Monday, January 20, 2020

HOW THE LIGHT GETS IN by Jolina Petersheim, Reviewed by Rebecca Maney

"There is a crack, a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in."

Ruth Neufield's life has not only cracked, but there is a gaping hole where her future used to be. Travelling to Wisconsin with her two young daughters, she buries her husband's remains alongside those of her father-in-law, after the two were tragically killed in an overseas act of terroism. Settling into a Mennonite community there, Ruth and her widowed mother-in-law try to overcome sadness and grief, while accepting the hospitality of Elam Albrecht, her husband's cousin and a prosperous cranberry farmer.

It's in this quiet little corner of the world that Ruth begins to walk the road of recovery, not only away from the wounds of a disappointing marriage, but towards the hope of a new kind of tomorrow . . . and then it happens. . . . the unthinkable theft of her happiness.

To say that this book bulges with emotional triggers is an understatement, for the unique plot structure leads the reader along a path that seems almost impossible to navigate, and yet too captivating to abandon. And then the light comes in, shining its brightest through all the cracks and broken places. What a stunning story! 

*I purchased this book and was under no obligation to review it. 


BackCover Blurb:
From the highly acclaimed author of
The Outcast and The Alliance comes an engrossing novel about marriage and motherhood, loss and moving on.

When Ruth Neufeld's husband and father-in-law are killed working for a relief organization overseas, she travels to Wisconsin with her young daughters and mother-in-law Mabel to bury her husband. She hopes the Mennonite community will be a quiet place to grieve and piece together next steps.

Ruth and her family are welcomed by Elam, her husband's cousin, who invites them to stay at his cranberry farm through the harvest. Sifting through fields of berries and memories of a marriage that was broken long before her husband died, Ruth finds solace in the beauty of the land and healing through hard work and budding friendship. She also encounters the possibility of new love with Elam, whose gentle encouragement awakens hopes and dreams she thought she'd lost forever.

But an unexpected twist threatens to unseat the happy ending Ruth is about to write for herself. On the precipice of a fresh start and a new marriage, Ruth must make an impossible decision: which path to choose if her husband isn't dead after all.

Available in digital ebook, paperback, hardcover and audiobook:
Buy How the Light Gets In at Amazon
Buy How the Light Gets in at


  1. Thank you for taking the time to craft this beautiful review, Rebecca! You made my Monday! :)

  2. I hope to read (listen) to this in audio soon. I'm glad we got a chance to post the review now as we hadn't last year. Rebecca does so many reviews and we don't fit them all in, but given her placement of this on her favorites list, I knew we had to! We've all heard so much about this one and I'm hoping this is a reminder for readers not to miss it!

  3. Very intriguing sounding book, and the cover is beautiful! I would love to read this book and so I will be adding it to my TBR list. Thank you so much for sharing your book review. Have a Great week. God Bless you.


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