The Lambright family's eldest daughter, Abby, runs her own sewing shop. There, she mends the town's clothes and their torn relationships. But the town maidel has sworn off any suitors of her own because of her unrequited love for James Graber, who is about to marry her younger sister, Zanna...I absolutely love Naomi King's books. Abby Finds her Calling was no exception. Even though I read the books completely out of order, they were not hard to follow and could even be read as stand alones should you find yourself not in the mood to continue the series.
On the wedding day, Zanna is nowhere to be found, breaking James' heart. Zanna has brought shame to her family, but there's more in store for them when they discover how far she has fallen. Long-buried secrets come to light, and they test the bonds of the Cedar Creek community. Abby is at the center of it all, trying to maintain everyone's happiness. But will she ever find her own?
Abby's little sister Zanna is all set to marry the man of Abby's dreams, James Graber, when she up and disappears on their wedding day. Everyone is panicking and crying and in a fit because she's absolutely nowhere to be found and no one knows if she plans on coming back. James is heartbroken.
When she finally does turn up we find out that she is... in the family way... to put it nicely. Everyone is upset at James until they find out that James is not to blame for the situation that Zanna has found herself in. But she's not spilling the beans immediately. Even though it's a huge slight to James, he offers to raise the baby as his own and marry Zanna anyway. Tempting, but Zanna knows that even though James is an amazing person, she'd be unhappy marrying him because she doesn't love him.
Abby spends the 6 weeks that Zanna has been shunned helping her sister figure out her own place in their little community and finding ways for her to make money to care for herself and the baby she normally would not have been able to raise. While Zanna hopes that the father of her unborn child comes around and becomes the man she's always wished he would be.
I always learn so much reading these books. And I always have such a good time too. I love Abby and James and Sam and Emma and Zanna... they're all wonderful. So kind and loving and completely supportive of Zanna, even though James is the one who was jilted.
These stories are also fantastic reads because, while they definitely show all the love and compassion and kinship, they also make sure that you know that no one is perfect. Even the Amish. And everyone has secrets. And problems they can't handle on their own. They show that it's how you deal with a situation that makes or breaks you.
Abby is always so steadfast. Even though it would have broken her heart to see her little sister marry the man she's always loved, she wouldn't let that come between, what she thought was true love. She puts her heart and soul in to trying to repair relationships that don't seem repairable and is always supportive of the people that she loves. Even if it's not the kind of support they think they want.
James... now, I know what happens with James because, like I said, I read the books out of order. But it didn't stop me from being mad at him for being TOTALLY CLUELESS when it came to Abby's feelings for him. BUT it also made me love him as a character all the more the way he stood by Zanna even when she didn't feel like she deserved it. Proved he was DEFINITELY the kind of man that Abby deserved in the end.
The end of this book meshes with the beginning-ish of Rosemary Opens Her Heart, so it was great to see how the stories tied together. It's been a while since I read that book so I'd forgotten who's wedding Rosemary and her father-in-law had gone to when she met Abby and the gang. Goes to show you, even though they're separate books and could be read on their own, everyone is connected in some way.
This was the last book in the series for the Cedar Creek gang. And it makes me sad that there won't be anymore. Like saying goodbye to friends you know you won't ever see again. But if you love lighthearted romances or are just looking for a fun uplifting read, I highly recommend this book.