novels. Between the pages of this book lie sin, lusts, betrayal, lack of faith, and many other faults that define us as humans. I literally could not put this book down and read 75% of it in one sitting; it was just that good! Order your copy today!
Thank you to Net Galley and Simon & Schuster for a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
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Review 4 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

I couldn't stop reading it!

Date:January 31, 2014
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TamiH
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I really enjoyed this book! I didn’t want to stop reading. My heart ached with Miriam and I totally related to her struggle to want to please and obey her parents and yet still follow her heart. I don’t need to be Amish to relate to the heart’s longing to please our parents and their way of looking at the world. Miriam was so brave. Much braver than I would have been…waiting for letters for months without knowing if Henry was dead or alive…I would have gone crazy with worry. I worry when I don’t get a text back in the same day! I think the author did a great job of exploring Miriam’s world, carrying her story forward, and bringing her to a resolution. I look forward to reading more in this series!
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Review 5 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Wonderfully crafted debut novel!

Date:December 30, 2013
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Passion4Heart
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Promise to Return is the debut novel of author Elizabeth Byler Younts, and my very first experience with this author as well. I went into this book with high hopes, having heard great things about her writing style and her technique in weaving together a very enticing and beautiful story. Now that I have read this book, I can officially say that I agree 100%! Promise to Return is a fresh new style for Amish fiction, with a look into the Amish lifestyle that is different from any other book I have read yet. Mrs. Younts brings such a delicate truth to this genre with twists and turns that definitely keep the reader on their toes.
Personally, my favorite part of this novel was Henry Mast. His character spoke to my heart in ways that will stay with me for a long time. His deep faith in God and hardcore belief in what he was doing was inspiring to me. Out of all of the characters in this book, and all the events written, Henry’s part in it shone bright in comparison. Because of this remarkably written character, I will never forget this beautifully crafted story.
If you’re looking for a fresh look at the Amish that holds nothing back, this is definitely the book for you. Elizabeth Byler Younts hit the nail on the head perfectly with this one, and I have very high hopes for her future in this business.
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Review 6 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 9, 2013
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Susan
Location:Chaptico, MD
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
How can Miriam choose between her church and family and the man she loves? She has always obeyed the rules of the Amish church and never considered abandoning her way of life. All she ever wanted was to be a wife and a mother--Henry's wife and mother of Henry's children.
Then World War II ended all those hopes and dreams. First Henry is sent to a Civilian Public Service camp for conscientious objectors. Then he feels God calling him to enlist in the army. How can an Amish man choose to fight? How can the woman he loves reconcile her love for her family and people with her love for a man who chose a different path, a man she believes in with all her heart?
Elizabeth Byler Yount's historical romance is well written and moving. The reader will weep and worry and wonder along with the characters in their struggles of faith, loyalty, and love.
Fans of historical fiction, Amish fiction, and/or romance will not be disappointed in this new novel. All three elements are included making the novel appealing to all. Thank you, Elizabeth for a wonderful book. Looking forward to Book 2!
Susan Simpson, author
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Review 7 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:October 22, 2013
If you think you don't like Amish fiction, I would urge you to give this one a try before you write the whole genre off. To say it is different from the run of the mill Amish fiction book is an understatement.
I never gave a thought to how World War II affected the Amish. I just assumed that since they were conscientious objectors that they would be exempt from service and then just carry on with their lives. In actuality, when an Amish man was drafted he had to go serve in a Civilian Public Service camp. Now if that isn't interesting enough, think about what would happen if an Amish man felt like God was telling him to join the Army.
That is the premise of this book. Henry Mast who has always been a caring and upstanding member of the Amish community has the deep conviction that God is requiring him to enlist and serve his country. This decision has very far reaching repercussions. He was just weeks away from marrying Miriam Coblentz when he was drafted. She was content to wait for him when he was at the CPS camp but now that he is going against the beliefs of the Amish community that she loves where does that leave her? What about Henry's parents and siblings? How will they withstand this shame that Henry has brought upon their family? What about when/if Henry returns from his service? How will he fit back in to the community?
This is an absolutely fascinating read. When I first began reading it I wasn't sure that I was going to like it at all. I am part of a very proud military family and the whole conscientious objector theme at the beginning of the novel just didn't set well with me. But the farther I got into the story the more I liked it. Elizabeth Younts' writing is captivating. Most likely this is because she is not only from an Amish family but she is an air force officer's wife. Both of those aspects bring an authenticity to the story.
For all the Amish fiction lovers out there this is a must read. For all the skeptics this is one to give a try . . . I think you'll be pleasantly surprised. I'm looking forward to book two in the series. It will contain the story of Eli Brenneman from Promise to Return, as he serves in the CPS at a mental asylum. Sounds like another unique book in this genre!
I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
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Review 8 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Listening To God

