A Son's Vow (Charmed Amish Life Series #1)

A Son's Vow (Charmed Amish Life Series #1)

by Shelley Shepard Gray

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Shelley Shepard Gray’s first book in her Charmed Amish Life series is set in the quaint Amish village of Charm, Ohio, and tells the stories of the Kinsinger siblings who are each struggling to find both forgiveness and love in the face of tragedy.

Three months ago, everything changed for Darla Kurtz and her family. Darla’s father was responsible for a terrible fire at Charm’s lumber mill which killed five Amish men. And though he, too, lost his life, the town of Charm hasn’t looked at her family the same since. Even Lukas Kinsinger—with whom Darla used to have a close friendship.

Now her brother’s anger at the town is spilling over onto Darla, and she has the bruises to prove it. The accident already cost five lives, but if something doesn’t change soon, Darla fears it will cost her—and her family—even more.

Lukas Kinsinger wants to mourn the loss of his father, but he can hardly find the time to breathe. Suddenly the head of his father’s lumber mill and responsible for taking care of his three siblings, he’s feeling the pressure. He has also never felt more alone—especially with the new tension between he and Darla. But when he learns of her troubles at home, Lukas knows he can’t simply stand by and watch. Someone has to help her before another tragedy occurs.

As Lukas and Darla attempt to repair their families, they discover something deeper than friendship growing between them. But will Lukas and Darla’s love be accepted after so much loss? Or will the pain of the past overcome any chance of future happiness?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062337801
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 01/26/2016
Series: Charmed Amish Life Series , #1
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 101,497
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Shelley Shepard Gray is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time HOLT Medallion winner. She lives in southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town’s bike trail.

