Visiting Amish country... A Sister's Wish & An Amish Family Christmas by Shelley Shepard Gray (Blog Tour Reviews & Giveaway)

It's been a while since I read and reviewed any Amish fiction. I've been wanting to try out this author for a while, so I thought this was a good opportunity to do so. Read what I thought about these last two books in The Charmed Amish Life series (doesn't that sound just like a place you'd want to visit?) and check out the author's giveaway below...

A Sister's Wish (The Charmed Amish Life, #3)
A Sister's Wish
(The Charmed Amish Life #3)
by Shelley Shepard Gray
Amish Romance
Paperback & ebook, 272 Pages
September 27th 2016 by Avon Inspire

Summary

In Shelley Shepard Gray’s third book in her Charmed Amish Life series, a respectable young woman finds herself falling for an Amish man from the wrong side of the tracks.

Amelia Kinsinger is the perfect Amish woman—at least according to her neighbors. And while Amelia takes pride in her role as homemaker, she’s also harboring a secret: She’s been in love with bad boy Simon Hochstetler for as long as she can remember. Too bad he’s about as far from “perfect” as an Amish man could get… but that’s exactly why she’s so drawn to him.

Life hasn’t been kind to Simon. He ran away from an abusive home at fifteen and things went downhill from there. Eventually, Simon landed in prison. But the experience changed him. Now back in Charm as a grown man, he’s determined to make a new life for himself and not think too much about his wild past…unless it pertains to Amelia.

He’s loved Amelia for years. To him, she represents everything good and kind in the world. When he realizes that she returns his affections, he starts calling on her in secret, even though her older brother Lukas—who just happens to be Simon’s best friend—has made it perfectly clear that Amelia deserves better. Simon disagrees and believes he’s the only one who can truly make her happy.

But when Amelia gets hurt, it sets off a chain of events that forces them to consider their future together—and face their past mistakes. There’s a chance for love… but only if Simon dares to trust Amelia with the secrets of his past.

  
  
   
(Affiliate links included.)

My Review


A SISTER'S WISH was a fun and sweetly romantic story about Amelia, who finds that she has some very overprotective and meddling siblings, and Simon, who has a rough past and doesn't know if he'll ever be good enough for Amelia. There were plenty of cameos from the rest of the Kinsinger clan from the prior two books, enriching the story with all the teasing and love of family. The story had an interwoven theme of redemption and of those who have been lost being found. This was an enjoyable story for Christian and Amish Romance readers alike.

I really loved Amelia's family, even with all their faults. I also loved Simon and had compassion for his situation. There were times when the switches in point-of-view threw me a little when they weren't from Amelia's or Simon's perspective. At the same time, I also enjoyed getting to know the other characters more. Some parts dealing with Simon and others not letting his past go were upsetting. Really, I just wanted to shake some characters at how unfair they were being. It's good when a story can pull emotions from me and there were plenty of feels here in relation to that an in relation to the romance. Thankfully, everything is resolved in the end.

I really liked this line:
If one was loved, one had the world.

In the end, was it what I wished for? This was sweet, fairly short, and overall a romantic, fun read. I'll definitely be up for reading more from this author!

Content: Some references to abuse, but clean.

Source: Received a complimentary copy from the publisher through Litfuse Publicity, which did not require a review nor affect it in any way.

An Amish Family Christmas (The Charmed Amish Life #4)
An Amish Family Christmas
(The Charmed Amish Life #4)
by Shelley Shepard Gray
Amish Romance
Paperback & ebook, 288 Pages
October 18th 2016 by Avon Inspire

Summary

In Shelley Shepard Gray’s fourth book in her Charmed Amish Life series, an unlikely Amish romance reveals that Christmas is a time for family, miracles—and love.

Ever since his father died in a tragic fire, Levi Kinsinger has felt adrift. Newly returned to Charm, Ohio, Levi is trying to fit into his old life, only to discover he seems to have outgrown it.

But when Julia, his young widowed neighbor, asks for his help with a Christmas project, Levi finds a sense of purpose for the first time in months. She and her daughter are new to Charm and could use a friend, a job Levi takes personally. Soon enough, friendship grows into attraction, but Levi can’t help having doubts. There’s something about Julia that doesn’t ring quite true…

Like Levi, Julia Kemps has survived her fair share of hardships—but only by hiding the truth of her past. Being an unmarried mother in an Amish community was unthinkable. Feeling hopeless, Julia did the only thing she could do: she moved to a new town and pretended to be a widow. But meeting Levi, she’s hopeful for the first time. Little by little, she begins to imagine telling him her darkest secret, and eventually…perhaps even sharing her life with him.

Christmas is a time for family, and as the holiday draws closer, Julia and Levi will have to face their pasts together…in order to find the healing, support and love they so desperately desire.

   
(Affiliate links included.)

My Review

AN AMISH FAMILY CHRISTMAS was a heartfelt story about a mother and her care for her daughter as she tries to protect her from her past and the man who falls in love with them. The story was full of family, friendships, and small-town charm. It was also heartbreaking in parts, while being sweet in others. An enjoyable read for Christian and Amish Romances fans.

This story was a little rougher around the edges than the last one because of Julia's past and how that past catches up with her. It was so sad, but a the same time, endearing. I couldn't help but cheer on Julia and respect her strength and resolve to do what it took to protect her daughter. I also could relate with Levi while he tries to deal with his confusion. One of the things the author does so well is to allow realistic emotions to come through her characters, emotions that the reader might experience themselves or need to work through.

Again, I loved being in the middle of the Kinsinger family. They're a fun bunch and I've liked reading about this last sibling who is finally finding his own way. I liked the honesty of the characters as well as the sweet romance that develops between Levi and Julia. The story had a little bit more excitement with the threat of Julia's past, bringing a slight suspense and intensity that wasn't in the last book. The ending was very sweet and perfectly ties up this series.

In the end, was it what I wished for? This was a endearing story and one that I enjoyed.

Content: Some references to abuse, but clean.

SourceReceived a complimentary copy from the publisher through Litfuse Publicity, which did not require a review nor affect it in any way.

Other Books in the Series

A Son's Vow (The Charmed Amish Life #1) A Daughter's Dream (The Charmed Amish Life #2)

About the Author


Shelley Shepard Gray is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time HOLT Medallion winner. She lives in southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town's bike trail.


Author Giveaway


Enter to win a book pack (a copy of A Sister’s Wish and a copy of An Amish Family Christmas) from Shelley. Five winners will be chosen! Click the image aboveto enter to win. The winners will be announced November 7th on Shelley’s blog!


Do you read Amish fiction? I've only read a few and it's been hit and miss. Do you have any favorites?

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