Cindy Woodsmall – The Scent of Cherry Blossoms

In America live plain people. Plain people can be divided in mainly 2 groups: Mennonites and Amish. And between those groups, are different communities who allow different modern and western facilities as electricity, telephone and other things. The scent of cherry blossoms is a love story about Annie (Mennonite) and Aden (Amish).
Because Annie has a quarrel with her mother, she stays temporarily with her grandfather. In the same town as her grandfather, also live Amish people. Her grandfather is even a business partner of Adens family. Because Amish people can’t have electricity and it is a regulation of the law that restaurants do have electricity, otherwise they have to close their business, Adens family have an agreement with Annies grandfather. Because he is a Mennonite, he has electricity and can supply Adens family.
Adens family has been struck hard. Because of the same accident, Adens brother Roman can’t walk anymore and  also his father has a poor health and can’t walk or stand all day. Aden has taken over the family diner, with Roman to help him. But Roman was a mechanic…. Ever since the accident Roman is very gloom, and hasn’t much faith anymore. He is dependent of his brother, who has his own grief. Then Annie comes to stay with her grandfather. She helped out in the diner before, and when Roman tries to help his uncle, repairing his generator, she helps out in the diner again.
Then it becomes clear, that Adens still loves Annie and she falls in love with him. But there can’t be any future for them, because both of them have joined their own church. If they want to marry someone of the other faith, they either have to leave their church, and be banned, or wait a long time before the other is accepted in their church and faith. Will all be well in the end?

The name of the novel is related to the orchard of Annie’s grandfather. He planted every year a cherry tree while he waited for permission to marry Annie’s grandmother. And after their marriage, he continued planting a tree a year. Their only daughter, Annie’s mother, was forced to marry after getting caught kissing with a boy, when fully clothed sitting on her bed. Of course, that was not a happy marriage and Annie’s father walked out on them 10 years ago.

Nowadays in the western world, we can’t imagine that different religions can prevent a marriage.
Then again, 50 or 60 years back, people from different churches couldn’t marry, with approval from their families.

I liked reading the story. Later, when I thought about the book, the story of Romeo and Julia came to mind. Will Aden and Annie yield to the counteraction of everybody and anyone or is there a happy end?

About the author

Cindy Woodsmall is a New York Times best-selling author whose connection with the Amish community has been featured on ABC Nightline and on the front page of the Wall Street Journal. She is the author of six novels, two novellas and Plain Wisdom, a work of non-fiction co-authored with her dearest Old Order Amish friend. Cindy lives in Georgia with her family.