The Promise Box (Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors Series #2)

( 17 )

Overview

Every year, young Amish men descend on the cozy little town of West Kootenai, Montana, arriving in the spring to live there for six months and receive “resident” status for the hunting season in the fall. They arrive as bachelors, but go home with brides!
In The Promise Box, the second book of best-selling author Tricia Goyer’s Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series, Lydia Wyse, a book editor from Seattle who grew up Amish, returns to the small community of West Kootenai to ...
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The Promise Box (Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors Series #2)

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Overview

Every year, young Amish men descend on the cozy little town of West Kootenai, Montana, arriving in the spring to live there for six months and receive “resident” status for the hunting season in the fall. They arrive as bachelors, but go home with brides!
In The Promise Box, the second book of best-selling author Tricia Goyer’s Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series, Lydia Wyse, a book editor from Seattle who grew up Amish, returns to the small community of West Kootenai to give comfort to her father after her mother’s death. She is drawn back to the familiar Amish ways after finding her mother’s most precious possession, a Promise Box of prayers and scripture. What her publisher sees, though, is an opportunity for a sensational “tell-all” book about the Amish.
Lydia soon finds herself falling in love with Amish bachelor Gideon Hooley. She wants nothing more than to forget her past and look forward to a future as an Amish bride. But will the pain of her childhood---and her potential betrayal of her community---keep her from committing her whole heart?
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Lydia Wise grew up Amish, but is now a book editor in Seattle. She is called back home to Montana to help her father after her mother's death. There she discovers her mother's box filled with notes about prayer and scripture. While the find propels Lydia to think about the community she left behind, her boss thinks the box's contents would make for a great tell-all book on the Amish. Adding to her dilemma, Lydia finds herself falling in love with Gideon Hooley, who has traveled to West Kootenai for the hunting season. Will her recent past ruin her hopes for the future? VERDICT Two-time Carol Award winner Goyer continues her Western-flavored Amish romances (after The Memory Jar) with this lively outing, which features interesting characters and plot twists. Fans of Vannetta Chapman's Amish romances will find much pleasure in this series.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Tricia Goyer is the author of 35 books, including the Big Sky and Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors Amish series. She has won ACFW’s Carol Award twice, and is a Christy Award and Gold Medallion Award finalist. Tricia is currently writing three more Amish stories and One Year of Amish Peace. Tricia’s Amish novels have made the ECPA and USA Today Bestsellers list. Tricia and her husband, John, live in Little Rock, Arkansas, where John works for FamilyLife. They have four children and are currently in the process of adopting two more. You can find out more about Tricia at www.triciagoyer.com or www.notquiteamishliving.com.
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Read an Excerpt

The Promise Box

novel


By Tricia Goyer

ZONDERVAN

Copyright © 2013Tricia Goyer
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-310-33512-2


Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Lydia Wyse shook rain from her red curls, wishing she could as easily shake memories of the last time she'd seen Mem's lowered kapp and bowed head, praying for her daughter's return. Return not only to West Kootenai, Montana, but to the Amish. Lydia was returning all right, but not in the way Mem had wished. Tomorrow was Mem's funeral, and during the nine hours of driving—from Seattle to Montana—each minute had brought her closer to home. To heartache.

Lydia had stopped for gas in Eureka, about an hour from her parents' house, and rain now drenched her long curls. Soaked, standing in line to pay, she spotted a few Amish women climbing from a white van and hurrying into the grocery store attached to the gas station. Seeing them, a twinge of familiarity—of longing—filled her heart, but she stuffed the emotions down.

"Are those Amish from West Kootenai?" she asked the gas station attendant who took her cash.

He shrugged. "Don't know. Just Amish. Not really sure where they're from."

"Just Amish."

She walked out of the gas station and got back on the road, thinking about the phrase. All her life she'd wanted to be anything but "just Amish." Even when she wore the same type of dress, the same type of kapp as the other girls, she'd felt different. When she was sixteen, she'd discovered why.

The rain stopped its patter on the windshield. Lydia cracked the window, letting the cool, pine-scented breeze filter in, spreading a spray of curls across her cheek. She pressed harder against the gas pedal, wishing she could leave the memories behind. But she could never outrun the dark clouds of her past, no matter how hard she tried.

