Hannah has a good life. A beautiful home, a loving husband, and a wonderful Amish community are only a few of her daily blessings. But she has carried a heavy burden for years: a secret that no one must know.
When tragedy strikes, her secret threatens to be revealed, jeopardizing everything she’s ever loved. Will Hannah be able to face her greatest fear and find God’s purpose for her life?
Targeted Age Group:: 16+
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
The subject of this book has always been near and dear to my heart. Since I'd never seen it tackled in an Amish book before, I knew it had to be done. Through many tears and God's amazing grace, this book came into existence.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
Good question. I don't write from an outline, no do I typically pattern characters after people I know. I pray and begin writing. The characters reveal themselves as I write.
It is a secret I intend to keep buried forever. But like all secrets, it begs to be told. Nobody knows. Only me. And if I had my way, not even I would know. The secret is powerful. It has the potential to destroy my life. On the other hand, if revealed, could it possibly bring a sense of peace to my soul?
But I will never tell a soul.
Exhausted, Hannah Stolzfus clambered down from the buggy.
Dat met her at the barn and led Winnie to the water trough. “Another busy day at the candle shop?” Dat’s bushy eyebrows rose.
“Jah, Dat. Lots of Englischers today. I guess the kinner are out of school now that it’s summertime and it seems lots of folks are visiting Lancaster on their vacations this year,” Hannah said.
“It wonders me why the Englisch find our ways so interesting.” Silas Stolzfus stroked his beard with his thumb and forefinger.
“I think maybe they want to be like us. I saw another new book at Yoder’s Market yesterday. It had a woman on the cover with a kapp, but the hair was all wrong. Looked pretty funny to me. Ach, I can’t imagine what Mamm would say if I cut my hair short across the front like the Englisch.”
“If they want to be like us, why don’t they give up their fancy cars and their electric?” Dat added, “Nee, I’m afraid it would be difficult giving up something you’ve known your whole life. I, for one, would not want to give up my farm.”
“That’s because you are a gut farmer and a gut steward of the land Gott has given you.”
“Demut, Hannah. It is only by the strength Der Herr gives me that I can work this land.” Dat leaned over and placed a hand on Hannah’s forearm. “You are a gut daughter, and wise to think such things.”
“If I am wise it is only because of what you and Mamm have taught me,” Hannah deflected with a smile before making her way toward the back door of the house.
Silas released a contented sigh and grinned as he watched Hannah enter the house. Out of all four of his daughters, she was certainly the most well-grounded and levelheaded. His youngest daughter, on the other hand, was quite a different story. He knew how often Deborah sneaked out of the house at night but was glad that she often roped Hannah into going with her. He got the feeling Hannah only went to keep her sister from dabbling in too much mischief.
“Hannah,” Deborah whispered, shaking her sister’s shoulder. “Hannah, wake up.”
Groggily, Hannah turned over on her side. “What is it, Deborah?” Hannah groaned.
“Leah can’t go with me tonight. You have to come. I told Peter I would meet him at the movie theater. Leah’s beau canceled and now she doesn’t want to go,” Deborah said pouting.
“I’m tired, Deb. We had customers non-stop today and I barely had enough time to complete my chores before bed,” Hannah reasoned.
Deborah rolled her eyes. “Hannah, you’re eighteen years old and you’re acting like Mammi.”
“I am not,” Hannah snapped back. “And if you had a mind to get yourself a job, you might find yourself a little tired, too. Instead you do everything you can to get out of work.”
“I do not. I’m in my rumspringa. I’ve got a right to have a little fun,” Deborah said, pulling up a pair of jeans under her dress. “Fine. If you won’t go with me I’ll just go by myself.”
Hannah sighed and rolled out of bed. “Okay, I’ll come with you but I’m not wearing Englisch clothes.”
“If you want to be the only one in an Englisch movie theater dressed Plain, fine. But I aim to fit in. Besides, Peter likes it when I wear these jeans.” Deb gave Hannah a sly look.
“Ach, did he tell ya that?” Hannah donned her kapp and pinned it into place.
“Nee, but I can tell by the way he looks at me. I'm sure Christian would look at you that way, too, if you dressed in Englisch clothes like this,” Deborah said unabashedly, showing off her snug jeans and fitted shirt.
Incredulous, Hannah gasped. “I certainly don't want to attract that kind of attention from Christian. It's…it's sinful.”
