A Path Made Plain

If you remember Betsy from A Season of Change, you'll know things didn't quite turn out for her like she'd thought they would. But she's firm in her resolve to build a life for herself in Sarasota, away from the bulk of her Amish family in Ohio, yet still under the watchful eye of her Great-Aenti Sarah and her Mennonite Aenti Chelle.

And then, when formerly Amish Thaddeus Zook shows up in Pinecraft, things get pretty interesting for both of them. After culinary school, he became a pastry chef and has worked most of his adult life in restaurants among the Englisch. 

While Betsy nurses a hesitant heart, Thaddeus shows a similar hesitancy about rejoining an Amish community. Though neither can deny the attraction between them, Thaddeus is hiding a past that could threaten their future together. 

Where to order:

"This is Elizabeth [Betsy] Yoder’s story, and I now have a much better feeling about her, and learned to love her! It is also about Thaddeus Zook and his foot in both cultures, and not feeling he belongs in either." Maureen, via Goodreads 

Lynette Sowell does a very good job of continuing the story of those in Pinecraft. Henry is still doing his construction while Imogene is still taking her pictures. I cannot wait for book 3 to continue and return to their lives. Will Rochelle find love? Why is Emma staying in Pinecraft? Melissa, via Goodreads

“A wonderfully vivid picture of the Amish community in Florida that keeps you on your toes with suspense. Absolutely captivating!”Serena B Miller, RITA and CAROL award-winning author
“Lynette Sowell uses vivid imagery and well-rounded, warm and friendly characters to bring home the Amish community in Pinecraft.”Elizabeth Goddard, award-winning author of Love in the Air, Love on the Slopes and Love in the Wind

Seasons in Pinecraft


An Amish widower finds love in unexpected places

Amish widower Jacob Miller believes it was a mistake to visit the Amish village of Pinecraft for winter vacation, especially after his daughter is struck by a car. Stranded in Sarasota until his daughter recovers, Jacob grows increasingly wary of events that unfold in his unfamiliar surroundings—including the strange curiosity of Englischer Natalie Bennett.

Natalie never thought her circus career as an aerial silks artist would end with a blown-out knee at the age of 25. She also never knew her late mother had a secret—that she was once Amish.

When Natalie meets the Millers at the Sarasota hospital, she is attracted to their warm hospitality and simple ways—and soon wonders if they can help her find her mother’s family. As Jacob and Natalie fall in love, their worlds collide. Will their differences tear them apart? Or will their love be strong enough to blend their clashing cultures?

Order A Season of Change here:
What readers and reviewers are saying:

"I grew up in a Plain community (not Amish) and once people find out, they are always trying to get me to read 'Amish romances.' I find most of them simplistic and overly sentimental as well as syrupy. I chose this one because the description seemed unique. This book is in many ways a fairly standard Amish type romance; simple, clean and straightforward. What Sowell has done is injected some complexity and shading to the Plain experience I don't often see. I found her research far better than most and the fact that she used a real life town was refreshing. She did a very nice job pointing out how there are differences in belief and custom amongst Plain communities. So many of this genre just seem to be aiming for patronizing escapism; I don't see that here. This book feels genuine and the characters three dimensional."

~An Amazon reviewer

“Lynette Sowell’s new twist on the genre will capture fans of Amish fiction as well as lovers of unlikely romance. Readers will pull for Natalie and Jacob to stitch their two very different worlds together into a comfortable quilt of family, faith, and future plans.”

~ Lisa Wingate, best-selling author of The Prayer Box and Wildwood Creek

Authenticity and heart are guaranteed between the pages of a Lynette Sowell novel. She never disappoints, and I eagerly anticipate escaping into her next engaging tale.
– Kim Vogel Sawyer, award-winning author of My Heart Remembers

"While this is the first book in the Seasons in Pinecraft series and the first book I’ve read from Sowell, with the well-crafted, emotion filled story, this will certainly not be the last. With Amish and Mennonite fiction being more popular than ever, I would add this new series to my shelf today. Amish fiction fans will love this new story as much as I do."
-- Becky at BrodartVibe

This is a book to be read in one sitting, if your family will leave you alone, and not demand that you return to the realities of life- to cook meals, clean, etc.!! I could not put this book down!! I kept saying "Just one more page!" – 
The Quiet Quilter's Blog

Watch for book two in November 2014:
A Path Made Plain

Come visit Starlight, Texas!

Do you like cowboys and ranchers, and do you have a soft spot for wounded heroes? Do you like all things Texas, like high school football and barbecue? If you do, I hope you'll come with me on a journey to the town of Starlight, Texas--close to Fort Hood. You'll find a kaleidoscope of characters, grizzled veterans, expats from Germany and Korea, strong men and women from all walks of life, who make up a community that sticks together when the going gets tough.

For a limited time, I'm running a mail-order special on my three titles in the Starlight, Texas series. I'll personalize and autograph all three titles and have them mailed to you, or a friend if it's a gift, all for a total of $12, postage paid! (U.S. Only, first class mail)

Here's more about the series and a link to order at the bottom:

Catch A Falling Star
Justine Campbell would gladly rewind her life a few months…back before it crumbled around her like so much gilded plaster. Yet she finds herself back in her hometown, away from the Hollywood spotlight.

Billy Tucker could use a rewind button, too. He’d go back to the day before his humvee hit a landmine in Iraq, injuring himself and killing two of his buddies. It's been a long road back, healing inside and out, and Billy now excels at handcrafting custom made cowboy boots. He has a vision to help veterans like himself, yet struggles with the past.