Picking up speed, her yellow Volkswagen Beetle snaked along the narrow country road. As she grew closer to West Kootenai, tall mountain peaks pierced the thinning clouds, rays of sunlight splitting the firmament.

Her mother's death hadn't come as a surprise. What had surprised her was the faint excitement at seeing those women in their kapps and Plain dress. How could being raised Amish seem so familiar, yet foreign? Painful.

She'd never be "just Amish." Mem, her adoptive mother, had finally disclosed that when she'd turned sixteen. Lydia should never have been born. How horrible that her birthmother had been traumatized twice—first by her conception and second from her birth. Since knowing the truth, Lydia had been running, searching for who she was apart from the Amish community. After all, her birth father was anything but Amish.

Running until now. Her mother's funeral had forced her to return. Return to her parents' home. Return to the quiet Amish community where her parents had found healing after Lydia walked away from their lifestyle and beliefs.

Alongside the road, black-and-white cows dotted a field, bright green from summer sun and rain. A few lifted their heads when she passed, as if surprised by the sight of her red hair through the window.

Rain always gave her a fuzzy silhouette. With one hand Lydia held a death grip on the steering wheel and with the other she pushed the mass of curls back from her face for the hundredth time that day, wishing she'd had enough foresight to grab a hair band. That had been the only good thing about wearing a kapp during her growing-up years. She could pin her hair up with a dozen pins, tuck it under the starched white head covering, and forget about it.

A kapp. One thing that wasn't so bad about being Amish. That and the fact she'd had plenty of time to daydream stories as she mucked stalls, hung clothes on the line, and stitched perfect designs on dishcloths.

If only life was so simple. She'd told herself she wouldn't look back—and she rarely did. But now she had no choice. Like a hook caught into her heart, the truth of who she was, how she'd been raised, reeled her in.

Truth. She could only run from it for so long.


* * *

Gideon Hooley approached the gelding with easy steps. The horse didn't cast one look, but from his perked ears Blue knew he was not alone in the pasture. The horse's brown coat shimmered in the sunlight, muscles rippling as he took one step forward. Tense. At any moment he could turn, chase Gideon down, and trample him. Gideon had seen it before. But something deep down in his gut told him Blue was different, no matter what others said.

"Untamable" was how Dave Carash described him. The Englisch man blamed it on the fact he'd had to pull the foal after the mother died in labor. "Poor thing was without oxygen and as blue as the Montana sky," Dave had said, and the name had stuck. The problem was the Englisch man worked hard to provide for his family and hadn't given enough time to the temperamental creature.

Gideon had seen it before. Horse owners often had better intentions than time and skill, and sometimes Gideon felt that instead of helping people with horse problems he was actually helping horses with people problems.

He took another step forward. "Beautiful day, isn't it, Blue?" He walked a wide circle to approach Blue straight on. Many horses were nearsighted. Things far off scared them. They needed to see them up close to trust them. But letting anyone come close was hard. Gideon understood.

The horse tossed his head.

Gideon removed his brimmed hat and turned it over in his hands, letting the sun warm the top of his head. Mr. Carash had hired him to train Blue, but today was an introduction of sorts. Gideon hadn't come with a rope or bridle. He'd come with a soft voice and an even softer hand.

"I heard some guys tried to chase you down." Gideon chuckled. "Would have liked to see that." He smiled, eyeing the bay with its long neck; fine, clean throatlatch; and deep, sloping shoulders. The gelding watched him, curious.

Intelligent eyes. With the right training he'll be a fine horse.

"Must be hard when you feel threatened." Gideon's throat tightened even as he said those words, and he glanced to his right and looked at the distant hills. "When yer scared fer your life, I understand. There were things I went through as a kid that scared me too."

His gut cinched, and his mother's words came back to him.

"Out of all the places to visit ... why'd ja want to return to Montana? It's a schrecklich place."

"Scary for a little boy, ja, but I'm a grown man now," he had told her.

"Still ... do you not mind what happened?"

"Getting lost, being scared, ja. How could I forget?" Even as an adult he still dreamed about that night in the woods alone. And his parents had never let him forget it was his disobedience that had gotten him into so much trouble.

