Despite years on the run, Sophie Neumann is determined to care for two young children. She won't abandon them the way she thinks her older sisters abandoned her. But times are growing desperate, and when she falls in with the wrong crowd and witnesses a crime, she realizes fleeing 1850s New York is her only option.
Disappearing with her two young charges into a group of orphans heading west by train, Sophie hopes to find safety and a happy life. When the train stops in Illinois for the first placement of orphans, Sophie faces the most difficult choice of her life.
Reinhold Weiss has finally purchased his own small farm. With mounting debts, a harvest to bring in, and past scars that haunt him, he's in no position to give his heart away . . . but can he say no when his long-lost friend shows up on a nearby train pleading for his help?
Set in the 1850s and spanning the U.S., this entertaining third installment of the Orphan Train series from Hedlund (A Loyal Heart) continues the story of the Neumann sisters. While her older sisters have married well, 17-year-old Sophie Neumann is dating a gang leader in New York City and providing for Olivia and Nicholas, two young orphans. After her boyfriend shoots a rival gang member, Sophie and the orphans flee the city and head west. In Mayfield, Ill., she convinces the Ramseys, a farming family, to take in Olivia and Nicholas. Meanwhile, farmer Euphenia Duff hires Sophie to help on her property. Euphenia, a patient and positive role model, teaches Sophie how to manage a farm and read the Bible. Sophie is also shocked to discover that her new neighbor is Reinhold Weiss, an old family friend. Sophie and Reinhold are attracted to each other, but he knows Sophie's wealthy sisters would want a richer man for her. When Sophie discovers Mr. Ramsey is treating Olivia and Nicholas badly, she proposes a marriage of convenience to Reinhold in order to take the children. Trapped between his own desires and his desire for Sophie to reconnect with her family, Reinhold must decide on the most admirable path forward. This sweet, faith-filled novel beautifully considers the core of what it means to be a family.
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Searching for You by Jody Hedlund takes readers back to 1859. Sophie Neumann is seventeen years old and has been dating Danny Sullivan, a gang leader in the Bowery. After witnessing a shooting between two rival gangs with her friend Anna, they decide it would be in their best interest to leave town. Sophie has been caring for two orphans, Olivia and Nicholas and she will not abandon them. They head to Children’s Aid Society which has an orphan train heading for Illinois in two days. Sophie is hoping to find a family willing to take her and the children. When the train reaches Mayfield, Sophie is faced with a difficult decision. Reinhold Weiss has purchased a farm near Mayfield and is working hard to have a successful harvest. He is surprised when he goes to the Duff farm and finds Sophie. Reinhold knows that Sophie’s sisters have been diligently searching for her, but Sophie does not wish to be found. As time passes, Reinhold finds himself falling for Sophie. Reinhold, though, does not feel it is the right time to fall in love. But then Sophie needs his assistance and Reinhold cannot refuses her request. Find out how Sophie and Reinhold’s story plays out in Searching for You.
Searching for You is the third book in Orphan Train series. I find it beneficial to have read the books in order. Sophie’s story is a little darker than that of her sister’s, but it suits the character. Sophie is trying so hard to make a home for Nicholas and Olivia. Her actions are driven by her love for them as well as the shame she feels. It is this shame that prevents Sophie from reuniting with her older sisters. I thought Searching for You was well-written and it captured my attention. I enjoyed the author’s writing. She has created solid characters that are real. Jody Hedlund provides descriptions, but she is not overly descriptive (we are not bogged down with unnecessary details). You can feel the emotions of the characters. I thought the time period was captured with the attitudes of the people, the clothing, conveyances, the homes, goods available and the descriptions of the towns. Orphan trains were not always welcome and, unfortunately, not every child ended up in a good home. Sophie is high-spirited and determined young woman with a big heart. Euphemia Duff is a delightful character. She is a warm, loving woman with a large family (would love a book with Euphemia’s story). I like that she took Sophie into her home and treated her like a daughter. Some of the Christian elements mentioned are forgiveness of others and oneself, praying to God, and the God loves us and guides us. The Orphan Train series has an ending that will delight readers.
Jody Hedlund’s Searching for You
A captivating, realistic, inspirational and
dramatic read mixed with the elements of
This story starts in the New York following
the 1800’s financial crises. It starts as
several orphans decide to leave New York
City. They are escaping from the gangs
and authorities after witnessing killings.
Sophie Neumann takes the two child she
has cared for years and her friend, Anna
to the Children’s Aid Society in order to
board the “ Orphan Train “. The concept
behind the train was developed to help
keep children clothed and feed plus
housed in return for their labor out West.
Her train ride will result in a lot of surprising
This is a fast moving story that contains a
lot of harsh reality. Amidst all the real
conditions during the time period, the
fictional characters still bring romance
into the story. God’s light shines on His
steady followers allowing relief to burst
The characters are artfully drawn, realistic
and well developed. You will be able to
relate to them in their surroundings.
The description is deftly woven thought-out
The story placing the reader along side each
The author incorporates historical fiction
details into a gripping, interesting, intriguing
and extremely well researched storyline.
A Highly Recommended Read!!
I volunteered to read Searching for You.
Thanks to the Influencer, the author and
Net Gallery for the opportunity. My opinion
is my own