She never wanted to marry. He hopes to make amends for past wrongs. Can love find a way to heal both of their hearts?
Sadie Schrock swore she would never marry. All of her other Amish friends could court and marry—she was content to manage the family business and eventually take it over when her parents are ready to retire. But all of that changes when a reckless driver kills both of her parents and seriously injures her younger sister. With mounting hospital bills adding to the pile of debt her parents left behind, Sadie is left with no choice: she must marry. And not just any man—the man who saw her at her weakest and walked away.
Aden knows what his brother did to Sadie years ago was inexcusable. And every day since that incident, Aden has lived with the guilt for not intervening sooner. When he is faced with the chance to protect Sadie once again, he can’t let her down—even if it means living with the scorn of the woman he loves for the rest of his life.
Working alongside Aden at the store, Sadie realizes he isn’t the same boy who once betrayed her. Just when Sadie starts to let her guard down and perhaps develop feelings for her new husband, dangerous secrets are revealed. Now everything Sadie has worked so hard to protect is threatened, and she must find a way to save her family—and herself.
A Reluctant Bride is the first book in Kathleen Fuller’s Amish of Birch Creek series, but definitely isn’t the first book I ever read by her. In the past, I read and really enjoyed her two books in her Hearts of Middlefield series—A Man of His Word and An Honest Love—and I also own What the Heart Sees: A Collection of Amish Romances that I really loved as well. Clearly, I was extremely hopeful that I would love this novel since I have enjoyed a few of her books in the past, but I wasn’t a hundred percent sure because I read those books quite a while ago. Once I was not even halfway through this book, I knew I was going to love it even more than any of Kathleen’s other books.
Sadie Schrock faces so much throughout the course of this book! I cannot even imagine what it would be like to be her, but let me just say, I don’t envy her one bit! Well, maybe a little when it comes to Aden, but that’s not really what I’m talking about right now. Anyway… she is one strong cookie! I mean, yeah she still struggles through it all, and she still experiences pain and sorrow and all that, but she is so resilient through it all! She is willing to do whatever it takes to keep her family’s store running and to make it possible to pay for Joanna’s medical bills, and that just goes to show what a wonderful daughter and big sister she is. And what a wonderful wife she has the ability to be.
Aden Troyer is beyond perfect. I’m not going to lie, he does have his flaws just like anyone else, but he is such a sweet guy who just wants what is best for Sadie, and that is just completely adorable. He puts his needs before his own again and again and again, and I cannot help but hope that there are men like him in the world. Even though he faces many of his own demons, he constantly works to help Sadie overcome hers, and that melted me every time. His compassion and love knows no bounds, and that is just one of the many things that made this book completely and utterly fabulous.
I absolutely fell in love with Sadie, Aden, and their story, and I cannot imagine not giving this novel all five bookshelves. Kathleen did and amazing job weaving together all of the elements of this book, and I cannot wait to read the second book in the series, which comes out next month. This novel quickly made its way onto my all-time favorites list, and I highly recommend it as one of the best Amish novels I have ever read. Besides, who can resist a perfect fall-in-love-after-they’re-married, marriage-of-convenience tale? I know I can’t!
To see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.
All credit for the italicized synopsis goes to Kathleen Fuller and Thomas Nelson Publishing.