"That's not the only matter." Mem's voice had lowered, and she'd settled into the kitchen chair, preparing to launch into a story.

His dat strode in with quickened steps, startling them both. "Leave it no mind, Lovina. It wonders me why you need to bring it up."

"Gideon needs to know the truth at some time," she mumbled under her breath.

"Not that truth." The words fell from Dat's lips like horseshoes from a hook. Flat. Hard.

From the look in Dat's eyes that day, Gideon had known he wouldn't get his father to speak a word of it. Mem either. Fine. He didn't need to hear their story. Something had happened in West Kootenai, Montana—more than just getting lost on the mountain when he was four. No one spoke of it, but the hidden truth had haunted his growing-up years.

Gideon glanced at the skittish horse again. Sympathy caused
(Continues...)


Excerpted from The Promise Box by Tricia Goyer. Copyright © 2013 by Tricia Goyer. Excerpted by permission of ZONDERVAN.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 17 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 17 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 31, 2013

    Tricia Goyer has an exceptional talent for taking a biblical co


    Tricia Goyer has an exceptional talent for taking a biblical concept and turning it into a beautiful story. Truth – it is something that follows us and often troubles us when we don’t face it. If we expect to be drawn closer to our Heavenly Father, then we must allow the truth to set us free. Open this book and follow Lydia and Gideon through their journey in allowing God to set them free from many emotional pains and hurts by facing the truth about what had brought them to this place in their lives. The Promise Box is a story that touches on so many issues--dealing with the past in order to gain freedom to move forward; looking at adoption through the eyes of the birth mother; adoption as a gift to the childless; facing the guilt we carry even for things over which we have no control; trusting others when it seems they've broken our trust; sharing our feelings with others; and allowing ourselves to love even when we think we are unlovable. Many of us deal with these issues, and I found this book to be a beautiful display of learning to deal with everyday hurts and emotional pain so we in turn can allow God the freedom to finish his work in us.

    As a member of Tricia Goyer’s 2013 Fiction Launch Team, I have been provided a copy of The Promise Box in exchange for my honest review and opinion. No other compensation has been provided.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 30, 2013

    Very Touching Story! Lydia Wyse returns to West Kootenai, Monta

    Very Touching Story!

    Lydia Wyse returns to West Kootenai, Montana for her "mem's" funeral. As a teenager she left her Amish family to discover her true identity. Her "mem" had left her a promise box containing small pieces of paper upon which she had written meaningful verses of scripture, special prayers and promises from God, as well as letters to Lydia. An adoptee, she had numerous unanswered questions about her biological family. Are the answers to her past included in the promise box?




    Gideon Hooley traveled to West Kootenai, Montana, with other Amish bachelors to obtain hunting privileges. Gideon's purpose for the visit is far deeper than merely hunting. Painful questions haunt him, and Gideon needs answers to a mystery that involves being lost in the mountains when he was four years old. His family has ignored his questions, leaving him frustrated and concerned about what might have happened all those years ago. 




    Lydia and Gideon share a special bond, and their relationship blossoms. Lydia commits an indiscretion that could affect all she holds dear. Will the secrets they keep betray their friendship? Will the answers to their questions drive a wedge in their relationship? 




    Tricia Goyer writes an inspiring story of two characters lost in the questions of their past. The characters in this book are richly defined, and so endearing. A blended community of both Amish and Englische is unique, with numerous colorful characters and personalities. The settings are eloquently described, leaving images and portraits that create a familiarity for the reader to ponder. Conflicting developments and issues that develop throughout the plot are unpredictable, leaving the reader challenged. There is a deep spiritual richness throughout this story, validating the writer's personal convictions. The Promise Box is impressive!




