Thursday, July 5, 2012
Available July 2012
Jessamine Brady has been in the Shaker Village for half her young life, but in spite of how she loves her sisters there, she struggles to conform to the strict rules. Instead she entertains dreams of the world outside. When Tristan Cooper seems to step out of those dreams to entice her into the forbidden realm beyond the Shaker Village, her life turns upside down.
Will Jessamine be able to survive the storms of the world? Or will she retreat back to the peace of Harmony Hill?
Ann Gabhart is an author I always enjoy reading. She has a way of making history and different cultures come alive. I always find her Shaker books particularly intriguing. I was excited to dive into The Gifted. Jessamime as a character has quite a lot of depth and as a reader I felt her very real struggle. Tristan lacks depth at the beginning but gains it as the story moves along.
For some reason this book wasn't a favorite of mine. There was a lot of Shaker theology in the book and it ended up making me a little uncomfortable. Hearing so much about "Mother Ann" seemed to take away from the story. I am definitely walking away with a much better understanding of the Shaker faith, I'm just not sure that's what I was looking for.
Either way Gabhart is an excellent story teller who will grip you right away. Her characters are real and well developed and the underlying story of Jesus throughout is always beautiful. The way the characters long for something more is so true of how God is always gently wooing his children.
I received this book from Revell Publishing in exchange for my honest and real review.