The Simplicity of Cider by Amy E. Reichert

Sanna loves her family’s apple orchard and brewing new cider flavors, the colors of which come to her in her dreams. Isaac just lost his ex-wife, and is struggling with how to to tell his ten year old son, Bass. On a road trip that leaves them at Sanna’s apple orchard, an accident ends in their spending the summer working for Sanna and her father. But Sanna is soon to discover that their finances have been in trouble and her brother has been scouted by a water park builder to buy out and tear down the family legacy. Charming and filled with mouth-watering descriptions, The Simplicity of Cider will make you long for homemade cider and a dance under the apple trees.

Similar Reads:

Other books by Amy E Reichert include The Coincidence of Coconut Cake and Luck, Love and Lemon Pie.

Another book about a cook with magic abilities is Garden Spells, or its sequel, First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen.

A book about a woman trying to save her family business and finding love along the way is The Hideaway by Lauren K. Denton.

Sanna owned a poster of a map of the Shire from The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings, and both she and Bass were interested in dragons.

The Recipe

Sanna served apple cobbler to her father at the beginning of the book, and at the end to Isaac and Bass and Anders after the orchard had been saved. The following is a super simple recipe for apple cobbler.

Easy Apple Cobbler



  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup salted butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp whole milk
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 can apple pie filling or apple preserves


  1. Preheat oven to 400° F. In a bowl, combine sugar, flour, melted butter, vanilla extract, and milk. Spray non stick cooking spray into six ramekins, then evenly distribute the apple pie filling or preserves among them.
  2. To the flour, gently add one egg and stir just until incorporated. Evenly distribute the flour mixture among the ramekins on top of the pie filling. Place the ramekins on a baking sheet and into the oven on the lowest rack.
  3. Bake for 35 minutes or until the tops are golden brown, and an inserted toothpick comes out clean of raw dough. Allow to cool at least 10 minutes before serving. Top with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, if desired.


Discussion Questions

  1. Einars told Sanna, “Happiness is always worth remembering, even when it was temporary.” What temporary happiness did they each have trouble remembering or holding on to?
  2. Isaac decided to be gone on the trip as long as it took him to be ready to tell Bass about his mom. What did it finally take to get him to tell? Why do you think he waited so long?
  3. What was the connection between Sanna, her truck, Bass, and dragons? Was this the first thing to endear Bass to her?
  4. To whom, or what, did Thad propose? What did he really want most?
  5. Why didn’t Sanna typically get along with kids? How did Bass change that?
  6. What had Sanna done to hurt Bass’s feelings and make him afraid of her? Was it justified for her to do that? How could she have handled it better?
  7. Why did Sanna’s mother leave? Is this possibly why Anders found it easier to forgive and understand his mother than Sanna did?
  8. What was the “imaginary world of cider” only Sanna could see? How did that tie into paintings in the house?
  9. With whom did Sanna share her gift? Why?
  10. How did Bass’s wonder at the fireflies make Sanna feel ten years old again?
  11. Why did Sanna so enjoy making cider, and what did it have to do with restraint and patience?
  12. How did Isaac, Anders, and Eva each help save Idun’s?

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