Date:October 14, 2013
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MaureenT
Location:Syracuse NY
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
This was a different kind of Amish book whereas it took place during WW II. Written by a new author who happened to have grown up Amish, this story gave more insight into areas of Amish rules and culture than I had ever read before. In fact, I wonder if my father, who served in WW II, had even heard of Amish back then. Anyway, the characters, Henry and Miriam, were about to visit the bishop to begin planning their wedding when Henry got drafted. Being Amish and a conscientious objector, he went to a work camp to serve out his time. But even though that was all that was required of him, he told Miriam that God had spoken to him and led him to enlist. Miriam now struggled, for most of the rest of the book, with a decision to follow her Amish faith and culture, or to choose to love and follow Henry. I really enjoyed this book at first. Then it started to drag with what felt like unnecessary information. But soon it picked up again and I wanted to read all night. It is such a different Amish book, but so historically and culturally interesting. I do recommend this book.
I received this book through Howard Books, and was not required to give a positive review.
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Review 9 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Interesting Story

Date:October 9, 2013
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Amy C
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Promise to Return is about an Amish couple, Henry and Miriam. Henry and Miriam are engaged to be married during World War II. Miriam has to make a choice between following the Amish beliefs and her heart when Henry decides to enlist in the United States Army. Henry promises that he will return to Miriam and they will then marry. What choice will Miriam make? Love or staying on Amish?
I have to say this was definitely different from most Amish books I have read. I never even thought of the Amish during the World War II era. I found it really fascinating.
The middle of the book was a little slow to me but picked back up in the last quarter. I couldn't believe the ending. I was completely surprised by it. I would recommend this book for lovers of World War II history and Amish fiction. 4 stars.
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Review 10 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:October 8, 2013
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debwilson
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
It’s 1943, and Miriam Coblentz and Henry Mast are nearing their wedding day when the unthinkable happens—Henry is drafted. However, since he is a part of the pacifist Amish tradition, Henry is sent to a conscientious objector Civilian Public Service camp. When he leaves for the work camp, his gaping absence turns Miriam’s life upside down. Little does she know it’s only the beginning... When Henry returns home, he brings news that shakes Miriam and their Amish community to the core. Henry believes God has called him to enlist in the army and fight for his country, leaving her to make an important decision: whether to choose loyalty to the peaceful life she’s always known or her love for Henry. Two worlds collide in this unforgettable debut novel, providing a fascinating and rare look into Amish culture during World War II. While Henry is battling enemies across the ocean, Miriam struggles between her devotion to Henry and her love of the Amish way of life. One question is at the bottom of it all: will she follow the rules of her religion or the leading of her heart?
My Review:
While the Christian market is being flooded by the Amish genre in the last 16 years, this one is a chart topper. Filled with suspense and the authentic voice of someone who has grown up Amish, Younts write a not-to-be missed debut novel that gives us a glimpse of Amish culture during World War II. This is the kind of book that leaves you wanting more of this kind of setting, and the writing was stunning, remarkable and absolutely magnificent.
My favorite element of this novel was the portrayal of the angst that Miriam felt as she tries to decide whether or not to wait for Henry. I have to admit, I love novels that paints the hero and heroine at odds because of elements outside of their control; their parents, their beliefs, their situations, etc. I am a sucker for any story that keeps the lead characters from each other not by their desire, but by things they cannot change. This is a well written work that deserves recognition for what it is: a fresh look into the history of World War II, through the eyes of the same Amish we have all learned so much about in recent years.
This book was provided by Howard Books for free in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 11 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:October 8, 2013
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lcjohnson1988
Location:Indiana
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Lately one of my least favorite genres has been Amish books because they seem so prevalent or marketed as something other worldly like. What do I mean? For instance, one novel I was to review lacked depth, authenticity, and most of all a plot. Sometimes too the Amish and their lifestyle are highlighted as better than what others live or more along the fantasy type genre.
However, I am so glad to have read Promise to Return for here is an author who was raised and lived the Amish lifestyle. Through the novel her aim to enlighten readers as to what possibly may have been experienced by some Amish communities during World War II. Elizabeth Byler Younts writes with more than her knowledge or experience; her heart is clearly present on every page throughout the book.
Here is a story with characters that have depth of heart, emotions and life happenings that grip the heart of the reader; drawing them into the perspective of the main female character named Miriam and the male lead Henry. As I read the story, I became aware of how lifelike Amish communities can be, which is not as they are sometimes presented. They are people who experience joy, pain, sorrow, laugh, cry and make choices as to Who is leading their life just as those who aren’t Amish do.
I was reminded of the price servicemen and women pay, and perhaps more so the families during WW II. We are used to instant everything today and waiting seems like a major inconvenience and frustration. Back in the 1940’s, the time between seeing a soldier off to war and hearing anything from them varied and when no word was received, that had to be one of the most heart wrenching experiences our past generation suffered! So, perhaps as you read this fictional story you might be reminded as I was that the cost of the freedoms we enjoy or abuse today came at costs we may never really understand.
I cannot wait for the sequel to Promise to Return, which focuses on a different character from this first novel. Just know that this is one author to read, follow and know that she is open to engaging with anyone who desires to know more about the Amish or her own life by contacting her at
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Review 12 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Enjoyed!!

