Mattie’s body has healed from the cancer that nearly took her life... but can she find the man who can mend her lonely heart?
Mattie has faced more in her 23 years than she ever imagined possible. Having successfully battled cancer, she’s ready to reenter the world with hopes for her future. But while she was in and out of hospitals, other Amish girls her age were courting and finding the men they would marry. The only man who’s ever made her heart beat faster is Graham Weaver, her best friend, who has always been there to comfort her, in good times and bad. Is it finally time for their friendship to become something more?
But cruel gossip is spreading, claiming that Graham’s the father of the baby Jenna Yoder’s carrying. Will Mattie’s dreams of a happily-ever-after be crushed before they’ve left the ground?
1. When I read the following verse from 2 Corinthians, I knew it was the perfect verse to guide me while writing this book. I liked how honest the verse was --- that even long ago people still struggled with such emotions and actions. Is there a sin or a flaw in your life that keeps you from being the way God wants you to be? I’m afraid that maybe when I come that you will be different from the way I want you to be, and that I’ll be different from the way you want me to be. I’m afraid that there might be fighting, obsession, losing your temper, competitive opposition, backstabbing, gossip, conceit, and disorderly conduct. --- 2 Corinthians 12:20
2. I particularly loved the character of Mattie Lapp. I appreciated how her journey through cancer had ups and downs... as well as moments of joy and true heartache. Have you, or anyone you know, gone through a cancer battle? What were some of the emotions that you or they went through?
3. Graham’s faith and honor were tested in this novel. He realizes that until Jenna spread a lie about him, his faith had really never been tested. Do you think this is a fair assessment? Does everyone need to go through a difficult time in order to feel strong in his or her faith?
4. Jenna Yoder was a difficult character for me at first. However, I grew to like and even respect her. To me, she personified God’s grace. She repented and asked forgiveness from both Graham and Chris, and therefore had her own happy ending. Was this enough?
5. Mary Zehr had her hands full with her son, Abel. Her struggles with her child reminded me a bit of some of the challenges I faced with my kids when they were 12 and 13. How do you think Abel’s relationship with John will help both of them heal?
6. In THE PROTECTOR, John must choose whether Jayne or Mary is right for him. In THE SURVIVOR, he must come to terms with his choice and change his life. Do you think he did things in the right order, or should he have decided whether or not to become Amish first?
7. Surviving was the obvious theme for this book. Not only did Mattie survive cancer, but Graham survived having his reputation stained, Jenna survived facing the truth --- and its consequences --- and all of them survived a storm. I believe we are all “survivors” of something.... What have you survived?
8. This Amish proverb seemed to fit this novel perfectly: We value the light more fully after we’ve come through the darkness. What “light” do you now value more fully than you used to?
© Copyright 2011 by Shelley Shepard Gray. Reprinted with permission by Avon Inspire. All rights reserved.