Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Outsider

by Ann Gabhart

Revell Publishers

Since she can remember, Gabrielle Hope has had the unique ability to see visions that warn of things to come. So when she and her mother, Martha join the Shaker community on Harmony Hill in 1807, her visions are embraced as a gift from Mother Ann. But when her gift enables her to see an event that comes to pass, a doctor must be brought from the outside world to the one where the Believers strive to be separate in order to save a life. Suddenly, everything Gabrielle knows to be good, pure, and true is in question. Will she be able to turn her back on her brothers and sisters that she has found in the Shakers, or will the pull of the world tear her from the peace and celibacy she has promised to live?

This was quite the contradiction in a novel; a Shaker romance? Oh, but it is. In this unique, strange world the members of the community take a vow of celibacy, which clearly means that no children are ever born into the faith. Living a simple life of peace and harmony, using their hands for work, and giving their hearts to God is the foundation of the way they live. Despite the strangeness of these "shaking Quakers", Gabhart weaves a story unlike any other. You will be captivated by every emotion and situation the characters find themselves in, and spellbound by every word as I was. I highly recommend you buy the whole series, because having to wait for the next book is going to be impossible.

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