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The Scent of Cherry Blossoms: A Romance from the Heart of Amish Country

183 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • ISBN-10: 030772963X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307729637
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (183 customer reviews)

More About the Author

Cindy Woodsmall is a New York Times, CBA, ECPA, and USA Today best-selling author who has written a dozen (and counting!) works of fiction and one of nonfiction. She and her dearest Old Order Amish friend, Miriam Flaud, coauthored the nonfiction, Plain Wisdom: An Invitation into an Amish Home and the Hearts of Two Women. Cindy has been featured on ABC Nightline and on the front page of the Wall Street Journal,and has worked with National Geographic on a documentary concerning Amish life. In June of 2013, the Wall Street Journal listed Cindy as the one of the top three most popular authors of Amish fiction.

She's won Fiction Book of the Year, Reviewer's Choice Awards, Inspirational Reader's Choice Contest, as well as one of Crossings' Best Books of the Year. She's been a finalist for the prestigious Christy, Rita, and Carol Awards, Christian Book of the Year, and Christian Retailers Choice Awards.

Her real-life connections with Amish Mennonite and Old Order Amish families enrich her novels with authenticity. Though she didn't realize it at the time, seeds were sown years ago that began preparing Cindy to write these books. At the age of ten, while living in the dairy country of Maryland, she became best friends with Luann, a Plain Mennonite girl. Luann, like all the females in her family, wore the prayer Kapp and cape dresses. Her parents didn't allow television or radios, and many other modern conveniences were frowned upon. During the numerous times Luann came to Cindy's house to spend the night, her rules came with her and the two were careful to obey them--afraid that if they didn't, the adults would end their friendship. Although the rules were much easier to keep when they spent the night at Luann's because her family didn't own any of the forbidden items, both sets of parents were uncomfortable with the relationship and a small infraction of any kind would have been enough reason for the parents to end the relationship. While navigating around the adults' disapproval and the obstacles in each other's lifestyle, the two girls bonded in true friendship that lasted into their teen years, until Cindy's family moved to another region of the US.

As an adult, Cindy became friends with a wonderful Old Order Amish family who opened their home to her. Although the two women, Miriam and Cindy, live seven hundred miles apart geographically, and a century apart by customs, when they come together they never lack for commonality, laughter, and dreams of what only God can accomplish through His children. Over the years Cindy has continued to make wonderful friendships with those inside the Amish and Mennonite communities--from the most conservative ones to the most liberal.

Cindy and her husband reside near the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains in their now empty nest.

If you'd like more information or to contact her, you can go to her website: or Facebook

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Liz on February 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover
There was a period of time when I was enthralled with Amish fiction. I was very interested in reading stories and seeing the similarities and differences with my own life. I admit though there came a point where the stories all seemed the same; the plot didn't have much variety. I was pleasantly surprised when I read this book by Cindy Woodsmall. It made me remember what I had first loved when reading Amish literature.
This Romeo and Juliet story stars Aden and Annie, who can't be together because of their communities. Annie is an Old Order Mennonite, while Aden is Old Order Amish. This alone I thought was interesting because I never knew before reading this book that people from these different communities could not be in a relationship together.
At the same time there is another plot line. Roman, Aden's brother, was in an accident years ago and is now in a wheelchair. The book follows Aden and Roman's relationship, as well as Roman's romantic life and how he is dealing with not being able to walk.
Overall, I really enjoyed this quick read. I liked reading about Aden and Annie's relationship as well as learning about Roman. The only thing I disliked was that the ending seemed kind of abrupt. However, I would definitely recommend this better than average Amish read.
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By reviewsbyerin on February 21, 2012
Format: Hardcover
An Old Order Mennonite girl with a troubled family background falls in love with an Old Order Amish young man, burdened with a stutter and responsibilities within his own family. Strictly forbidden by their two different religions, Annie and Aden must decide if they are willing to risk everything to be together or if they will choose to honor vows made to their churches. Also figuring into the equation is Aden's twin brother, Roman, who was injured in a farming accident and is paraplegic. Aden functions as Roman's legs and Roman has often functioned as Aden's mouth.