    Disclaimer: I received an ARC copy of this book from Zondervan through Litfuse Publicity in return for my honest review. All opinions expressed are mine, and I received no monetary compensation for this review.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 27, 2013

    I enjoyed this book just as much as the first book. Lydia is Eng

    I enjoyed this book just as much as the first book. Lydia is Englisch (after leaving the Amish earlier in her life) and Gideon is Amish but they still find themselves attracted to each other through their past. I like how Tricia can make each of the characters seem so real and make you fall in love with each o them. I found this to be an emotional book which is a good thing as I did not want to put the book down. Each of these books take us on a journey and they affect each of different but there is a good message in each of them that will come out as you read on.  Another thing I liked about this series is the prized possessions that also teach us something, first we had the memory jar and now the promise box, what shall we have next. I highly recommend this book to everyone. 5 Stars

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 27, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Lydia Wyse has returned home to West Kootenai, Montana to atten


    Lydia Wyse has returned home to West Kootenai, Montana to attend her mother's funeral.  She plans to stay for a few weeks with her dad.  Her dad gives her a Promise Box that her mother had left for her, it was full of prayer and promises from the bible that were dear to her mother's heart for her daughter.  Lydia starts feeling changes in her pulling her back to the Amish ways.  She thought she was happy living among the Englisch yet her heart is telling her different.  

    Then there is the handsome Amish man,Gideon Hooley whom she met the first day she returned and knew there was something special about him that made her want to know him better.  Could she take up the Amish way again?  She is definitely feeling God drawing nearer to her leading her back home. 

    I love this series and am so excited there will be seven books in this series. The author gives glimpses of several of the characters I fail in love with from book one and how they melted into book two as they befriended Lydia and Gideon and took a role in guiding them to a fulfilling life with God and their community of Amish and English living and growing together.  The author writes of  many secrets that were holding these two character back from growing with God and showed them the truth and how the truth would set them free.

    I highly recommend this book.

    Disclosure:  I received a free book from Litfuse Publicity Group/Zonderan for review.  I was in no way compensated for this review.  This review is my honest opinion.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 25, 2013

    I love fiction that not only tells a story, but you leave learni

    I love fiction that not only tells a story, but you leave learning something too. I did just that.  




    We walk with Lydia down this spiritual journey. Along the way, we watch her relationship unfold with those she cares for. We watch as she tries returning to the Amish faith in which she was raised in. We witness her journey through her eyes and in the process learn a thing or two as well. Reading Ada Mae's promises, opens your eyes up to a deeper knowing of Him. You find yourself encouraged too!!!




    I won't give anything away. I mean how disappointing would that be?!! So, to find out how it all goes and ends, read the book ;) Trust me when I say this...go out now and buy the book!!! You will not only LOVE it, but you will also learn so much in the process.  I LOVED this book and it'll be one I'll read over and over and over again :) It's also a book that I HIGHLY RECOMMEND to all :)




    Thankful to Tricia Goyer, LitFuse, and Zondervan for the copy to review. I was not required to post a positive review and all opinions are my own :)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 14, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    The truth shall set you free. Lydyia Wyse left the Amish to liv

    The truth shall set you free.

    Lydyia Wyse left the Amish to live in the Englisch world because once she was told the truth about how she was conceived, she just didn't feel like she belonged. She called her parents some and visited them even less but when her mem passes away she returns for her funeral and is soon feeling like this is where she needs to be. She can feel God in her life again, some of that is because of her mem's promise box.
















    Gideon Hooley is a bachelor who has come to Montana to establish residency so he can hunt and when he sees Lydia taking pictures of an Amish home from the road, he runs over and demand she stop immediately. Little does he know that she is taking a picture of her own parents home.
















    Lydia and Gideon both have pasts that are troubling them. Lydia knows what happened in her past but is having a problem dealing with it. Gideon knows what happened to him but is looking for the secret that his parents are keeping from him. They are fast becoming friends but she's Englisch and he's Amish, his family would never approve. He's honest with her but she just can't tell him her true feelings about what she's doing.
















    By the end of the story you may need some tissues, yes, depending on how emotional you get, it can be a tear jerker. I found this book more enjoyable than The Memory Jar but would recommend both to you. Tricia did a wonderful job here, read and enjoy!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 29, 2014

    I have to admit that this was the first Amish Romance novel that

    I have to admit that this was the first Amish Romance novel that I have ever read. At first I was a little skeptical, and didn't really know what to expect. Well, I was pleasantly surprised! This was a wonderfully sweet story. Even though I only know the basics of the Amish lifestyle, it was so well written that I never felt lost or confused. Tricia showed us that even the most faithful Christians can have hard times in life. It is how you deal with those times and the things you learn from your experiences that shape you into the person God has planned. I loved Lydia and Gideon! I loved the way that they gave each other the strength they needed to find closer and peace with their life struggles. I loved all of the people in the community as well. I can't wait to get the other books in this series and get to know the other characters. Over all, I am very glad that I gave this book a chance. I look forward to reading more from Tricia in the future.