Billy’s bitterness and Justine’s humiliation make for a prickly pair when they first meet, but can either of them let go of the past long enough to let God make their paths straight again?

Counting on Starlight 
A canceled wedding, an insistent ex-fiancĂ©, a tempting job offer, and California girl Liann Rivers unexpectedly finds her dreams tied up in tiny Starlight, Texas. Except when she arrives, the job isn’t what was promised, the move doesn’t get rid of the pesky ex-fiancĂ©, and her car won’t even run. What’s a girl to do? 

Jake Tucker is tired of being responsible, tired of being the strong tower for his family, and ready to escape Starlight, once and for all. The chance of a lifetime—coaching football at the college level—is finally within reach. Except there’s this new girl in town, and somehow he can’t see himself anywhere without her.

The Sweetheart of Starlight
Tamarind Brown knows Texas barbecue. . .
She also knows how to run a restaurant, even if The Pit is a bit shabby around the edges and needs renovation. Her place is a local favorite in Starlight, Texas. So why is she losing money? 

Rick Mantovani knows pasta. He has a string of successful Italian restaurants on the East Coast, but he wants to conquer barbecue. And the place to prove himself is the heart of Texas. The fact that Starlight is also the home of a beautiful, green-eyed barbecue champion doesn’t hurt.

As their friendship grows, Rick visits Tamarind’s church to do a little business networking. He’s never had time for God or religion, and when tragedy strikes Starlight, Rick finds himself at a crossroads of faith. Why believe in a God who has the power to take away everything?

Christmas in July!

Where did the first half of 2014 disappear to? I'm sure some of you must be wondering the same.

I'd like to kick off July by having a giveaway this month, my version of Christmas in July. I'm going to have Rafflecopter choose two names and give away two copies of The New England Romance Collection, which includes five standalone novels authored by Susan Page Davis, Lisa Harris, Pamela Griffin, Darlene Franklin, and me. Five historical novels, set in five different New England States.

Here's more about the collection:

New England is not just colorful in autumn but throughout the history of its states—including Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Through the trials and triumphs of the early years of American history, to the turbulent 1930s, enjoy five stories laced with history, faith, and romance. Will these couples find a place to call home among the northeastern states?

I think Barbour outdid themselves on packaging this set together -- the cover has a front flap and is embossed, the page edges are deckled.

This book was on the ECPA best seller list for February and March 2014.

So, how do you enter?

Leave a comment below. Also, Tweet about it via Rafflecopter and check out my Facebook page as well. You can enter via the box below.

Thanks, and happy July!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

So what are you doing this summer?

Texas backroads farm stand
I'm blogging over at Not Quite Amish Living today, Five Things To Remember for Simple Summer Getaways

Hooray for summertime! Who’s with me? Time for a little unwinding, relaxation, time for “getting away” as a family.
We tend to sometimes try to do the biggest, best-est, most jam-packed activities during the summer because, well, we know—it doesn’t last forever, and “before you know it,” school days and regimented schedules are upon us once again.
Gone are the late nights, the adventures, and we don’t want to waste a single minute of those long hours of daylight.
Then it happens. You’ve heard it’s been said, “I need a vacation after my vacation.”
My sisters (and brethren), this simply need not be.  Read more here.

Welcome to Pinecraft ~

Last time I posted at InspyRomance, I wrote about Jacob Miller, my hero in A Season of Change, and how I “met” him, along with the village of Pinecraft. The place wiggled its way into my heart and hasn’t left. The village itself became a major character in A Season of Change.
So this time, I’d like to introduce you to Pinecraft. Pretend we’re flying into Tampa, Florida, and hopping into our rental car and heading an hour or so south, to Sarasota.
Pinecraft has the only Amish-run post office in the U.S. Here's the local message board (think Craigslist).
Pinecraft has the only Amish-run post office in the U.S. Here’s the local message board (think Craigslist).
Even before you turn onto bustling Bahia Vista Avenue, you’ll know you’re not in a place where you’d expect to find an Anabaptist settlement. You’re in Sarasota, Florida, a lively city of 52,000 on the Gulf Coast.
For the rest of the post, follow me over to the InspyRomance blog, where you can learn about the Amish/Mennonite village of Pinecraft, Florida.

Lookin' for love

For the last few weeks, any time I've gone to the store, I've had to negotiate carefully past displays that urge us to spend money to show our love. 

Chocolate dipped strawberries, cakes, cookies, flowers, champagne, wine, stuffed animals (destined for the thrift store donation pile someday).

It's a lot easier to play at romantic love than to nurture the real thing. “Falling in love” is probably one of the easiest things in the world to do.

First there's eye contact, then a smile, then that spark of attraction. Those endorphins in our brains send our hearts soaring when the interest is mutual—yes, that's the falling in love part. The feeling we get comes from a chemical in our bodies called oxytocin. 

Then people try to hold onto that feeling with flowers and chocolate.

Unfortunately, a selfless sacrificial love isn't shown by calories and flowers that will be dead in a week or so.

One of the most romantic movies (and the only one in which I can tolerate Kevin Costner, besides Field of Dreams) is Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. Toward the end of the movie, when Robin comes to rescue Marian, she tells him,“ You came for me...you're alive...”

He replies by saying, “I would die for you.” (Swoon!)

Now, that's worth a whole lot more than roses and chocolate. That's the stuff of real love. You can't buy that in a store at any price.

If you've found that type of love, you won't keep it with typical gifts, and if you're looking for that type of love, you won't earn it by those kinds of gifts either.

Although chocolate, chocolate, chocolate will win points any time.

So will genuine gestures of love instead of an over-the-top budget blowout once a year.