Monday, November 07, 2005

Spotlighting: Levi's Will by W. Dale Cramer

"We thought you were dead."

It wasn't exactly the welcome Will expected when he returned home eight years after running away. Didn't the prodigal son get a fatted calf? Wasn't there supposed to be a party thrown in his honor?

Instead, his father turns his back on him, walks away, and says, "Don't bring that in my house."

Will's life has fallen apart. Eight years of lies have finally caught up with him, and threaten to destroy everything he has worked for. Now he must face the mistakes of the past and seek forgiveness.


Set amongst the Old Order Amish, LEVI'S WILL is a superbly told story of generational sin, and the forgiveness and love one can only find through God. In a recent interview with Focus on Fiction, W. Dale Cramer reveals that this was a fictionalized story of his father's life.

Cramer opens the book in 1985, before taking us back in time to 1943 when Will makes his break from the Old Order Amish community, leaving behind a rigid father and pregnant girl.

Throughout the story, we are transported between present and past; following Will as he makes his way in life, struggling to overcome the judgmentally under which he grew up. Will leans on the one thing he understands, hard work, but fails to notice that he's making similar mistakes to those of his father. It soon becomes apparent that the sins of one generation carry over to the next.

Cramer drew me into Will's story, capturing my attention from start to finish. It's not often you find a book that has you genuinely caring for the characters, silently screaming at the unjustness of actions, and praying that God's love will soften hearts. LEVI'S WILL is one of those rare treasures.

Grab yourself a copy, settle into a comfy chair, and be transported into another world that will touch your heart and stay with you long after you turn the last page.


Forgiveness is one of the hardest things we are called to do. The deeper the hurt, the harder it is to forgive.

But without forgiveness, we become tangled in rebellion and hatred. Resentment will alienate us from those around us. For me, it also brings bitterness.

Forgiveness doesn’t come naturally, and it isn’t always easy. But it is necessary.

LEVI’S WILL is a timeless lesson in one man’s search for forgiveness. A lesson we can all gain a measure of wisdom from.

To see more reviews, visit

Christian Fiction Reviewer

Focus on Fiction

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