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  • Posted December 30, 2013

    I realize that Amish books are all the rage, but as I was tellin

    I realize that Amish books are all the rage, but as I was telling my mother, Tricia Goyer is one of the originals. Anyone can write an Amish book, but I believe it takes someone special to weave a memorable, emotionally involving Amish story that will stick with its readers for long after the book is shut. And Tricia Goyer is the author that does it again and again. I lost count of how many of her books I have read, and I believe I rated each one of them as a solid five. She has the formula for writing an amazing story, and I hope to be reading her stories for years to come.

    This book is one that has the perfect amount of humor, faith, sorrow, and even a bit of mystery. I have to admit that although I could basically guess how the end would go, I was not one hundred percent certain. There was still just enough uncertainty to keep me guessing along the way. This book never comes across as "preachy," but I so appreciate the way she paints this wonderful community. It is clear that these Amish communities care more about a relationship with God than rules and regulations.

    This book is entirely clean--no profanity and no sex. In addition to this, you can count on reading fairly quickly. The author's style is quite enjoyable to read, and you may just find putting down the book is next to impossible. I marveled at the devotion of the Amish people, and it was further intriguing that Lydia came back from Seattle (from the native Washingtonian).

    I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not financially compensated, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.

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  • Posted October 8, 2013

    I loved the rural, country scene on the cover.  It's so gorgeous

    I loved the rural, country scene on the cover.  It's so gorgeous!  Plus, the title font is pretty amazing.
    Description (from Goodreads): Every year, young Amish men descend on the cozy little town of West Kootenai, Montana, arriving in the spring to live there for six months and receive “resident” status for the hunting season in the fall.  They arrive as bachelors, but go home with brides!  In The Promise Box, the second book of best-selling author Tricia Goyer’s Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series, Lydia Wyse, a book editor from Seattle who grew up Amish, returns to the small community of West Kootenai to give comfort to her father after her mother’s death.  She is drawn back to the familiar Amish ways after finding her mother’s most precious possession, a Promise Box of prayers and scripture.  What her publisher sees, though, is an opportunity for a sensational “tell-all” book about the Amish.  Lydia soon finds herself falling in love with Amish bachelor Gideon Hooley.  She wants nothing more than to forget her past and look forward to a future as an Amish bride.  But will the pain of her childhood---and her potential betrayal of her community---keep her from committing her whole heart?
    Language: 0.
    Other objectionable: There are bad circumstances surrounding Lydia's birth (she's adopted), and there is also some flirting and kissing (very clean though).
    Suitable for: Highschoolers and adults would really enjoy this book.
    Pros:  First of all, I have to say that one of my favorite parts of the book was the name of the town where Lydia's parents live.  "West Kootenai".  What an unbelievably awesome name!!  It's so fun to say.  Kootenai.  KOOTENAI.  Okay, to the serious stuff.  I loved Lydia and Gideon's first meeting.  SO cute!  You need to read it.  Also, there is so much backstory for Lydia and Gideon, like Lydia's birth mother and what led to her adoption by her parents, and Gideon had a traumatizing event as a child, too, which he struggles with over the course of the book.  I like that Lydia is an editor, too (one of my dream jobs).
    Cons: Umm...(sits here in front of computer for about five minutes).  I really came across nothing in this book that I didn't like, which is very rare for me. Sorry, I have a somewhat critical nature. :)

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  • Posted September 19, 2013

    Another great Amish read! This is the story of Lydia Wyse. She

    Another great Amish read!

    This is the story of Lydia Wyse. She was raised Amish but has chosen to lead an "Englisch" life in Seattle, WA. The book starts off with the passing of her mom, so she returns home to West Kootenai, Montana.

