Note from Ruth: Before I jump into the interview with Laura, I’d like to say that I read Awakened Love and highly recommend it to readers who are interested in the Amish lifestyle. Laura has a unique way of weaving Amish and Englisch characters into her stories. Awakened Love is rich with details of the plain lifestyle. You’ll want to read how these characters struggle once they discover the truth.
Rating: 5 stars
Ruth: Laura, please tell us about Awakened Love
Laura: Katie Detweiler grew up Amish, never knowing she was adopted as an infant. Now an adult, her new job as cook at an Amish bed and breakfast doesn’t bring about the euphoria she hoped for. Just as she’s getting her menu perfected, the Englisch family and severely ill sister she never knew existed enter her life and strain her Amish relationships. Plus, Katie suddenly has two different men vying for her attention—one Amish, one Englisch—and she wonders if one of them could be the man of her dreams. But when her Englisch sister’s health worsens, Katie must find a way to balance her heart, her job, and her faith while risking her own life for the sister she never knew.
Ruth: I’m always fascinated to find out what inspired a story. Will you share how the idea of Awakened Love was conceived?
Laura: It was a story I had an idea for a long time ago, but it did change somewhat since the original idea. It was fun seeing where this story would go. I wondered how it would feel to discover as an adult you were adopted. My parents adopted a child (not me), but they were open about it from the beginning.
Ruth: What do you hope the readers will take away from this book?
Laura: I will leave that up to God and the reader.
Ruth: Do you see yourself in any of your characters? If so, which character and why?
Laura: No, I am not my characters. I am somewhat quiet and shy like Katie.
Ruth: Is there something about yourself that maybe your readers don’t know?
Laura: My favorite flowers are tulips and violets.
Ruth: What project are you currently working on?
Laura: I’m working on the first book in the Amish of Jameport series The Snow Globe releasing April 2014. The title might be changed.
Victor Petersheim has left the Amish and works on a river boat on the Mississippi River, spending a month on the river then having a month off. During his off-work months he returns home to his Amish community and helps out on his grandparents’ farm. When he returns home after his most recent absence, he discovers his grossmammi has developed health problems and they’ve hired Esther Beachy to be a “mother’s helper.” Victor is unsettled by this woman living in their home, but has to accept it. Esther loves listening to Victor’s grandmother’s stories and while puttering around in a store while the grossmammi’s in the hospital, she discovers a snow globe that depicts an area where the Petersheims used to live. She buys it as a gift for the grossmammi to cheer her up during her hospitalization. Victor is touched by Esther’s gift and her care for his grossmammi, and strives to be friendlier. Will Esther’s gentle heart draw him back to the community? Or will he return to the river once again?
Ruth: I’m sure your fans will love the Jameport series. Will you remind readers where they can reach you?
Laura Hilton bio: Award winning author, Laura Hilton, her husband, Steve, and their five children make their home in Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas. She is a pastor’s wife, a stay-at-home mom and home-schools three of her children. Her two oldest children are homeschool graduates and are in college. Laura is also a breast cancer survivor.
Her publishing credits include three books in the Amish of Seymour series from Whitaker House: Patchwork Dreams, A Harvest of Hearts, and Promised to Another. The Amish of Webster County series, Healing Love. Surrendered Love and Awakened Love, releasing September 2013. A nonAmish book The Appalachian Ballad Quilt will release November 2014 from Abingdon Press. She is contracted for another three book Amish series with Whitaker House, The Amish of Jamesport, releasing in April 2014, September 2014, and April 2015. Laura is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Laura is a professional book reviewer for the Christian market, with over a thousand book reviews published at various online review sites.