cover image The Proposal Plot

The Proposal Plot

Kathleen Fuller. Zondervan, $16.99 trade paper (320p) ISBN 978-0-84071-307-0

Fuller follows up The Courtship Plan with a spirited enemies-to-lovers Amish romance featuring a jaded butcher and a headstrong grocer. After being dumped by one paramour and catching a second with another man, Nelson Bontranger swears off love and moves to the Amish community in Marigold, Ohio, where he plans to open a butcher shop. Unfortunately, the grocery store next door is run by Ella Yoder, “one of the pushiest females he’d ever met.” When sparks fly between Ella’s younger sister Junia and Nelson’s nephew Malachi, they’re forced to chaperone the young lovers on dates. Ella and Nelson squabble as deeper tensions build between the sisters—ostensibly about the grocery store, though the real issue stems from resentments that developed after their mother’s death—leading to a massive blowout. Ella realizes she needs to work on her anger, though God never seems to answer her prayers for patience. As she works to turn over a new leaf, Nelson ignores his growing feelings and resolves to keep her at a distance. God may have other plans, however; when Malachi and Junia’s relationship hits a speed bump, Nelson and Ella must work to bring them back together. The sisters’ relationship serves as the novel’s emotional through line, keeping readers invested in the romantic foibles, clashes, and make-ups. It’s an irresistable charmer. (May)