Fraying at the Edge


Cindy Woodsmall has a unique talent for taking an Amish novel and making it so relevant for almost everyone, no matter what their religious preference might be. “Fraying at the Edge” is the second book in her The Amish of Summer Grove series and continues the story of two babies accidentally swapped at birth who have spent their lives with the wrong families. The two young women could not be much more different and when forced to live with their biological families for one year, their lives are changed forever.

Ariana misses her Amish family and finds modern life in the city stressful and confusing, however she quickly learns to adapt and even enjoys driving a car. She is only allowed to be in contact with one Amish person, Quill, a long-time friend but she is still angry with him because she believes he lied and deceived her more than once. Nevertheless, Quill is the only person who can help answer some of her questions so she is in contact with him frequently. If she only knew he loved her would she run the other way?

Skylar is not at all happy to be a part of a large Amish family and resents helping with the chores and work around the farm and in Ariana’s restaurant. Not only that but it has become increasingly difficult for her to find the drugs she needs to support her addiction. Is there any hope for Skylar and can the selfless love of her Amish family help her overcome?

“Fraying at the Edge” is such a powerful novel that I find it difficult to put into words. Each character is so well defined that I felt I knew them intimately. Each of them had things in their lives that made them react the way they did. I liked the way Quill and Ariana discussed their faith which made her question why she believed what she did. I also loved seeing the changes in Skylar’s behavior as she responded to the unconditional love of her family.

“Fraying at the Edge” is one of those books that is better read in order in its series. Book one, “Ties That Bind” lays the background necessary to understand “Fraying at the Edge” more completely. Now I cannot wait for the final book of the series.

A copy of this book was provided for review by Blogging For Books.


Family, community, faith, and love.
These “quilt blocks” sewn together made Ariana’s beautiful life.
When they are pulled to pieces, will anything familiar remain?

The Old Order Amish life Ariana Brenneman loved vanished virtually overnight with the discovery that she was switched at birth twenty years ago. Now she’s immersed in the Englischer world, getting to know her mother and under the authority of her biological father, an atheist intellectual with resolute plans to expand Ariana’s worldview. Only Quill Schlabach, a childhood friend living Englisch, can help steady Ariana’s tilting ground between the two worlds, but can she trust him after so many betrayals?

At the same time, Skylar Nash is forced to choose rehab or spend several months with her true relatives, the large Brenneman family and their seemingly backward life—no electricity, no technology, no fun. What the young woman can’t leave behind is her addiction to illegal prescription drugs and deep emptiness from the belief that she doesn’t belong in either family.

New ties are binding Ariana and Skylar to the lives they were meant to have. Can they find the wisdom and strength they’ll need to follow God’s threads into unexpected futures?
Fraying at the Edge is the second novel in The Amish of Summer Grove series.

Read an excerpt of Fraying at the Edge


Cindy WoodsmallCindy Woodsmall is a New York Times and CBA best-selling author of numerous works of fiction and one of nonfiction. Her connection with the Amish community has been featured widely in national media. She lives in the Foothills of the North Georgia Mountains with her family.