/ 2022 / Reviews

When The English Fall

Jacob cares for his family and Amish community in Lancaster County. He works his farm, makes furniture for English clients, and writes about his simple days in his diary. When “angels in the sky” destroy Earth’s electric grid, barriers crumble between the plain folk and their modern neighbors. In When the English Fall, author David Williams embraces the Amish world’s slower pace, allowing readers to wrestle alongside Jacob as he deals with past wounds, daily worries, and mounting danger. Simple but immersive prose allows the reader to consider themes such as pacifism versus protection of one’s family, church hurt, and the brokenness of contemporary culture through an outsider’s eyes. When the English Fall tells a bittersweet tale of community and commitment that plunges fearlessly into hard questions about the end of the world.

Best for: Fans of slow-burn post-apocalyptic stories and non-romantic Amish fiction.

Discern: Violence, suicide, and murder, but with minimal descriptions; one brief description of slaughtering a cow; one character appears to get messages from God during an illness, but this is left open to interpretation; characters practice pacifism in the face of suffering.

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