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A Son's Vow 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 31 reviews.
Christa4 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading A Son’s Vow, the first book in the Charmed Amish Life by Shelley Shepard Gray. This series is based in Charm, Ohio, a town I would love to visit someday. Five Amish men died in a tragic fire that happened at the local lumber mill in Charm. Everyone seems to put all the blame on Darla Kurtz’ father who also died in the accident. Darla’s brother is having trouble controlling his anger and is tired of everyone blaming his father. Lukas Kinsinger, Darla’s friend and son of the man who owned the mill, steps in to try to help Darla’s brother control his anger before it is too late. With friction building on both sides, will Lukas and Darla be able to keep their long-lasting friendship intact? I highly recommend checking this book out. Shelley Shepard Gray has written a beautiful story, one that you will reread over and over again.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed reading this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really predictable, very little about Amish life or the Amish religion. More like a Harlequin romance. Obvious about halfway through how it would end. Okay for an easy, simple read, I suppose.
ConR More than 1 year ago
I am a fan of Shelley's writing. I don't know if this fictional story is typical of what any group of Amish people would do. But it is a wonderful story of forgiveness and mercy, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There are great lessons in here for me and I feel for many Christians. Forgiveness has been a theme in my life lately. I appreciate the message of this book.
ObsessedwithBooks More than 1 year ago
This is the first book that I've read by Shelley Shepard Gray and it won't be my last! She brings a freshness to the Amish fiction world that you don't always find in other Amish-related books. Nothing makes me happier than authors who don't create perfect characters that never make mistakes; hence why I feel she's an innovation to the genre. She's not afraid to let her characters show emotion - such as the anger Aaron carried around with him and unfortunately took out on Darla. There was more than once when I wanted to reach in and thump Aaron on the head for the way he treated not only Darla, but Hannah (who lost her fiance in the fire), and the Kinsinger family as well. Darla and Lukas were caught between a rock and a hard place with their families fighting; Lukas's siblings blamed Aaron and Darla's father, while Aaron tried to do whatever he could to prove his father's innocence and blamed the Kinsinger family. I cheered Darla on throughout the book as she found her backbone and not only stood up to the town bully, but she stood up against her brother and kept seeing Lukas anyway. It was nice to see how their bond strengthened as the book moved along at a good pace. Overall I really enjoyed this book and can't wait to see what happens with Hannah and Rob, a secondary story that was easy to follow along with Lukas and Darla's storyline. Please note that I received a review copy in exchange for my honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Author Shelley Sheppard Grey has created another series. Set in Charm Ohio and masterfully written. In the 1st book of.her new series families struggle to deal with a tragic accident which takes five lives. Lukas and Darla are childhood friends. Both lost their fathers in the accident. As they struggle to reconnect you can't help.but cheer them on. In this 1st book she introduces us to not only Lukas & Darla's families but too other families in this small town of Charm. You don't feel overwhemed by the additional people. As you sometimes will with other authors. Ms Grey weaves the twist and turns of all the families seamlessly. I have already Pre-Ordered books 2 & 3 of this series. Can't wait to catch up with the people of Charm Ohio.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wilani More than 1 year ago
Wow! a powerful book by Shelley Shephard Gray. This is the first book in her new series taking place in Charm, Ohio. It is not your typical Amish book. In this book, anger and abuse because of the anger takes place. The Amish are not immune to these kind of problems, but they do work together to solve them. I love the way Shelley handled this topic. It is well written and I fell in love with the characters. I can not wait to read the next book in the series when it comes out
faithsnana More than 1 year ago
A tragedy took place in the peaceful town of Charm, Ohio. There was a terrible fire at Kinsinger Lumber Mill that claimed the lives of five Amish men. Among them were Stephen Kinsinger, owner of the mill, and John Kurtz. Lukas Kinsinger and Darletta (Darla) Kurtz had been friends since childhood often visiting each other’s homes. This accident put a strain not only on the friendship between these two and their families but members of the community as well. One woman who lost her son blamed John Kurtz for starting the fire. She took her anger out on Darla every time she saw her. Darla’s brother Aaron claimed the mill was neglectful when it came to safety. There were seven Kurtz children and, not only had their father died, their mother had left them. Darla did her best to keep the family going. Aaron grew bitter and took his anger out on his siblings, mostly Darla since she was the oldest. Shelley Shepard Gray tells a story of loss, grief, anger, love and forgiveness in this book. Thank you Shelley for another great read!
beckymmoe More than 1 year ago
SUCH a sweet romance--it also dealt with some very serious issues: grief, anger, abuse, forgiveness, and starting over--it did so beautifully, and I found myself tearing up so many times as I neared the end of the novel. I really liked Darla's character. At the beginning of the story, she's still feeling overwhelmed with the turn her life has taken, and she seems to just stand back and let people dump on her--her brother Aaron, her neighbor Mary--but by the novel's end, she's sticking up for herself and letting others know she's not anyone's doormat. Though she takes some strength from Lukas, she doesn't allow him to fight all her battles for her. I also appreciated that she wasn't willing to marry just for safety or convenience--she held out for love, as every good heroine should. Lukas could be a bit overbearing at times, but at heart he was a worthy hero. He did what he did from a place of love, and I liked that he was the first one to try and re-establish his lifelong friendship with Darla. (Even though it took him long enough to figure out that he really wanted something more from her--but that's why God gave him sisters, obviously!) I'm absolutely loving the people of Charm, and can't wait for more of the series to come out! (Please say Hannah's going to have a book--she's one of my favorites!) Rating: 4 stars / B+ I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
