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Amish Guys Don't Call

by Debby Dodds

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721,799,816 (5)3
Samantha is already facing scrutiny and anxiety at the start of her junior year, as she's finally been accepted into the popular girls' clique called "The Sherpas." But when she realizes that her new boyfriend Zach was raised Amish, Sam must tackle a whole new set of challenges! Zach has chosen not to end his Rumspringa, instigating a potential shunning from his family. Not only that, but Sam's new friends can't miss this opportunity to tease and torment her.Sam has never really come to terms with her parents' divorce, so when her world crashes down on her in the form of cyberbullying and Zach's apparent return to the Amish community, she reverts to old, illegal habits. Does Sam even want friends like these? And, will her culture-crossed love with Zach find a way?… (more)



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For a Lancaster County native like me, Amish Guys Don't Call was a nostalgic look at my home town with lots of local references to restaurants, clubs and other locations. The author attended Lancaster Country Day School and clearly loves her native soil as well.

Her story of an "English"* girl who falls for a former Amish boy is tender and kind with a solid dose of mean girls mixed in. Samantha has arrived in Lancaster County after being caught shoplifting in Philadelphia, a compulsion she continues to fight throughout the book. Her mother seems to care little for her daughter and spends most of her time in the city, and her father is out of the picture. Swept up into the cool girls' group, Samantha struggles to find her place as she starts dating an unusual young man and make sense of her "friends."

My biggest criticism of the book was that Samantha never figured out that her boyfriend was Amish. Dodds addresses this in the notes at the end, recognizing that most readers would have understood (the title is a dead give away) but suggesting that Samantha had not lived in Lancaster County long enough to make the connection and that the cultures are divided in ways that would make cross connections uncommon.

This book would be an excellent read for young adults, helping them understand a different culture and better navigate their own.

*Amish refer to non-Amish as English.
  witchyrichy | May 10, 2018 |
This wonderful young adult book hits all the right notes: a budding romance, a difficult moment, and clear realizations about life, love, and family. The author utterly nails the way teenaged girls think and talk, and the protagonist's voice is clear, solid, and funny as hell. You understand her problems with empathy, and go along for the ride gladly. It's a page-turner with fun twists and turns, and a very satisfying read. Amazing! ( )
  knitcrazybooknut | Jul 10, 2017 |
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