Deborah rolled her eyes. “Ach, Hannah. Have you no sense of fun?”
“It's that sense of fun that lands girls in trouble,” Hannah insisted.
“Come on Plain Jane, let's go now.”
Hannah shook her head in disbelief and reluctantly followed her obstinate sister out the door.
Hannah stood at the back of the movie theater’s auditorium waiting for her eyes to adjust. Deborah and Peter had already found their seats, but Hannah had no clue where they were. She had decided using the bathroom before the movie started would be good idea, but had to wait in a long line. By the time she entered the theater, the previews had already begun. It’s nearly impossible to see anything in here. Hannah squinted. After giving up locating her sister, she sat down in the back row alone.
Samuel Beachy entered the movie theater a little late. After his friend Christian ditched him for supper with an Englisch girl, he figured he didn’t want to spend the evening bored to death. The movie theater was the only other thing open on this side of town at this late hour. Fortunately, the movie that looked most interesting had just begun and he could slip in before the previews were over. He normally didn’t care to watch Englisch movies, but figured it was better than the alternative.
As he looked around for a good seat, he noticed an Amish girl in the back row. Due to the darkness, he couldn’t tell if it was someone from his district or not. He approached the row and walked near to where the young woman sat. A bright flash from the movie screen illuminated her face and he realized it was Hannah Stolzfus, Christian’s aldi.
What is she doing here alone? He wondered. He was glad Christian and the Englisch girl hadn’t come here. If so, Hannah was sure to be disheartened seeing her beau with another girl. Samuel determined he would keep her company.
“Hiya,” he whispered.
“Ach, hullo, Samuel.” Hannah’s face brightened as she looked past him. “Is Christian with you?”
Samuel grimaced inwardly. “Nee. I’m here alone. Do you mind if I join ya?”
“I guess that would be all right.” She shrugged. “I’m here with my schweschder and her beau—your bruder.”
Samuel looked around the large darkened auditorium, but the young couple was nowhere in sight. He leaned over and whispered, “Hey, want some popcorn?”
Hannah seemed to hesitate. “But it’s so expensive.”
“My treat. It won’t break me, I promise.” He winked.
“Sure.” She smiled.
She probably thought the popcorn smelled good. He knew it was difficult to resist. She most likely wouldn’t have wasted money buying her own at the exorbitant amount the theaters charged when she could make it at home for just pennies, but Samuel was eager to purchase some.
“I’ll be right back.” He disappeared for a few minutes, and then promptly returned with a large tub of popcorn. He offered her some and she happily took a large handful of the buttery goodness and popped some into her mouth.
“Ach, it’s a gut thing I got the big one,” he teased.
“You mean I gotta share it with you?” She grinned.
“Yes, but these are all yours,” he said, handing her a box of chocolate malt balls and a bottle of water.
“Ach, Samuel. Denki.”
Samuel didn’t begrudge being generous—especially when it evoked a smile from a beautiful girl. Christian’s girl, he reminded himself. He’d need to tread lightly. Christian may be a two-timing cheat, but Samuel had no intentions of tempting Hannah into being one too. He, in good conscience, would never be able to call himself Christian’s best friend if he did.
However, he couldn’t deny that he delighted in seeing Hannah’s face light up. Christian had found a good woman. It was a shame he wasn’t treating her the way she deserved.
The three of them had grown up together and had always been gut friends. It seemed that Hannah had blossomed from an awkward tomboy into a beautiful young lady overnight. Unfortunately, both Samuel and Christian had noticed at the same time. The very night Samuel had in mind to ask Hannah if he could take her home from a singing was the night she rode in Christian’s buggy for the first time. That was over a year ago.
Since then, Samuel had respected them as a couple and kept his distance from Hannah. But still, he couldn’t help but think what would have happened if he’d asked and she’d gone out with him instead.
Links to Purchase Print Books
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) Print Edition at Amazon
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) Print Edition at Barnes and Noble
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) Print book for sale at Christian Book
Links to Purchase eBooks – Click links for book samples and reviews
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) On Amazon
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) on Barnes and Noble/Nook
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) on Smashwords
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) on iBooks
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) on Google Play
Buy An Unforgivable Secret (Amish Secrets – Book 1) on Kobo
Have you read this book? Tell us what you thought! All information was provided by the author and not edited by us. This is so you get to know the author better.