Review: Field Of Daisies by Barbara Hattemer

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nullBook Info:

Date Published: March 12, 2012

Publisher: OakTara

Author: Barbara Hattemer

She knew it was love when he wove a chain of daisies for her hair.

Andrea and Lans Mulder met as young teenagers on Andrea’s family farm in Pennsylvania, renewed their romance as young adults during an enchanted week in Paris, and married in a storybook wedding in a field of daisies.

With two growing children, their life has been as close to perfect as you can imagine. But when the destructive degenerative disease of Alzheimer’s strikes the third generation of Andrea’s family, can even a made-for-each-other couple stand strong—and stay together? Especially when Andrea herself faces the worst news of her life?

A poignant tale of hope, faith, and the determination to beat seemingly impossible odds that might change yours, and your family’s lives, for generations to come!

Buy Field Of Daisies At:

Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |

Meet The Author:

Barbara writes novels highlighting difficult subjects, but her books are mingled with delightful descriptions of nature, romance, and deep relationships. Readers say her stories are such pleasurable reading, they don’t want them to end. Educated at Smith College and Harvard Business School, Barbara worked for a management consulting firm and rose to Assistant to the President before raising four children. She has written many articles over the years that have been published in magazines and books. Now she is writing fiction. Recently, she wrote Field of Daisies, the story of three generations of Alzheimer’s. While the romance is pure fiction, the facts about Alzheimer’s are taken from her family’s experience. She wrote the book to give hope to those, like her, who have Alzheimer’s in their families and fear they may be next. Her second novel, An Island Just for Us, has been accepted for publication by OakTara and will be out soon. A story of a summer romance on an island in Maine’s beautiful Penobscot Bay, it addresses the subject of readily available pornography and its effect on young people and our culture. She is uniquely gualified to write this book because she fought pornography for 18 years, published a reseach book on the harms of pornography and gave hundreds of interviews on radio and television. The most notable interviews were with Dr. James Dobson’s Focus On The Family radio program and with Bryant Gumble on The Today Show. She frequently debated the ACLU on television as well. She was featured in Christian Herald Magazine and Focus on the Family’s Citizen and received Christian Herald’s first James 1:22 Award for her work in this field. Dr. D. James Kennedy filmed her for two days and aired an hour-long video of her work on his television program.

You can find Barbara Here:
Website  |  Blog  |  Facebook  |  Twitter

My Favorite Scene:

  “Settling her on the bench, Lans faced her as if he were ready to do battle. Searching her brilliant blue eyes, he found them enchanting, the color of an ocean on a sunny day. They sparkled with sunlight in the daytime and candlelight at night. Whatever time or condition of the day, they invited him to join in their fun. Her eyes exuded a warmth he did not have. His was an analytical mind. Good at figures, at problem solving, he lacked the depth of compassion he found in Andrea. When she invited him into her world, he experienced more of life. He felt complete, Realizing he needed her, he could not let her go this time.

  Andrea interrupted his thoughts. “Will you stay here after you graduate?”

  “I had thought about it, but now I’m not sure. I wasn’t prepared for how I felt when I saw that Chico character sweep you into his arms. Since then I haven’t been able to think about anything but how easy it would be to lose you again. If I stay here, I’ll leave you vunerable to all those crazy American boys.”

  Andrea glanced at Lans and laughed. “You must be joking.”

  He studied her in complete seriousness.Did she feel what he was feeling, an inexpressable yearning that had built mysteriously inside him in all their years of trying to spend time together? A yearning he had crushed down until he thought it had gone away. “I know it’s been alot of years in between, Andrea, and we haven’t spent much more than a month together overall, but there were all those letter and all those years trying to get together when we were younger.”

  “Yes, it seems I’ve known you all my life,” Andrea spoke in little more than a whisper.

  I don’t know what happened that changed things between us that weekend at Dartmouth. I thought you had changed.”

  “I’ve always been the same, Lans. It was you who changed. It was like you were someone else. College had gone to your head and you were trying to fit in with all the kids from boarding schools. The boy who had loved the simple pleasures at the farm seemed to have died. I was heartbroken. And when I told you I had decided to go to Smith to be near you, you didn’t say a thing. You left me thinking you couldn’t have cared less.”

  His heart panged as he thought how much he must have hurt her. “Since you were already commited, I didn’t know how to tell you I wouldn’t be there. Nothing worked out that weekend, and I didn’t know how to deal with it, so I didn’t.” He turned to her again. “I’m sorry if I hurt you, Andrea. I didn’t want to.”

