Saturday, September 18, 2010

Autumn's Promise by Shelley Shepard Gray - Reviewed

About the Book: (from the publisher)
Until Robert Miller met Lilly Allen, his world had been dark. A widower after only two years of marriage, he's been living in a haze, filled with grief. He feels his life is already over-even though he's only twenty-five.

But his friendship with Lilly changes everything. For the first time since he can remember, he finds new reasons to wake up each day. Soon, he knows he's falling in love with Lilly. However, he also knows a marriage between the two of them can never happen. Lilly Allen is only eighteen. She had become pregnant out of wedlock. And, she's an Englisher. He, of course, is Amish.

Lilly also feels a strong attraction to Robert. She admires his quiet strength and dependability. She's also in awe of his devotion to his wife's memory. Lilly knows she could never measure up to his perfect Amish wife. She also comes to realize that no matter how much she might love a person, she can't change who she is. She loves Robert-not the Amish faith. No matter how much she loves him.she doesn't know if she'll ever be able to give up her independence and reliance on the modern world in order to say vows.

Coming from different worlds, does their love stand a chance?

My Thoughts:
Love is a serious problem for the Amish. Oh, they have no problem loving God and loving and supporting each other, but when they meet someone, strike up a friendship and allow feelings to develop – heaven help them if the other person isn’t Amish!

The other problem the Amish suffer with is the desire to live a life devoid of the hard physical work and lack of choices their lifestyle creates. The lack of electricity, phones, artistic pursuits and all manner of other restrictions create natural problem areas within the human spirit, and sometimes the ramifications are life changing.

I’ve read a lot of Amish fiction this week. I’m ending up with Shelly Sheppard Gray’s Autumn’s Promise. And after a back to back to back reading…well, it all centers around folks struggling to either enter or leave the Amish faith. The main characters struggling in this story are Lilly Allen, Robert Miller and Caleb Graber. Each of these folks are struggling to overcome issues in their lives that present definite barriers to their Amish lifestyle. (well, in Lilly’s case, falling for an Amish guy) And each of them must sort out all manner of issues in order to make a decision about whether or not to be Amish.

Autumn’s Promise is the end of a series that I have not read up until now, so I feel like I’m sort of missing some of the details. However, the story is okay. It’s an inspirational romance. Not a complicated read. My viewpoint is a bit skewed because I’ve read about a lot of Amish folks this week. Personally, I think they just need to move into the 21st century and just join the rest of the world in sorting out their problems instead of creating a host of other problems for themselves by choosing to roll back time a hundred years or so.

Like I said…I’m tired of folks struggling with whether or not to by Amish. I’m ready to move on to something a little more current.

About the Author:

Shelley Shepard Gray is the beloved author of the Sisters of the Heart series, including Hidden, Wanted, and Forgiven. Before writing, she was a teacher in both Texas and Colorado. She now lives in Southern Ohio where she writes full time.

1 comment:

Mocha with Linda said...

I had a little bit of mixed feelings about this one. Overall, I enjoyed it but the ending was a little bit surprising.