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Reviewed by Trudi LoPreto for Readers' Favorite
"Missing Your Smile" by Jerry S. Eicher started slowly but got better and better. It appears like another story we have read and watched on TV many times in the past. However, we soon come to care about the characters and become anxious about their futures.
This book is about Susan, a young girl who leaves the Amish community and travels to Asbury Park, New Jersey, to find happiness. All the people she meets and works with -- Laura, her boss in the bakery, Robby, Laura’s son, Duane Bower, her new boyfriend, Thomas Stoll, the boy she left behind and Teresa Long, a frightened pregnant young girl -- all become alive to the reader.
Susan is the last unmarried sister at home and, much to the unhappiness of her family, decides it is time to leave. She has been betrayed by her boyfriend and believes she has no other alternative but to explore the English life that is so foreign to the Amish life she knows. Susan immerses herself into the English life and gets a job, gets her GED and learns to drive. While working in the bakery she meets Duane. Susan reluctantly goes to lunch with Duane and then slowly continues seeing him. She thinks she might be falling in love with him, but there are complications when their individual customs clash. Nevertheless, Susan tries very hard to fit into her new life and slowly allows herself to imitate the ways of the people around her. Susan is finally getting comfortable in Asbury Park. Teresa comes into the bakery one morning, looking scared and hungry and wanting to talk. Teresa has been watching shows about the Amish life style and recognizes Susan as one of them. Teresa continues to come to the bakery and Susan and Laura befriend her. Teresa’s boyfriend and mother are not supporting the birth of Teresa’s baby, so she asks Susan to find someone to adopt the baby in the Amish Community.
There are many life changing events and paths taken, some you will approve of, others you will say “stop what you are doing”. But you will be rooting for Susan, Laura, Robby and Teresa. If you enjoy reading a faith-based character rich story, this one is for you. Jerry Eicher has written another potential best selling book.