    Enter Gideon Hooley, one of the "bachelors" that come at least 6 months before hunting season so they can gain residency for the hunt. We also see the mention of many characters from The Memory Jar. Just a note that you do not need to have read The Memory Jar to read The Promise Box. Ok, back to Gideon. When he first appears, he is training a horse named Blue. He is from Bird-in-Hand, Pennsvylvania and has been to West Kootenai before. As a young child. During that trip, he had an experience that has somewhat haunted him his whole life. His parents have not talked to him, so he's hoping to find out the details while in Montana. When he does, it haunts him even more...all the while he is falling for the new Englisch girl in town...

    Lydia has been haunted by her own demons, surrounding her birth. She was adopted by the Wyse's at her birth and left after finding out the truth. The pain was too much. As she returns to help her Dat, the Amish lifestyle and customs come back easily to her. Her boss has planted the idea that the time is ripe for her to write her own book focusing on returning to the Amish community. She isn't so sure...

    Will Gideon get over the details of what happened when he was a child?
    What about his feelings for the Englisch woman?
    Will Lydia really return to the Amish life?
    What about her 'book'?

    For answers to these questions, read The Promise Box BY Tricia Goyer and then come back and let me know what you think of this great read! Of course, I won't leave you without a quote from the book! It's really hard to choose just one, but here goes...as usual, I couldn't bring it down to just one:

    pg 13: "Mem had told her that her life was a gift, that God didn't make mistakes."

    pg 103: "We aren't perfect. God doesn't expect us to be...Faith isn't about having all the answers. It's about taking one step. The first step."

    pg 138: "You can tell when you're on the right track. It's usually uphill."

    Disclosure: As part of the Tricia Goyer 2013 Fiction Launch Team, I did receive a free copy of this book; however I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed here are completely my own!

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  • Posted June 22, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Each of Trish Goyer¿s latest novels I read is better than the la

    Each of Trish Goyer’s latest novels I read is better than the last, and I marvel at how she can do that!  The Promise Box is no exception – it is my favorite so far of her series “Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors.”
    Lydia and Gideon’s story has a sad beginning.  Lydia Wyse, adopted by Amish parents at birth, left that upbringing to enter the English world and became a book editor in Seattle.  She returned home to West Kootenai, Montana upon the death of her mother to care for her dat during the funeral and for an unplanned time afterward.  Gideon Hooley, an Amish bachelor who has come to the community temporarily for the hunting season, which is a popular draw of young Amish bachelors to learn the skills of this sport.  Gideon has ghosts of his own from the past that haunt and puzzle him.  He hopes to find answers in the town of what happened there years before while his family visited and a tragedy involving Gideon occurred of which he has no memory.
    These young folks had an eventful and humorous meeting which kindled Gideon’s mistrust of Lydia’s English appearance and snapping pictures (not Amish approved) of him while he was in a horse training session with Blue, an untempered equestrian beauty.  There were definitely sparks – some of anger, while some were instant attraction between the two.  Gideon did not know who Lydia was, and that she was also taking pictures of her home in the background and familiar scenes to her.
    Ms Goyer’s story is extremely emotional and heart rendering.  Lydia struggles with a decision about returning to the Amish life, being accepted and not shunned by the community, and wanting to clear up the mystery surrounding her adoption.  She yearns to be a writer and considers the notion of writing about her returning to the Amish faith.  She fights temptation from her Seattle editor and friend who encourages her in this respect.  Life is full of unknowns and uncertainties for Lydia and Gideon.  Both young people are caught in the time of their lives when their choices could alter their lives destructively.
    Personally, I can relate to the adoption issue for Lydia because I have three adopted children, now grown.  I cheered and thanked God for Lydia’s mem’s box full of God’s promises and letters to Lydia.  Will Lydia find her way through her mem’s words and confidences?  How about Gideon…can he express his love and possibly marry an Englisher?  Are they the mates God has chosen for each other?  What will happen to dat if Lydia chooses not to stay and care for him?  Will Lydia learn who her birth parents are?  What will Gideon do about finding the answers to the mystery in his life?  Will pain heal? 
    The sub-title for Trish Goyer’s Promise Box might have been The Englisher and the Horse Whisperer.  Trish writes a wonderful story with much depth on each page.  It is realistic for today’s world concerning Amish communities and lifestyle.  Pay close attention to the answers God graces Lydia and Gideon with during their confusion and hunt for reasons to turn their lives completely to Him.  Trish Goyer is a strict master author on God’s interventions and I admire her own faith.  She is indeed an artist at painting God’s word into her writings.
    So, for the answer to all the questions above, you will not hear the answers from me.  You’ll need to get the book on your own and read, read, read.  Oh, don’t forget the tissues while reading.  And….this is only Book Two, so far, and I’m watching for Book Three to see how she could possibly write a better story than The Promise Box!