  “After this week, it doesn’t hurt anymore.” She smiled at him. “This week has erased all those sad memories.”

  The tightness in his throat relaxed, and his heart flip-flopped. He took her in his hands. Then, fumbling into his pocket, he withdrew a small box and handed it to her. “They don’t have fraternities here, so I don’t have a pin to give you, but I want you to wear this promise ring. It’s a promise that I’ll come back to the States as soon as I graduate so we can spend time with each other and explore a future together. Are you willing to commit to that, Andrea? I’m in no position to offer you anything more than that right now, but I want you to know that you’re still the only girl I’ve ever thought about spending my life with. I can’t bear the thought of losing you before we have a chance to see it it can work. Will you accept it? It means no impetuous eloping with Chico or his like.”

  “Oh there’s only one like him. And there’s only one like you. I’d be thrilled to wear your ring and explore a future together when you come home.” Her eyes sparkled as he slipped the ring onto her finger.

  “I can’t believe this is happening after all these years and in Paris, of all places. I always dreamed it would be at the farm.”

  “Then you didn’t give up on me these three and a half years?”

  “No, I tried to tell myself it was over, but something deep inside wouldn’t let go.”

  “I’m grateful,” he said. Taking her in his arms and holding her close, he kissed the top of her forehead and nuzzled his face in her hair.”

Meet The Characters:

Andrea Mulder: Andrea was a very free-spirited girl that turned into a very strong woman. Starved for family time with her parents, she turned to her grandparents for the constant love and affection she craved. Time on her grandparent’s farm became her oasis.

Lans Mulder: I was very torn about my feelings for Lans. While he was a very loving husband and devoted to his kids and Andrea in most ways, he wasn’t there for Andrea when she needed him most. I was appalled at his selfishness at times. Needless to say, he was not my idea of a storybook hero.

Evelyn Collins: Andrea’s mother who later suffered from Altzheimer’s. She was a socialite that traveled the world with her husband but, in the end, became a huge disruption to Andrea’s life due to her disease.

Katharine Mulder: Lans mother and Andrea’s best friend. Katharine was a very understanding and compassionate lady. She was there to help Andrea through some of the toughest times in her life.

Fritz and Laura Klinghof: Andrea’s grandparents, Fritz and Laura, gave Andrea the “paternal love” she so desperately needed. Fritz’s eyes always sparkled with life and Laura was always ready with the hugs Andrea longed for.

My Thoughts:

Andrea met Lans when both their parents met at the farm for a three week work session. Both their fathers were writing a book together and the farm offered the peace and relaxation they needed. Andrea dreaded having to entertain Lans but soon found herself enjoying his company. Both grew up missing time spent with their parents and soon realized they had alot in common. When the three weeks came to an end, it ended with a promise, a promise that they would see each other again. Through the course of several years they managed to keep in contact through letters and a few hap-hazard visits. One thing that was obvious throughout the entire book was the bond they shared and their love that would last a lifetime.

When Andrea’s mother entered the first stages of Altzheimer’s, life seemed to go on as normal as possible for her family but Evelyn soon progressed to the point that it took Andrea’s ever waking moment to care for her. Lans had a very hard time dealing with the strain it put on their marriage but, through it all, love prevailed.

I really enjoyed this book. It had me in tears several times and there were several scenes I could have chosen as my favorite. However, I chose a happier scene to share. I’ll let you save your tears for later when you read the book for yourself. It really opens the eyes of the reader about Altzheimer’s, the way the disease progresses and the stress it has on the families involved. The only negative thing I can say is, although I am a Christian, I felt like the last quarter of the book went from being a novel to being a Bible study. It felt like the entire focus of the book shifted. Having said that, I am glad I read it. Field Of Daisies had me in tears three quarters of the way through, and I hope you will check it out for yourself.

Field Of Daisies is a story of love lost and found but, most importantly, it deals with Altzheimer’s Disease and the effects it has, not only on the person with the disease, but also on all those around them. It can cause a great strain in families and sometimes rip families apart. The patient deals with memory loss, loss of alot of their normal mental functions, but also the loss of their dignity. Altzheimer’s generally effects those 65 or older but there is younger onset Altzheimer’s that can effect people in their 40’s and 50’s. For more information go to Alzheimer’s Association.

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**A copy of this book was provided by for my honest review**

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