Berkley, Jun 2010, $14.00
Three years ago Anna Beiler left her Amish home in Pleasant Valley, Pennsylvania to live with the English. However, when she comes home she doesn’t return alone. Instead she is accompanied by an under one year old baby, Gracie who she claims as her daughter.
The Plain People are stunned that unmarried Anna had a child out of wedlock and some want to shun her. She conceals from everyone even her loved ones that the baby is not hers; she took the infant after her friend Janni, the child’s mother died, to keep the little girl safe from her abusive father Pete. Anna prays that hiding amongst the Plain folks will keep the baby safe., but fears what she might bring upon her family as she moves in with her brother Joseph and his wife Myra and is welcomed by her father, her sister Leah (see Leah’s Choice) and her brother-in-law and his family. Anna also finds herself attracted Joseph's machine shop partner, Samuel Fisher, who seemed like slow learner to her as a child but now she appreciates that he is not simple but a reflective thinker. As she feels welcomed and her baby accepted, Anna looks back at her reckless behavior praying that her community will forgive her.
The third Pleasant Valley Amish romance (see Rachel’s Garden) is an interesting look at a young woman who left but has come back apparently tainted. Although Samuel and the lead female protagonist’s family and community play major roles and Gracie’s father a minor but key part, the title is accurate as this is clearly Anna’s Return. She holds the well written entertaining story line together as Marta Perry provides a charming second chance at life romance with a bit of late suspense.