A question for readers: Isn’t it fun when you adore the first book in a new series, then you anticipate the next installment for months (hoping you won’t be disappointed) only to discover that book number two is even better than the first?! For me, Jody Hedlund’s “Orphan Train” series from Bethany House is the perfect example. “With You Always” was an excellent Christian Historical Novel, but “Together Forever” resonated with me even more… Perhaps because I could relate to the characters in big ways, and I loved the inclusion of the young orphans – in search of new families – who really added to the story with color, vivacity, and depth of emotion.
“Together Forever” not only brings to life a fascinating piece of history in the “placing out” process of the Children’s Aid Society of 1850s New York, it is also filled with emotional dilemmas and characters who walk straight off the pages and into your heart. Few authors can make you laugh and cry within the span of a couple pages, but Jody manages this with ease. As a side note, a few scenes were, I felt, very slightly overdone for a Christian novel, and felt mildly inappropriate, but these were few in number and fairly mild in content.
Overall, if you enjoy Christian fiction at it’s best but haven’t yet discovered the heartfelt, inspiring, and compelling stories of the three Neumann sisters (each book is about one sister) I highly encourage you to give the “Orphan Train” novels a try! Although they could easily be standalone stories, it is best to read them in order beginning with “With You Always”, followed by the new release of “Together Forever”, and concluding this coming December with “Searching for You”!
“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.”