Faith, Family, Love and Reviews

Bethany House #Review: Though Mountains Fall (3 in The Daughters of Caleb Bender) by Dale Cramer

About the Book: Inspired by Actual Events!

“I want you to promise you will always be my sister.”

There were tears in Miriam’s eyes as their foreheads touched and Rachel whispered, “No matter what. Always.”

Now in its fourth year, the Amish settlement in Mexico is thriving. But as new settlers arrive, sons and daughters marry, babies are born, and crops grow thick, a storm looms on the horizon. And Caleb Bender knows–perhaps better than anyone–that the worst of storms don’t come from the western skies.

They come on horseback.

When their very existence is threatened, the Amish turn to the Mexican government for help, only to discover that the rulers of men are fickle and security is an illusion. Tried by fire and riven by war, Caleb and Domingo come to understand that the kingdom of God is not to be found in land or buildings or gold or armies, but in the hearts of peaceful men trying to feed their families.

Watching helplessly as daughters Rachel, Miriam, and Emma are drawn inexorably toward their separate destinies, Caleb is forced to confront the most important decision of his life.


You can purchase the book at Bethany House’s website.


My Opinion *may contain spoilers*:


Wow, wow, wow!  I don’t want this series to end, I totally need a book 4, 5, and 10 – seriously – I was crying through out this book.  I had the pleasure of reading Paradise Valley (Book 1) and The Captive Heart (Book 2) and as much as I enjoyed both of those they didn’t affect me the way Though Mountains Fall did.  This is the fourth year of the Amish settlement in Mexico and Miriam and Domingo finally announce that they are preparing to marry – even though Miriam will be banned.  However, that isn’t the worst of things to come, as the settlement must deal with bandits and renegade soldiers who are just as bad as the bandits.


As I said I cried through out this book – I could feel Miriam’s mother’s anguish over ‘losing’ a daughter, the suffering of a young girl and boy at the hands of evil men and the subsequent moving of the entire settlement.  I’d love to read more of Levi’s life, of Domingo’s and Miriam’s as they begin a family and the rest of the Bender Mexican Amish in a another book, while this book summed things up from the other two it also raised more questions and I have to admit Dale Cramer’s writing makes it seem as if you’re there in the midst of their life – his writing is real and having read the entire series I wasn’t ready to let Though Mountains Fall end.


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The Captive Heart by Dale Cramer


About the Book from Bethany House:


Ravaged by disease, preyed upon by ruthless bandits, the Bender family’s second year in Mexico has taken a grievous turn. Faced with impossible choices, the expatriate Amish discover, more than ever before, what it means to live by faith and not by sight

But it’s Miriam who must make the hardest choice as her heart takes her on a new and dangerous course. Domingo. “He is gentle,” his sister said, “until someone he loves is threatened.” Is Miriam that someone?

“Cualnezqui,” he often calls her–the Nahuatl word for Beautiful one. The chiseled native has proven himself a man of principle, grace and power, yet is he the pearl of great price for whom Miriam would sacrifice everything, or is he merely a friend? Tormented by conflicting emotions, she’s haunted by vivid dreams: Dressed in the coarse cotton pants and shirt of a peasant, she stands on the precipice of a sun-washed ridge searching desperately for Domingo. Domingo the fierce. Domingo the protector.

Domingo the forbidden.


My Opinion:


If you are looking for a book to renew your enjoyment of Amish fiction, then look no further than Dale Cramer’s, The Captive Heart.  Filled with unexpected twists and turns this will have you flipping the pages long into the night, like it did me – I couldn’t go bed until I finished this book!  While it does have romance in it, this isn’t the kind that makes you want to gag or throw the book out, it’s a romance that seems real more than faked or pushed and it doesn’t involve a lot of kissing or hand holding, etc between two unmarried people.


I think knowing that the book is based on true events, makes it even that more exciting.  The Amish aren’t known for branching out – although they do it more today in search of land – or for evangelizing but this books takes them out of ‘Amish country’ that we and they are familiar with and puts them smack dab in Mexico which is facing it’s own tumultuous future.  Domingo and Miriam both want to put family and God first but don’t know how to do that without betraying one or the other but eventually realize how it could work if given the time.  This is an exceptional book and I can’t wait to read another book in the Caleb Bender series to see where this new Amish community ends up.


**Disclaimer:  I was given a copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review, no other compensation was given.

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