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Josiah for President: A Novel Paperback – October 3, 2012
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Just in time for all those election-season “presidential reads” library displays comes this novel about going back to the basics. Former congressman Mark Stedman returns to his home state after failing to secure the presidential nomination. On the way, he is involved in a car accident and is assisted by Amish farmer Josiah Stoltzfus. His simple values and dedication to hard work impress Mark, who talks Josiah into running for president. VERDICT Despite the somewhat ridiculous premise, many readers who long for a simpler way of life will enjoy this character- and plot-driven novel by a former staff writer for comedian Bob Hope and prolific inspirational author. (Library Journal)
'Martha Bolton is one fine writer. I don't know much about writing -- normal writing, that is -- but I do know what I enjoy reading. Everything on the page is crisp and pulls you right through the story. It's like wine. I know nothing about wine either except that when I take a sip, I know whether I like it or not. Her writing, to me, is delicious.' -- Gene Perret, Book author and writer for Bob Hope and The Carol Burnett Show
'A great read that challenges you to think outside the box! Josiah comes to life via his interaction with Congressman Mark Stedman in a unique and interesting way. Martha Bolton brings forward a character who is believable and who embodies many of the back to basics traits that Americans crave.' -- Marsha Blackburn, United States House of Representatives
“Josiah for President is a compelling tale of an unlikely friendship, and an even more unlikely agreement. Heartwarming and funny, Martha’s book will leave you cheering for the underdog, while believing there is still hope for America’s future.” -- Michael Catt, Senior Pastor, Sherwood Baptist Church
“In the complex political world of positioning ... negotiations ... Strategies and world policies ... The wisdom of a 2000 year old book guides Josiah and rally's a pubic hungry for a simple truth. Martha Bolton has created an inspirational modern day parable that is a reflective example of the things that really matter in our nations condition of political and economic distress.” -- Rick Eldridge, Studio Executive/Film Producer
'Martha Bolton and I shared the longest laugh of either of our lives over lunch one day in California. It was one of those laugh fests that kept going--lasting several hours at least, with other patrons even getting in on it, including Dick van Dyke who was dining a few tables away. Martha and I became fast friends and have been ever since. I love Martha's writing style, I love Martha, and I love her new novel, Josiah for President. It's a fresh take on politics and a real twist for Amish fiction. You're going to love it! And her!' -- Lani Netter, Lani Netter Productions (wife of Gil Netter, producer of The Blind Side)
'Martha Bolton's writing never disappoints. Josiah For President demonstrates her ability to get the reader turning each page to discover what happens next. It is a gripping and most timely novel'. -- Lord Taylor of Warwick, House of Lords
'JOSIAH FOR PRESIDENT by Martha Bolton is the definitive novel of the 21st Century, seamlessly combining humor and humanity. A long-time writer for my cartoon feature 'The Lockhorns,' as well as for comic legends including Bob Hope, Martha Bolton has maximized her genius for comedy and her brilliant insights on American politics. JOSIAH FOR PRESIDENT is both timely and timeless. It describes a perfect storm of event leading to the White House, motivated by real people we grow to love. I was unable to put the book down. For a totally uplifting read, JOSIAH FOR PRESIDENT is number one on any list. Thank you, Martha.' -- Bunny Hoest, President and CEO Wm. Hoest Enterprises, Inc.
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Mark is greatly impressed with the quiet wisdom and courage of Josiah and gets the wild idea of running him as an independent, write-in candidate against his own former party’s Harley Phillips, a senator from Mississippi, and the other party’s Karen Ledbetter, Governor of Kansas. At first, Josiah adamantly refuses because the Amish don’t become involved in national politics. However, the more he thinks about it, the more he wonders if the whole process which led up to the situation might not be of God’s doing, so he finally agrees, but only if Mark will be his running mate. At the same time, his decision runs afoul of the local Amish church officials. How will the campaign go? Who will win the election? And what will happen between Josiah and his bishop? A couple of common euphemisms (blasted, dadgum–both used by Harley) occur, but there is nothing really objectionable.
The biggest complaint I saw in both professional and reader reviews is that the book has a “somewhat ridiculous premise” which “never really feels like it could be real.” Remember, after all it is fiction. Yet, one reviewer wrote, “Although while reading this novel, I was aware that the premise of the story was far-fetched and probably would never happen, I truly wanted this for our country.” Evidently a lot of other people, including myself, feel the same way. Someone else said, “This has to be the most boring book. The plot was awful. The exchange in characters dull. I don’t recommend this author to anyone; they need to rethink a career choice.” People are entitled to their own opinions, but Martha Bolton is an Emmy-nominated and Dove-nominated author of over eighty books of inspiration and humor who was a staff writer for Bob Hope for over fifteen years. The book has endorsements by Marsha Blackburn, United States House of Representatives; Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas; and Beverly Lewis, inspirational author; among others. It is a fascinating story, and I don’t want to give away the ending, but the reader should be prepared to shed a few tears.
Josiah is a simple, humble Amish man with the wisdom of the ages and the ability to keep his integrity and honesty at the forefront of his life. He helps pull a car out of a ditch and then uses his simple tools to try to fix it. The driver is, conveniently, a congressman who has tried running for president, has resigned from Congress, but wants only the best for our country. He thinks he has found it in Josiah and begins a campaign to draft him for the presidential ballot. I cannot explain the simplicity and refreshing feeling that came over me as I read this tale. I know it cannot happen, but it would be so wonderful if we could have people like Josiah running this country. They would have only the good of the people and the country as their purpose and not the glamour, wealth and ego that seem to go along with everyone connected with politics today.
I thoroughly enjoyed the story and I think that it provides something for everyone to think about. What if this were possible? What if we could have leaders who truly had the best interests of the people at heart? What if?
I downloaded this Kindle edition from Zondervan and NetGalley.com for my honest review. I also purchased this book because I wanted to keep it in my library.
You can find this review on my blog at http://wp.me/p2pjIt-6u, and on Good Reads at http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/650005788.
Was it a coincidence that Mark Stedman had veered off course due to his GPS system and an accident landing him smack dab into Amish territory where he had his first encounter with Josiah Stoltzfus? I think not! God does work in mysterious ways.
The way the characters of Josiah and Mark handled the stress of campaigning and mudslinging from their opponents’ was refreshing to say the least.
I started wondering what would happen if we had a Josiah/Mark team running for President/Vice President in our Country. What a fascinating run that would be!
Thank you author Martha Bolton for a wonderful thought provoking read!
I can't wait to see the Musical Josiah for President this summer at the Blue Gate Theater in Shipshewana, Indiana. I know it is going to be GREAT!
I believe any true American, Foreign National, Black, White, Religion,etc would like to see this type of President be put into office. Josiah was as true to his religion as a man can be. I like the quote that was made, that it might be he was born for such a time as this. That is one of my favorite scripture quotes from the Book of Esther.
Goes to show that any "HONEST" man can win.
I loved this book. It will be a keeper.