SUSANNA'S  DREAM Marta Perry
The Lost Sisters of Pleasant Valley Book 2
Berkley Books
ISBN-13: 978-0-425-25375-5
February 2014
Amish Fiction

Oyersburg and Pleasant Valley, Pennsylvania Present Day

Over fifteen years ago, three sisters, Lydia Beachy, Chloe Wentworth, and Susanna Bitler were born to Eli Weaver and his wife, Diane Wentworth Weaver.  Following a traffic accident that killed Eli and Diane, the girls were adopted by three different families:  Lydia and Susanna grew up in separate Amish homes, and Chloe was raised by her Englisch grandmother, Margaret Wentworth.  (LYDIA'S HOPE, June 2013).

Susanna Bitler's grown sisters, Lydia Beachy and Chloe Wentworth, have connected and bonded in unexpected ways as they learn more about each other and become solid friends.  Chloe has moved from Philadelphia to Oyersburg, rented a cottage on the river, and spends her days writing a research paper about Amish history and crafts.  Chloe has been working in Dora and Susanna's shop, Plain Gifts, hoping to get to know Susanna while she does her research.  In a rash moment of emotion, Chloe blurts out to Susanna that she and Lydia are her sisters, shocking Susanna beyond words.  Now, Susanna refuses to discuss the matter; she can't believe the woman she knew as her mother lied to her.

Not long after she learns about her forgotten childhood, Susanna's partner and friend, Dora Gaus falls ill and is forced to work part-time in the shop, so she sends her son, Nate, to help Susanna.  In a haze of confusion, Susanna turns to Nate with her concerns about the origin of her birth.  All too suddenly, there's a lot going on in the quiet life Susanna leads.  She feels as if she doesn't exist anymore.  Now, she has two sisters, Dora is gravely ill, and Susanna might have to give up her half of the business now that Nate is determined to force Dora to retire.

While Susanna is dealing with recent developments, Chloe's friendship with Seth Miller, Lydia's next door neighbor, is developing into something more. Seth was the person who first told her about her sisters, and like Susanna, Chloe had a hard time accepting the news.  But now, after all they've been through, she and Seth are much more than just friends.  Seth left the Amish life years ago.  He walked away from his upbringing and embraced the Englisch life by becoming a computer technician.  Now, he's telecommuting from his mother's house and helping keep an eye on his sister, Jessie, who was recently diagnosed as bipolar.  Seth is wrestling with his own problems; he's not sure where he belongs in the world, Amish or Englisch?  And, while Chloe is beginning to care deeply for him, she knows she can never become Amish.  Do they have a future?

SUSANNA'S DREAM is an emotional and exciting novel about these three sisters who were lost, but are now together.  Mostly, this is a story of love and trust as Susanna and Nate begin to fall in love, while Chloe and Seth also discover romance.  There is suspense and emotional drama when a devastating flood nearly wipes out the town of Oyersburg and its surrounding territory.

SUSANNA'S DREAM is the second and final book in The Lost Sisters of Pleasant Valley series, following LYDIA'S HOPE.  Many characters return from LYDIA'S HOPE, and it is truly a wonderful experience to visit Pleasant Valley once again.  Both books stand alone, and both novels are truly heartwarming stories of romance and devotion.  SUSANNA'S DREAM is a very special spring read!

Diana Risso