Thrill of the Chaste: The Allure of Amish Romance Novels [NOOK Book]

Overview

Browse the inspirational fiction section of your local bookstore, and you will likely find cover after cover depicting virtuous young women cloaked in modest dresses and wearing a pensive or playful expression. They hover innocently above sun-drenched pastures or rustic country lanes, often with a horse-drawn buggy in the background?or the occasional brawny stranger. Romance novels with Amish protagonists, such as the best-selling trailblazer The Shunning by Beverly Lewis, are becoming increasingly popular with a...

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Thrill of the Chaste: The Allure of Amish Romance Novels

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Overview

Browse the inspirational fiction section of your local bookstore, and you will likely find cover after cover depicting virtuous young women cloaked in modest dresses and wearing a pensive or playful expression. They hover innocently above sun-drenched pastures or rustic country lanes, often with a horse-drawn buggy in the background—or the occasional brawny stranger. Romance novels with Amish protagonists, such as the best-selling trailblazer The Shunning by Beverly Lewis, are becoming increasingly popular with a largely evangelical female audience. Thrill of the Chaste is the first book to analyze this growing trend in romance fiction and to place it into the context of contemporary literature, religion, and popular culture.

Valerie Weaver-Zercher combines research and interviews with devoted readers, publishers, and authors to produce a lively and provocative examination of the Amish romance novel. She discusses strategies that literary agents and booksellers use to drive the genre’s popularity. By asking questions about authenticity, cultural appropriation, and commodification, Thrill of the Chaste also considers Amish fiction’s effects on Amish and non-Amish audiences alike.

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Editorial Reviews

Shelf Awareness - Marilyn Dahl

The promise of the cover is borne out by the content: an engaging analysis of 'bonnet rippers' and their audience.

Femonite

Weaver-Zercher’s book is a fascinating read, that raises some questions about this increasingly popular genre, but also tries to add complexity to our understandings of how Amish fiction functions.

Mennonite World Review - Melanie Springer Mock

Thrill of the Chaste is an entertaining read... [Weaver-Zercher's] light, engaging voice makes her ideas accessible. I found myself caught up in her rich, often humorous descriptions... Weaver-Zercher redeems the genre and its readers.

Choice

The unusual subject of Amish romance is treated engagingly in this crossover book... Highly recommended.

Mennonite Quarterly Review

Weaver-Zercher’s book-length exploration is not only a groundbreaking contribution to an area that deserves more study, but also an excellent read, as all-consuming and hard to put down for this scholar of American literature and popular culture as Amish romance novels are for their devoted fans.

Choice

The unusual subject of Amish romance is treated engagingly in this crossover book... Highly recommended.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Valerie Weaver-Zercher is a writer and editor whose work has been published in the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, Mennonite Weekly Review, and elsewhere.

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