Marianne Neumann has one goal in life: to find her lost younger sister, Sophie. When Marianne takes a job as a placing agent with the Children’s Aid Society in 1858 New York, she not only hopes to give children a better life but seeks to discover whether Sophie ended up leaving the city on an orphan train. Andrew Brady, her fellow agent on her first placing trip, is a former schoolteacher who has an easy way with the children–firm but tender and funny. Underneath his handsome charm, though, seems to linger a grief that won’t go away–and a secret from his past that he keeps hidden. As the two team up placing orphans amid small railroad towns in Illinois, they find themselves growing ever closer . . . until a shocking tragedy threatens to upend all their work and change one of their lives forever.
Here it finally is, the next book the Jody Hedlund’s Orphan Train Series. As a fan of Hedlund’s books this one left me feeling happy, sad, excited, and counting the days until the next one comes out. When I first read that this book was going to be about the character Marianne, I was not sure if I was going to like the book, since I did not like her character in the first book. But I decided to give her the chance to change my mind and she did. Marianne grew up within the pages of this book.
Hedlund’s style of writing is excellent. She gave enough description and made the characters different from each other, especially since Andrew’s personality was a little more humorous. That made both main characters clash, because Marianne had a more serious personality. I enjoyed that part very much. Another thing about this book was that I could see it in my head. I could imagine what the characters, the train, and the towns looked like. The description was very well done.
As I kept reading the book, I knew it was going to be one of those books I had to finish and I did! The only thing that left me disappointed is that the next book, Searching for You, is not out yet. And from what I can find out, it won’t be out until December. I guess I will have to reread the two book and the novella again before that.
I highly recommend this book and this series–well the books that are out! I am looking forward to the next book as well.
Want To Read Some More:
Read my review of With You Always, the first book in this series, here.
Want to learn a little how the cover was made? Read about that here. It is really fun to see how covers are picked.
Here are some Q&As with Jody:
What do you hope readers take away from Together Forever?
I pray that in reading this story, not only will readers gain greater insights and a different perspective of the orphan train movement, but that they will also be encouraged to know God is present in their weakest moments. He doesn’t necessarily promise to give us the courage of a lion or to make everything perfect. But He does promise that His strength is available and that His power will rest upon us. Perhaps that strength will be just enough to get out of bed for another difficult day. Or perhaps it will be just enough to face the illness or hurt or heartache we bear. We can rest assured it will always be just enough. His strength is made perfect in our weakness.
What are you working on next?
I’m in the editing phase of the third and final book in the orphan train series, Searching For You, which releases in December. It wraps up the story of the Neumann sisters by finally giving long-lost Sophie her happily-ever-after. I don’t want to give too much away, but I can tell you that Reinhold Weiss also has a major role in helping Sophie as she struggles to make a new life for herself.
Do you have any parting words?
I love hearing from readers! Make sure you stop by one of these places and say hello!
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Title: Together Forever
Author: Jody Hedlund
I received this book from the Bethany House Publishing of the Baker Publishing Group as a gift from the author.
This review is written in my own words and is my honest opinion.
Read about the the next Book!
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?
Lastly, if you have any questions or comments please feel free to comment below! I love hearing from you as well!