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The Insistence of God
Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca
Early Humans
The Settlers' Empire
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Pulling Down the Barn
Why God?
Ancient Rome
Calamity Jane

Why I Left the AmishWhy I Left the Amish

A Memoir

Saloma Miller Furlong

Finalist: 2012 ForeWord Book of the Year Award

Narrated by Lois Johnson

Available from Audible

Book published by Michigan State University Press

There are two ways to leave the Amish — one is through life and the other through death. When Saloma Miller Furlong's father dies during her first semester at Smith College, she returns to the Amish community she had left twenty four years earlier to attend his funeral. Her journey home prompts a flood of memories. Now a mother with grown children of her own, Furlong recalls her painful childhood in a family defined by her father's mental illness, her brother's brutality, her mother's frustration, and the austere traditions of the Amish — traditions Furlong struggled to accept for years before making the difficult decision to leave the community. In this personal and moving memoir, Furlong traces the genesis of her desire for freedom and education and chronicles her conflicted quest for independence. Eloquently told, Why I Left the Amish is a revealing portrait of life within — and without — this frequently misunderstood community.

Saloma Miller Furlong was born and raised in an Amish community in Ohio, which she left in her quest for freedom and a formal education. She graduated from Smith College in 2007, and was Department Coordinator for Amherst College Department of German and the Program of European Studies until 2011.


“Furlong is relentless and even fearless about describing what went wrong within her family and her community. She relates in painful detail...although there are universal lessons here about the problems inherent in living inside an isolated, closed religious community, it's important to separate out those problems from the more personal problems inherent in particular families.”

—Bill Tammeus, Faith Matters

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University Press Audiobooks
an imprint of Redwood Audiobooks

University Press Audiobooks