    Thank you Litfuse for providing a review copy.  Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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  • Posted June 16, 2013

    Tricia Goyer has done it again. In The Promise Box, the second b

    Tricia Goyer has done it again. In The Promise Box, the second book of her Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series, the author is able to take two main characters with self doubts and flaws and endear them to the hearts of readers.

    Both Lydia and Gideon must deal with very painful realities from their pasts. Both realities are events they feel enormous guilt over. They must learn to trust that God has their past, present and future in His hands.

    The characters feel like real people, living real lives and making real decisions that have real consequences. A thoroughly enjoyable book! I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

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  • Posted June 9, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Tricia Goyer in her new book, "The Promise Box" Book T

    Tricia Goyer in her new book, "The Promise Box" Book Two in the Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series published by Zondervan takes us into the life of Lydia Wyse.

    From the back cover: With her heart-and her loyalty-on the line, can she let true love in her life?

    Every year, a number of young Amish men descend on the cozy mountain town of West Kootenai, Montana, arriving in the spring to live there for six months and receive `resident' status for the hunting season in the fall. They arrive as bachelors, but go home with brides!

    In The Promise Box, the second book of best-selling author Tricia Goyer's Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series, Lydia Wyse, a book editor from Seattle who grew up Amish, returns to the small community of West Kootenai to give comfort to her father after her mother's death. She is drawn back to the familiar Amish ways after finding her mother's most precious possession, a Promise Box of prayers and scripture. What her publisher sees, though, is an opportunity for a sensational `tell-all' book about the Amish.

    Lydia soon finds herself falling in love with Amish bachelor Gideon Hooley. She wants nothing more than to forget her past and look forward to a future as an Amish bride. But will the pain of her childhood--and her potential betrayal of her community--keep her from committing her whole heart?

    Tricia Goyer has an attention to details that help draw you into the story as well, of course, as her marvelous characters. Lydia is going home to take care of things now that her mother has died. She is not planning on returning to the faith just visiting to put things in order and then leave. However, she meets Gideon and sparks begin to fly. Now Lydia has to make some choices of what she wants to do with her life; return to Amish or remain English? Lydia and Gideon both have secrets from their pasts that they must deal with if they are ever going to go forward with their lives. Lydia is scarred from learning that she was adopted and Gideon had an experience of being lost in the woods that he doesn't know all that happened. Now they have to bring their wounded souls to God for His healing. Both Lydia and Gideon are presented in such a real manner that you feel as though they are friends of yours and when the book eventually ends you are sorry to see them go. "The Promise Box" is an exciting book with the romance taking top priority as each of them deals with their individual issues. "The Promise Box" deals with themes of forgiveness, healing and restoration as only God can produce. Ms. Goyer has done it again. I liked this book a lot. I am so looking forward to book three in this series.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  • Posted June 3, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    What a wonderful read, the second book in the Seven Brides for S

    What a wonderful read, the second book in the Seven Brides for Seven Brother's series...and equally as good!!
    Pull up a chair and get comfy for a return visit to Kootenai, Montana. We reunite with some old friends, and make new and lasting friendships. Here we celebrate life, and morn death with loving friends and neighbors.
    We meet Lydia Wyse on the road to her parents home, she is now English, and coming home to Wake her Mem. She is working now at editing books, and has left the Amish way of life. The peace she encounters in the valley here thrills her, and she stops to take a few picture....totally not an Amish thing. She has an encounter, and really not a pleasant one with Gideon Hooley. He was patiently trying to win the attention of a horse. A wild fellow named Blue, when they are disturbed by Lydia.
    From this meeting though, a few sparks fly. Will Lydia be able to return to the Amish? Will Gideon be able to let go of the secret that has been haunting him, and move on with his life?
    There is also the ever present feeling that Lydia has about her birth, will she accept what her birth Mem did? She was brought up in a loving Amish home, with parents that adored her. A lot of her questions are answered in her Mem's Promise Box.
    Be ready for a wonderful, heartwarming book, and all of your questions get answered. I loved that the story is followed right to the end! No cliff hangers here, PTL. Enjoy!

