Autumn's Promise by Shelley Shepard Gray

I wasn't very impressed with this novel by Shelley Shepard Gray. Perhaps because I missed the first one in the series, maybe not. It seemed to be a stand-alone story. It moved very slowly, the mother of the protagonist (Lilly) seemed to be very insensitive and abrupt during a tight scene when they were discussing the pregnancy of her mom and the loss of her own baby several months earlier. I just lost patience with the story line after that. Too many story lines that didn't tie together until far into the story also made me lose patience. I often read two or three books at a time, but I know they are separate stories. Here we have separate stories in between the same covers. It is disconcerting to say the least about it.

On a good note, the characters do create empathy. Without that, it would be hard to chew this novel.

Although, there were several things the Amish in this story did that literally went against all the research I've done on the Amish (beliefs and practices) so it was hard to let the story flow for trying to reconcile the differences without explanation for the differences. That isn't to say, my research was correct and Gray's was wrong, it is just that they clashed in some important areas. When that happens without explanation then it is a story flow dam and the reader drowns in the flood with no relief of drain-off.

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Autumn's Promise
Avon Inspire (August 3, 2010)


Shelley Shepard Gray


Since 2000, Shelley Sabga has sold twenty-six novels to numerous publishers. She has written a seven book contemporary series for Avalon books. She also published The Love Letter, a western for Avalon. Five Star Expressions published Suddenly, You in February of 2007. This novel is a historical western set in the mountains of Colorado.

Shelley has written nine novels for Harlequin American Romance. Cinderella Christmas, her first novel with them, reached number six on the Waldenbooks Bestseller list. Her second book with them, Simple Gifts won RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice award for best Harlequin American Romance of 2006. The Mommy Bride, was chosen by Romantic Times Magazine as one of their TOP PICKS for May, 2008.

Under the name Shelley Shepard Gray, Shelley writes Amish romances for Harper Collins’ inspirational line, Avon Inspire. HIDDEN and WANTED the first two novels of her ‘Sisters of the Heart’ series, were chosen to be Alternate Selections for the Doubleday/ Literary Guild Book Club. FORGIVEN, book 3, has received glowing reviews. Avon Inspire is releasing four novels by Shelley this year.

Before writing romances, Shelley lived in Texas and Colorado, where she taught school and earned both her bachelors and masters degrees in education. She now lives in southern Ohio and writes full time. Shelley is married, the mother of two teenagers, and is an active member of her church.


Some promises are meant to be broken...

Until Robert Miller met Lilly Allen, his world had been dark. A widower after only two years of marriage, he'd been living in a haze, feeling that, at twenty-four, his life was already over.

But thanks to his friendship with Lilly, he now has new reasons to wake up each day. He knows his connection to her doesn't make sense. She's only nineteen, with a past the whole town talks about. Even more, she's not Amish, like Robert. A marriage between the two of them could never happen.

Lilly's heart is drawn to Robert, not to his faith. No matter how much she admires his quiet strength and dependability, she doesn't think she could ever give up her independence and reliance on the modern world. Is their love doomed before it even begins?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Autumn's Promise, go HERE.

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