Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Joyful (Return to Sugarcreek #3) by Shelley Shepard Gray

A young Amish couple gets a second chance at love in New York Times bestselling author Shelley Shepard Gray’s final book in her Return to Sugarcreek series.
Randall Beiler is doing his best to put his family and the farm’s needs first, even forsaking love. But though he tries, Randall knows he needs help caring for his younger siblings and keeping the house together.
When his brother offers pretty Elizabeth Nolt a job taking care of the house and cooking for the family, Randall is furious—and guilty about the way he once broke Elizabeth’s heart. But when he learns that Elizabeth and her grandmother are struggling to make ends meet, he knows the offer, no matter how painful, is the right thing for everyone.
Elizabeth wants to refuse—to stay far away from the man who hurt her—but she needs the money. Though she vows to protect her heart, spending time in the Beiler household makes Elizabeth realize that, while she’s older and wiser, her love for Randall still burns strong.
Randal, too, seems to want something more. But does he want Elizabeth because he truly loves her—or because he needs a housekeeper? If Randall sincerely wants something more, he must find a way to show Elizabeth—or risk losing his chance at love forever.
Joyful includes a P.S. section with a letter from the author, discussion questions, and a teaser from her next book.

About The Author

Shelley Shepard Gray lives in southern Ohio with my husband, two teenagers, and two dogs. My days are filled with busy activities like most any other mom and housewife. But I also love to write books.

Each morning, after my kids go off to school, I sit at my desk, look out my window, and dream of other places. The hours fly by as I make up people and places and drink way too much coffee.

Writing for Avon Inspire has truly been a dream come true. Being able to spend my days in my make-believe world of the Brenneman Bed and Breakfast is a true blessing. I have enjoyed getting to know more about the Amish culture and tapping into my faith as I show each character’s progression toward a personal relationship with our Lord.

Before becoming a full time writer, I taught elementary school in Texas, Arizona, and Colorado. A job transfer to Ohio led my husband to encourage me to finally give writing a try. After all, I had notebooks full of made up stories.

I’ll never forget that first book I typed in our unfinished basement. It was exciting to make up a story, but also very scary. I was also so embarrassed, sure someone would come out of the woodwork and point out that I wasn’t a ‘real’ writer. But I persevered, and sold my third manuscript.

Things have changed a bit. Now I have a real office of my own. (think old guest bedroom!) My walls are painted pink, and more than a couple of book covers decorate my walls. But my days are still the same. I wake up, dream about other people, and do my best to type out stories.

My Review: 

I just finished the third book in Joyful: Return to Sugarcreek, Book Three, I loved the book, but didn’t want the series to end.
This is the story of Elizabeth Nolt and Randall Beiler, and how he breaks her heart. I felt he was really tactless in how he handled the breakup. He sure didn’t seem to have his head screwed on right, as he wasn’t at all thinking, especially seeing what his other members had done previously.
We also have Judith and Ben, who are still caring for little James, and growing in their love for him. Will their hearts be broken, will Kendra change her mind and let her sister’s raise her baby.
Then there is Pippa who is enjoying managing the restaurant, but after her divorce, skeptical about having a relationship with Bud. Can she overcome her disappointments and begin to accept Bud’s attention?
Through all of these relationships you see people struggling with using their own will and not listening to God. When they begin to yield to God, things don’t always happen the way they want, but it is the way it should be.
How I enjoyed this great read, and will miss these people that I have come to love, and be involved in their lives. Made me want to move to Sugarcreek, and in particular live among the Amish. I can’t wait for the new series to start! Thank you Shelly Shephard Gray!

I received this book through Edelwiss and the Publisher Harper Collins, and was not required to give a positive review.

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