    I received this book through Litfuse Publicity Book Tours, and the Tricia Goyer launch team, and was not required to give a positive review.

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  • Posted May 31, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Lydia Wyse left home at 16 and never looked back. She couldn't b

    Lydia Wyse left home at 16 and never looked back. She couldn't bear the thought that she wasn't wanted and was simply given up. It was something she had difficulty coming to terms with. Growing up Amish but learning that she was adopted. Her birth mother gave her up since she was a product of rape and didn't want the reminder to face every day after she was born. To her Amish mother who remained unable to have children, Lydia was a blessing from God. Feeling like she would never have the opportunity to love a child that belong to her, she was more than thrilled to adopt Lydia. In fact to her, Lydia was a promise from God.

    Now called back home for her Amish mother's funeral, Lydia begins to experience more than just home sickness and grief when she arrives home. She feels remorse for all the years she spent away from her Amish mom, hoping to find some answers for where she fit into the world, and now returning to her hometown in West Kootenai in Montana, she wishes she had one more day with her Amish mother to tell her how much she appreciated all her love that she took for granted. She helps her father process his own grief now that he is growing older and no longer has anyone but the Amish community to care for him, he hopes Lydia might find it in her heart to come home to live once again, but he's not about to suggest or pressure her in anyway.

    The one thing Lydia's Amish mother has left behind for her is a small, wooden box handcarved by her father in which she has kept the promises that she believes God has provided since before Lydia was born. It is a legacy of sorts that contains personal notes and letters to Lydia beginning from before she was born until her final days of waiting to see if Lydia would ever some home again. Her heart simply gave out waiting but her love still goes on and is waiting to be discovered as Lydia cherishes this personal time with her mother through her written promises.

    Now if Lydia can find it in her heart to come home to stay once again. Her employer believes that Lydia has it within her to write the next best-seller about what it's like to leave and return to the Amish community and has agreed to provide her with enough time to do just that. While Lydia spends time in prayer considering her options of staying in Seattle or returning to her Amish roots in Montana, a handsome Amish man, Gideon Hooley, who spends his time whispering to wild horses might just be the thing that tames her wild roots after all and bring her home to stay.

    In the latest novel from the Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors Series, Tricia Goyer once more takes readers into the heart of the Amish community in Montana in The Promise Box. In this novel Lydia has to come to terms with both her past in the English and Amish life as well as deciding for herself just what God's purpose is for her in this world. It is a hard place for her to be, and deals with many conflicting emotions between two entirely different lifestyles, but as with all of Tricia Goyer's novels, she will capture you heart and soul.

    I received The Promise Box by Tricia Goyer compliments of Zondervan Publishers and Litfuse Publicity Book Tours for my honest review. I love how Tricia wrote about Lydia's struggles in coming to terms with her Amish lifestyle and her English birth. She just didn't rush in and resolve whatever issues Lydia had in dealing with her adoption and the reasons behind it. I love Gideon Hooley, the Amish Horse Whisper, who lovingly chooses to interact with Lydia even though she has left the Amish community and has now returned. Every single time they were with one another, you could feel the chemistry and sparks flying but Tricia gave just enough turmoil to keep them from falling in love right away. They each has pasts to deal with before they could contemplate dealing with an unknown future with one another and that's why I'd rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars in my opinion. I can't wait to begin creating my own Promise Box. I received no monetary compensation for a favorable review and can't wait for the next book in the series. Even though this novel is part of a larger series, you can pick this one up and read it as a stand alone. The first book in the series is The Memory Jar.

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    Posted November 29, 2013

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    Posted January 3, 2014

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