Tag Archives: Dale Cramer

Book Review: The Captive Heart


The Captive Heart – By: Dale Cramer

Bestselling author of Paradise Valley, Dale Cramer, has done it again!  I have had the privilege of reading and reviewing another one of his enjoyable works!  If you haven’t read Paradise Valley, I encourage you to do so before reading Cramer’s The Captive Heart, because this 2nd book picks up right where Book 1 leaves off.

Book Description:

Ravaged by disease, preyed upon by ruthless bandits, the Bender family’s second year in Mexico has taken a grievous turn.  Faced with impossible choices, the expatriate Amish discover, more than ever before, what it means to live by faith and not by sight.

But it’s Miriam who must make the hardest choice as her heart takes her on a new and dangerous course.  Domingo.  “He is gentle,” his sister said, “until someone he loves is threatened.”  Is Miriam that someone?

“Cualnezqui,” he often calls her – The Nahuatl word for Beautiful one.  The chiseled native has proven himself a man of principle, grace, and power.  Yet is he the pearl of great price for whom Miriam would sacrifice everything, or is he merely a friend?  Tormented by conflicting emotions, she’s haunted by vivid dreams: Dressed in the coarse cotton pants and shirt of a peasant, she stands on the precipice of a sun-washed ridge searching desperately for Domingo.  Domingo the fierce.  Domingo the protector.

Domingo the forbidden.

This book definitely kept me reading, even more so than Book 1 in the Daughters of Caleb Bender series.  Many suspenseful events occur that keep the story moving and the reader intrigued – illness, a kidnapping, and a rescue in the shadow of a loss of loved ones.  Even though the main story line focuses on the events that involve Miriam and Domingo, Cramer does not forget the perils also faced by Caleb and the rest of the growing Amish community.  His characters are  just as captivating as they were in the first book – each one with their own personality, strength and struggles depicted in ways that forces the reader to want to learn more about them.  Caleb’s faith is pushed harder,  Domingo learns more of the ways of the Amish, and Ada becomes a hero in her own right. This book is another good example of how Faith, Love and Forgiveness can change the lives of others.  There is also the question of whether or not it would be wise to give up the Amish way to follow another way.

If you read this book, let me know how you like it.  I know I am now anxiously waiting to read Book 3!!

Thank you to Bethany House for providing this book for review. 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 2551


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Posted by on August 15, 2012 in Uncategorized


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Book Review: Paradise Valley

Here is another book I recommend to all of my fellow readers out there, especially those of you who (like myself) are fans of Amish fiction.  If I were you, I would definitely add Dale Cramer’s Paradise Valley to your summer reading list!! I couldn’t agree more with New York Times bestselling author Beverly Lewis when she says, “If you like Amish fiction, you’ll love this book!”

Paradise Valley - by: Dale Cramer


Set in the 1920’s, Paradise Valley is a great example of historical fiction, having been inspired by actual events with the historical context of the novel being fairly accurate.   The story begins with the arrest of 5 Amish fathers for violating the Bing Act of 1921.  From this point forward Cramer’s characters — the Bender family — come to life through the eyes of 15-year-old Rachel, one of Caleb Bender’s daughters.  I encourage you to follow the journey of Rachel and her family as they move to Mexico to start a new life in a place where the American government cannot interfere with their Amish way of life.  They are faced with many trials and tribulations throughout their journey and their attempts to begin life in their new home, Paradise Valley.  See how they draw upon their faith and keep to “their ways” as temptation, hard times, and risky encounters with bandits threaten their new start. 


I hope you take the time to look this book up at your local library or book store!! I thoroughly enjoyed it, and if you enjoy Amish fiction as much as I do, then I know you will too!!  Happy reading!!


Thank you to Bethany House for providing this book for review. 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


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Posted by on June 3, 2011 in Blogging, Book Nook, WAHM


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