Date:October 7, 2013
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Cindy Loven
Location:Conway, AR
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This is my first book to read from this author and I enjoyed it very much. I did enjoy the book, at first I kept thinking this is like another author's story that I recently read, but as I read on, I saw that Elizabeth had a totally different story. I loved Henry, and wanted to smack Eli. He was not a good friend to Henry, nor Miriam. I enjoyed the realistic view we had of an Amish family, with Elizabeth's family being Amish, she was able to give us a great view of that. My favorite side story in this book, was Kathryn. It really spoke to me that while she was banned, her mother still kept in touch with her. Overall I loved the book, and enjoyed it very much. Most definitely worthy of a five star review!
This book was provided by Howard Books for my honest review. No payment was received for this review.
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Review 13 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Promise to Return

Date:October 3, 2013
Customer Avatar
Laura Hilton
Location:Horseshoe Bend, AR
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Title: PROMISE TO RETURN
Author: Elizabeth Byler Younts
Publisher: Howard Books
October 2013
ISBN: 978-1476735016
Genre: Amish/historical/WWII
When World War II breaks out, Miriam Coblentz’s peaceful Amish world is turned upside down...
It’s 1943, and Miriam Coblentz and Henry Mast are nearing their wed¬ding day when the unthinkable happens—Henry is drafted. However, since he is a part of the pacifist Amish tradition, Henry is sent to a conscientious objector Civilian Public Service camp. When he leaves for the work camp, his gaping absence turns Miriam’s life upside down. Little does she know it’s only the beginning...
When Henry returns home, he brings news that shakes Miriam and their Amish community to the core. Henry believes God has called him to enlist in the army and fight for his country, leaving her to make an impor¬tant decision: whether to choose loyalty to the peaceful life she’s always known or her love for Henry.
Two worlds collide in this unforgettable debut novel, providing a fasci¬nating and rare look into Amish culture during World War II. While Henry is battling enemies across the ocean, Miriam struggles between her devotion to Henry and her love of the Amish way of life. One question is at the bottom of it all: will she follow the rules of her religion or the leading of her heart?
PROMISE TO RETURN is Ms. Younts debut fiction novel—and the first book in her The Promise of Sunrise series. I fell in love with Henry – such a wonderful young man who was willing to be led by God despite the rules of the church – and Miriam who is afraid to do anything but toe-the-line. I wanted her to break free a few times and do what Henry wished for her to do. And I got upset at her and Henry’s best friend several times.
Fans of Amish fiction will devour Ms. Younts’ PROMISE TO RETURN. Having Amish family, Ms. Younts writes things that the average Amish writer wouldn’t think to include. And the threat of WWII and the quiet lives of the Amish—it is fascinating to read how they might interact. I knew Amish served as conscientious objectors or were drafted, but it is totally believable that one might’ve enlisted on his own. Discussion questions and an interview with Ms. Younts are included at the end of the book.
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Review 14 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great insight into how the Amish dealt with WWII!

Date:September 30, 2013
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Heart2Heart
Location:Victorville, CA
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
