My take: About five pages into this book, I got mad—mad because I knew Marianna would not make the choices I wanted her to make. And I was right. Along Wooded Paths does not end where I wanted it to end, but that’s okay—because that means Goyer has another book to write in the series! In all my Amish fiction reading (and it’s been a lot recently), I’ve never encountered a series I enjoyed so much. I loved Beside Still Waters (see my review here), and Along Wooded Paths is equally compelling. Marianna’s journey of faith—as she realizes she can have a personal relationship with God, learns to care for others (even the Englischers who live in her town), and begins to understand that you don’t have to be Amish to be saved—is one not often represented in Amish fiction. While I didn’t always agree with Marianna’s decisions, I understood why she made them; at the same time, I hope things come to a satisfying resolution in the third book—not only for Marianna and Ben, but also for Marianna’s parents (her father seems to be inching away from the Amish way of life while her mother believes it is the only “true” way) and her Uncle Ike, who clearly is in love with Englischer Annie.
I can’t recommend this book highly enough (just keep in mind, you really do need to read Beside Still Waters first), and I await the next book’s release with baited breath! Along Wooded Paths is definitely a 5-star read! Even if you’re skeptical of Amish fiction, you should give Goyer’s series a chance!
You can read an excerpt here, buy the book here, and see what other bloggers are saying here.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."