There's a reason that I tend to stay away from short stories and novellas. They just aren't satisfying to me in the same way a full-length story with plenty of plot development is. Everything just seems too easy because it happens too quickly; the life struggles that I identify with do not come into play. In this story the biggest hurdle was religious ostracism and, really, how many readers can relate to that? At first I thought that this story was going to be about two families as much as two people, and that would have been much more interesting, from my point of view. I'm used to Cindy Woodsmall tackling real and heart-breaking challenges and these just didn't strike me the same way.

That said, Woodsmall is still an amazing wordsmith. I'll continue to read and hope to see more of what I've found in the Sisters of the Quilt and Ada's House series.

Thank you to Waterbrook Multnomah for my copy of this book and for partnering with bloggers in so many ways!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Momma Wants to Read on July 25, 2012
Format: Hardcover
When Annie's home life seems to be in constant upheaval, her mother sends her to her grandfather's house. While staying with her grandfather, she begins helping Aden at his family's restaurant. As they share more and more time together at the restaurant, they find themselves spending more and more time together outside the restaurant as well. But, when Annie's grandfather threatens to pull out his support to Aden's family restaurant if they don't stop seeing each other, both Aden and Annie are left with a very tough decision.

I just love Cindy's books. She develops her characters so well and you can really understand them. Immediately I felt bad for Annie and was wishing nothing but the best for her. When the story between Aden and Annie began developing, I was wondering how they would ever make it work. One coming from an Amish lifestyle and one coming from a Mennonite lifestyle, never did I imagine how many differences there could be.

What I really enjoyed about this book is the thought process it put me through. I'm always curious as to what divides religions, whether it be dress, conduct, or just beliefs. So, I found it very interesting that two seemingly similar religions were extremely different. But, are they really? I mean if both believe that Jesus died on the cross for our sins and we ask Him into our hearts, then we are going to Heaven right? Does it matter how we met our spouse, whether we kissed during our dating, or if we have electricity or not? Isn't it just about accepting Jesus as our personal Savior? To me, that should be the ultimate question. "Have you accepted Jesus as your personal Savior?" All other differences can be put to the side, but without Jesus, we can't move forward.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By nowamomof3 on May 15, 2012
Format: Hardcover
The scent of Cherry Blossoms by Cindy Woodsmall is a novel. The main character Annie Martin is an young women coming of age in her Old Order Mennonite community. Annie relationship with her mother is strained and she is sent to live with her grandfather, Moses for a while. Moses is also Old Order Mennonite, but has gone into business with the Zooks, an Old Order Amish family, to operate the Zook diner. Annie and Aden Zook used to work together in the diner when she would come and visit her grandfather. It has been a long time since Annie has sees Aden but her attraction to him is a strong as ever. Aden is a shy, artistic young man with a stutter, but Annie can see the words of his heart. Aden's brother was outgoing and the dominate twin, but a freak accident has left him paralyzed, confined to a wheelchair, and total dependent on Aden.
Aden is torn between his feeling towards Annie, and his devotion to God as an Old Order Amish. Aden and Annie know there two worlds are not allowed cross(at least not romantically) and Moses would close the restaurant if they ever acted on those feelings. Annie and Aden must soon decide if their feeling toward each other are worth the trouble and torment it would cause their family and communities.
This is the second book of Woodsmall I have read (to see my review on When the Soul Mends, click here). I really enjoy reading her books about romance in Amish Country. I have a hard time putting them down and I stay up late reading them. Not only do her books it give me a gimps of what it would be like to live the Plain life, but it reminds me of what is was like to fall in love with someone.
The scent of Cherry Blossoms is a true classic romance novel. It is written with dignity and grace.
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