On the day that Miriam Coblentz and Henry Matz are meeting with the bishops to discuss their upcoming wedding plans, Henry receives his draft notice. They had almost made it, but now the war will be what keeps them apart for now. Since Henry is Amish and killing others goes against his religious beliefs in the Ten Commandments, he is assigned tasks as a conscientious objector in the Civillian Public Service camp, digging trenches and other tasks. However it isn't without risks.
Will Miriam be able to find the same man after Henry serves his time during World War II, or will the horrors he witnesses take a toll on the man he used to be? How will the men that Henry deals with, the English, see him as one who refuses to fight? Will they have any respect for a man who refuses to defend his own country?
In the novel, Promise to Return by author Elizabeth Byler Younts, this novel picks at a subject most don't come to think about, how the Amish dealt with World War II. I think Elizabeth utilizes all her knowledge and experience both being raised Amish and having a husband who serves in the armed service to blend together a wonderful and compelling story of how much we are willing to risk to serve not only others but our country as well.
Miriam is feeling overwhelmed because of what she has been brought up to believe as well as what the Amish community has been saying not only about Henry but about what will come of their wedding when Henry returns. She takes to heart what people are saying not only to her but about Henry and at times is at odds trying to defend their beliefs. She worries that she might not ever see her dreams about being married and raising a family come to pass especially when Henry returns on a short leave at Christmas and tells her about the discrimination facing the Amish men by the English and their beliefs in not wanting to fight when they are so desperately needed. Henry surprises Miriam when he tells her that he has decided to enlist because it is something he believes God is calling him to do. But is it really?
Now Henry will face shunning by the Amish community when he returns because he has taken it upon himself to enter the war efforts and it is simply more than Miriam can take. Meanwhile there is a man who has an interest in her, Eli and now with Henry out of the picture, will he be able to persuade Miriam that her best interests lie in marrying him instead? You'll have to pick up this novel and find out.
I received Promise to Return by Elizabeth Byler Younts compliments of Howard Books, a division of Simon and Schuster Publishers for my honest review and received no monetary compensation for a favorable review. Being a huge fan of World War II fiction as well as Amish Romance, I was thrilled to be able to read this one. I never really considered how the Amish had to deal with the war effort until picking this one up and really loved the conflict for Henry. Trying to decide what is the right thing to do without all the added peer pressure not only from the American soldiers but also from his Amish community. Definitely a hard place to be and trying to convince Miriam that he still plans on marrying her when he returns if she will wait for him. Definitely a task worthy of faith in God and one that takes the reader on an unforgettable journey! I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars! There is a great reading guide that is perfect for book clubs as well as a letter to readers from the author explaining her idea in writing this book being a former Amish member and what people had to deal with regarding entering the war as Amish residents.
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Review 15 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A love story, a war story.

