cover image An Amish Surprise

An Amish Surprise

Shelley Shepard Gray. Gallery, $16 trade paper (320p) ISBN 978-1-982148-45-4

Gray’s lovely second in her Berlin Bookmobile series (A Perfect Amish Romance) sees Sarah Anne Miller helping another family as she volunteers as a traveling librarian delivering books to the Amish community. When Sarah Anne is courted by handsome widower Pete Cannon, she worries that pursuing the romance will dishonor the memory of her late husband, who died of cancer a few years before. Meanwhile, she does her best dealing with the Miller family, who frequent the bookmobile with six rowdy children. The oldest boy, Miles, is a 10-year-old foster child. A young married farmer, Calvin, takes a special interest in the child since he and his wife, Miriam, have been unable to have their own children. Calvin longs to adopt Miles but Miriam is initially against the idea. When Miriam becomes pregnant, she chooses to keep it a secret, because she’s afraid of losing the baby and disappointing Calvin. As Calvin grows closer to Miles, Miriam learns to release her pride, trust in God, and open her heart to the boy. Sarah Anne also realizes that she needs to trust God’s plan instead of her own, with ramification for her relationship with Pete. Gray’s fully realized characters, believable situations, and delicately woven biblical themes make this a standout. Gray’s fans will be thrilled. (May)