Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Believer

by Ann Gabhart
Baker Publishing

Elizabeth is the oldest of three children and in charge of her younger brother and sister after their father dies. They have no money, family, or place to go. Elizabeth remembers her father tell her about the Shaker community not far from them and how peaceful it was there and that they take in orphans. With their landlord's coming advances toward Elizabeth, they must leave quickly. With hope and determination they begin their journey to the Shakers where they hope to find help.
Ethan was just a boy when he came to the Shaker community. He became a believer just a short time after he became of age. He wholeheartedly believes in Shaker ways, but when Elizabeth and her siblings come to the Shaker community he starts to doubt. Shakers do not believe in romantic love or matrimony;they believe that it is a sin. However, Ethan feels this pull towards Elizabeth.
Within the community there are those that want Elizabeth and her out of control sister to leave the village, but there are those that take Elizabeth under their wings and encourage her to follow the Shaker path.
Elizabeth finds herself thinking of Ethan. When her old landlord comes to take her away into forced marriage will she go? Can Elizabeth become a Shaker and leave her worldly ways behind even though her sister is struggling? Will Ethan leave the life he knows to be with Elizabeth? Well, you will have to read The Believer to find out!
I enjoyed this book, although I argued with the Shaker's in their beliefs. I really did not know much about the Shakers before I read this book. I found it interesting. Ann Gabhart adds intrigue and twists and turns in her writing which I found to be refreshing.

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