Date:September 25, 2013
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Sufficient in Jesus
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Calling all readers: You want to read this book.
I just finished it ten minutes ago and I have been telling everyone in earshot for the last hours: This is an out-of-the-ballpark Amish novel.
In fact, for those of us who are wary of Amish "bonnet" novels, let me put it this way:
Promise to Return is a grand story.
Promise to Return is a complex love story. I found it extremely believable in its hopes and confusions. It was agonizing at times, as Miriam tried to find a steady guide in this crazy world to navigate the paths laid out before her. More than once, I feared that the craziness would cause a heart to break beyond repair. This is one of the few books I have read where the relationship triangle was spot-on and added depth instead of taking it away. There were times when I was unsure, like Miriam herself, of who I wanted her to love... although not *too* unsure, because Henry is a fine character and a very good man.
May I repeat: This romance was well done.
Promise to Return is a war story. That is why I really wanted this book, because it's about World War Two soldiers. The author, Elizabeth Byler Younts, was raised Amish as a child and is now a home-schooling Mom and the wife of an Air Force Officer. The authenticity of this book that I could feel bone-deep as I read, that comes from her life experience. This is why her story shines when she writes about soldiers and the people who love them, and why she was able to bring Miriam's inner world to life. No matter how the times and places changes from then to know, the heart of the matter doesn't.
There are some books that are okay to stay in for a vacation, other that I've wanted to live in them. Seeds of Evidence, The Ollie Chandler Series, Burning Sky, Small Town Girl...I can think of a few books I would live inside. Right now, this is one of them.
Promise to Return is a book full of characters I would love to meet. Miriam herself, who's power to make decisions seems frail at times, and I'd cheer for her and then say "I'd have been torn the same way she was." Henry, who is a giver. He gives grace and forgiveness and care. And then Eli who seems to be a taker, used to taking whatever he wants. And Mrs. Poole, a non-Amish woman whose Christianity is a beautiful thing. And a whole bunch of other folks I can't name by name because they're part of the plot.
I'm afraid of saying too much more. Just go read the book.
Thank you Howard Books for sending me my copy to review!!!
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Review 16 for Promise to Return, Promise of Sunrise Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

One of the best books I have read this year!

Date:September 8, 2013
Customer Avatar
Marbie
Location:The Netherlands
Age:35-44
Gender:female
1943
Miriam Coblentz is a young Amish woman who wants nothing more than to be obedient to her church, get married to the love of her life, Henry Mast, and to become a mother. However, shortly before their marriage, Henry is drafted and everything becomes complicated.
At first Henry is serving as a conscientious objector at a Civilian Public Service camp, but during this time there he learns how bad the war in Europe really is and he feels God’s call to enlist. Before his training starts, he comes home on leave and tells his family and Miriam that he’s going to fight in the war. His family is hurt and doesn’t want him to stay under their roof anymore. Miriam doesn’t understand why Henry made this decision. His attitude towards God seems to be changing as well—he so easily talks about praying to God and hearing His voice.
Miriam is so confused—is she going to wait for Henry’s return? And when he comes back, will he confess to the church he was wrong? He seems to be so sure he was right to enlist and go to war.
Her childhood friend, Eli, is trying to win her hand while Henry is away. Although Miriam likes him, she doesn’t love him, but he can offer her the life she has always wanted. Is she going to wait for Henry, or does she give in to her longing to get married in the church; to become a wife and mother, like she has always dreamed?
Against her parents’ wishes, Miriam frequently writes to Henry and she anticipates his return letters, but then months go by without a word from him… Is he still alive? Then one day Henry’s mother and sister visit with news from Europe…
One of the best books I have read this year! This author knows how to keep the suspense high and keep the reader guessing. Miriam’s struggle was well done and I really felt for her. I have shed several tears while reading this fantastic book, so I advise keeping the tissues handy. I’m going to keep my eye on this author and I’m surely going to read the next book in this series.
*Thanks to the publisher for providing a review copy through NetGalley.*
+3points
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