CHRISTMAS AT THE AMISH BAKESHOP
GENRE: Inspirational Amish Romance / Christmas
RELEASE DATE: September 28, 2021
As the most joyful holiday draws near, three couples discover the recipe for love includes faith, hope, and the sweetest blessings . . .
A CHRISTMAS CAKE FOR REBECCA
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Shelley Shepard Gray
When carpenter Aden returns to Lancaster after twenty years away, bakeshop owner Rebecca is dismayed to find he’s still as handsome and kind as ever. He broke her heart when he left the community back then. Will a holiday emergency provide a second chance at love, this time forever?
BEST CHRISTMAS PRESENT EVER * USA Today Bestselling AuthorRachel J. Good
When a lonely widower with a sick daughter and a new cake decorator meet at the bakeshop, they discover they were once childhood playmates. But as each of them helps the other care for family, their neighborly kindness inspires a gift that only love could make possible . . .
THE CHRISTMAS CUPCAKE * USA Today Bestselling Author Loree Lough
A builder who never learned to read believes he must hide his fond feelings for a kind schoolteacher. But after they run into each other at the bakeshop, she offers to teach him—and as Christmas approaches, each of them learns a lesson about the great gift of love . . .
Shelley Shepard Gray, Rachel J. Good, and Loree Lough?!? In one book?!? A Christmas collection?!? Well… Nobody had to twist my arm to read Christmas at the Amish Bakeshop, that’s for sure! On the contrary, I jumped at the chance and thoroughly enjoyed it from cover to cover. Though the stories are connected by one bakeshop, each story highlights the respective author’s strengths and unique style and with these three authors you can’t go wrong!
Gray’s A Christmas Cake for Rebecca sets the stage for the collection, revolving around the popular bakeshop’s owner & her penchant for doing the work of five people by herself. Boy, I could relate to Rebecca – her tendency (read: stubbornness) to try & do it all and how that affects her emotional and physical health. I loved her bakery staff & how they would do anything to help Rebecca, if she’ll just let them. And oh yes I loved Aden – and his Christmas cake!! This swoony carpenter is the one who got away, and watching their still-there-after-20-years feelings resurface and deepen as adults (with all their life experiences that have shaped them since they were much younger and in love) was truly a pleasure. Gray’s signature warmth is ever-present, and her ability to create characters you adore is also firmly in place. Be prepared to smile (and crave Christmas cake haha).
In Good’s Best Christmas Present Ever, readers are treated to a heart-tugging story of a very sick little girl, her widower father, and the empathetic young woman who captures both their hearts. This novella gave me all the feels: I ached over Johanna’s illness and Lizzie’s aunt’s dementia; I chuckled at some of Lizzie’s mishaps; I melted over Christian & Lizzie’s shared backstory & their blossoming romance; and the underlying message of kindness and putting others first was especially heartwarming. I loved getting further insight into Rebecca’s own heart, as much of the novella is set in the bakeshop, and I loved even more watching Lizzie flourish there. The author did an excellent job with character development and crafting a layered story despite the shorter word count.
The Christmas Cupcake by Lough introduces us to caring teacher Tessa and local builder Asher. Each of these characters is harboring a rather sensitive (and separate) secret, and I appreciated the way the author handled these topics with grace – as well as how she allowed these layers to naturally peel back as the characters’ friendship (and then romance) grows. This novella was less connected to the other two, and we really only see Rebecca’s bakeshop in passing. But it’s a sweet story on its own merit, and there’s no denying Lough’s talent at creating dimensional characters.
Bottom Line: Three talented authors, three swoony romances, three sets of strong & likable main characters, and a common setting that ties them all together – add in a healthy dose of Christmas and how can you possibly go wrong? Rebecca, Lizzie, and Tessa are heroines who each embody the message of the holiday with their compassionate & gracious hearts, and their respective heroes perfectly complement them. Christmas at the Amish Bakeshop is the perfect collection for long-time fans of Gray, Good & Lough, as well as brand-new-to-them readers!
(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)
My Rating: 4 stars / loved it!
KissingBook Level: 3 / may forget to breathe on occasion
Shelley Shepard Gray is the Holt Medallion Award-winning, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over eighty novels. Her novels have been translated into multiple languages and highlighted in the Philadelphia Enquirer, The Washington Post, Time Magazine, NPR and USA Today. An active member of her church and the mother of two young adults, Shelley lives with her husband in Ohio and writes full time. Please visit her online at ShelleyShepardGray.com.
Rachel J. Good is the USA Today bestselling author of inspirational fiction including the Surprised by Love, the Unexpected Amish Blessings series, the Sisters & Friends series, and the Amish Popcorn Shop Mysteries. She grew up near Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the setting for her Amish romances, and she frequently visits Amish friends, who help to ensure the accuracy of her novels. In addition to her Amish novels, she’s written more than 50 books, including children’s educational books, adult nonfiction, and fiction for children and teens under several pen names. A former teacher and children’s librarian, Good completed her MA from Vermont College while raising five children and is presently completing her thesis in the Hollins University MFA program. A member of RWA, ACFW, ALA, and SCBWI, Good speaks regularly at civic events, schools, libraries, and conferences across the country. Rachel can be found online at RachelJGood.com.
Loree Lough is the USA Today bestselling author of more than 115 books, with nearly nine million copies sold. She and her husband divide their time between Baltimore and the Allegheny Mountains. She loves hearing from her readers, and answers every letter, personally. You can connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and LoreeLough.com.
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What about you? What makes you want to read Christmas at the Amish Bakeshop by Shelley Shepard Gray, Rachel J. Good, and Loree Lough?