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Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Blessed

The Blessed is the fourth book in Gabhart’s Shaker Book Series and is well researched, as are all of the books in her Shaker series.   Ann lives close to a restored Shaker village in Kentucky and has had the opportunity to see and walk through the same type of village written about in her books.

As I’ve mentioned many times before, I am a HUGE fan of historical fiction because I learn something just about every time I sit down to read.   For example, many people think that the Shakers and the Amish are one in the same.   Shaker communities were much different in that they did not believe in marriage or having children.  They treated each other as “brothers and sisters” and were committed to a life of celibacy.   I didn’t know much about Mother Ann Lee, who eventually became the leader of this group but Ann’s writing spurred me to do my own research and learn more about this woman.

In The Blessed, readers meet Lacey Bishop who is living with the pastor’s family, taking care of his frail wife, Miss Mona and Rachel,the child that was left on their doorstep. Four years after Mona’s passing, Lacey is 20 years old and now the target of vicious gossip, as the ladies in the church congregation speculate what’s going on behind the pastor’s closed doors.

For the sake of propriety, and in order to stay with Rachel, Lacey ends up marrying Preacher Palmer after getting him to agree to separate beds – at least for a time.

Although Lacey has a roof over her head, it comes with a husband she doesn’t love and she finds herself constantly looking over her shoulder hoping the pastor won’t forget his promise. 

Lacey finds herself with another unimaginable change, whenher husband decides to join the local Shaker community.  He gives her the option of making her own choice but Lacey decides to follow him knowing that once they join the Shakers,her sham of a marriage will no longer exist.

This interesting story is full of conflict, heartache,longings and deception and every character plays an important role.  I thought the story flowed very easily and highly recommend to this book to those who enjoy historical fiction.

Ann’s books on the subject of Shakers are not only interesting but they are also informative. For anyone home schooling and studying this time period, I would highly recommend Ann’s books.  They are clean, family friendly and wholesome.

“Available July 2011 at your favorite bookseller from Revell,a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

This book was provided free for review by Revell
Watch The Blessed video

Read the 1st & 2nd Chapters Here

NOTE:  If you are vacationing in the New Gloucester, Maine area and would like to see the only existing Shaker village left, you can click here for more information

Other books about The Shakers

Other books by Ann

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