TobiForgetHousework More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BookReviewerNicole More than 1 year ago
*My Thoughts* This book was fabulous! I loved Shelley's Brides of Pinecraft Series, and in my oppinion, this series is going to be even better! Every time Darla had to defend herself and her family to the town, I physically ached. I understand on a very miniscule level what it is like to be rejected, but nothing like that. However, Shelley has a way of showing everyone elses true feelings so as not to make enemies out of the other characters, but eventually, friends. Her writing is superb! I could see the tension and attraction on the part of Lukas and Darla but it didn't overtake the line of forgiveness and grace in the story. This was so much more then a romance story. Shelley really did enrapture me with the story each person had and the heartache and healing they all shared. A beautiful story, inside and out, this series will be another great success if Shelley continues this trend! ____________________________________________________ *My overall thoughts* A completely beautiful Amish romance that is so much more! Woven with faith, healing, forgiveness, and love, A Son's Vow is a much welcomed addition to my shelves! _______________________________________________________ *My Rating* I give A Son's Vow by Shelley Shepard Gray... 5 stars!! _______________________________________________ *Audience* Romance lovers? If you love these authors, you'll love Shelley too: Wanda Brunnstetter, Jennifer Beckstrand, Linda Byler, and Suzanne Woods Fischer! *I received this book from the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review, which I have given. All thoughts were my own and I was not compensated in any other way.
mymissdaisy More than 1 year ago
Book One of The Charmed Amish Life a series taking place in Charm, Ohio a fictional little town. The book is complete with a fun little map in the front. I caught myself looking over the map as the story progressed. Book One is the story of a romance between Darla and Lukas. They've known each other all their lives growing up as best friends but when a tragedy strikes the town they drift apart. The author wove a sweet little romance together with the drama of domestic violence. This wasn't a story that I felt 'I knew what was going to happen'. In fact I was pleased and surprised. I had it all figured out based on the title and boy was I wrong. Isn't that what makes a good story? I thoroughly enjoyed this installment and I look forward to the opportunity to read more. I want to know what happens with the sub characters like Hannah that worked as a nanny for an 'English' couple. And the dog Rose that lived in the neighborhood where Hannah worked. I look forward to the installment that tells Hannah's story! On the negative side. Yep there is one. It's personal but I still want to include it. Get it said and be done with. Personally I thought the inclusion of the Amish words was annoying. Whew I said it. I might be the only one that feels this way. But I personally didn't think it added to the story or to the realization. I haven't been around the Amish and I might be totally off here. But I think one word here and there was just annoying. Personal opinion. One more negative for me. And it's not really negative exactly . . . There was one point in the story. A little mystery that was hinted at but didn't get solved and isn't really mention as if it will be solved in follow up stories. I don't want to give the storyline away. But I'm just wishin' to find out what happened! All in all. This was a great book. I started it couldn't put it down. To me that's a good read. So here's my 4 stars for A Son's Vow.
cscott9 More than 1 year ago
A Son’s Vow is the first book in Ms. Gray’s new series, The Charmed Amish Life, and takes place in Charm, Ohio. Heartache and tragedy takes place in everyone’s life and how you learn to overcome all comes down to where do you put your hope and trust. When tragedy strikes both the Kurtz family and the Kinsinger family and a friendship ends, what can be done to help both families overcome. Darla Kurtz’s father is responsible for the fire that took the life five men, including himself and Darla is feeling the anger her brother has for the town. Lukas Kinsinger used to be best friends with Darla until his father was one of the Amish men killed in the fire and now he has to run his father’s lumber mill and he is also responsible for his three siblings. Lukas decides to do what is right and fights for Darla, he knows he has to help her. While he helps her will he be able to put aside everything that has happened or will he walk away from her again? I loved the story of Lukas and Darla and while I was reading A Son’s Vow I came to realize how heartache and tragedy can cause us to turn away from everything we know that is true. God is here for us and so is others. I highly recommend A Son’s Vow to all Amish Fiction lovers. This is another great book by Ms. Gray!! You will definitely not want to miss this one.. Thank you to the Author for providing me a copy of this book for my personal and honest review. All opinions expressed here are my own.
busymomoftwo More than 1 year ago
A complimentary review copy was provided to me. A Son's Vow is the first in a new series called The Charmed Amish Life, conveniently set in the community of Charm. Shelley Shepard Gray has a great knack of writing a book about the Amish with a plot that transcends the setting and the faith of the characters. In this story, several characters in town were recently impacted by a deadly fire at the local mill that killed five Amish men. Each of the characters that were impacted were dealing with the grief in their own way, and not all in the healthiest of ways. As the story unfolds, they discover that pulling together after that devastating event that drove them apart will help them all heal. She writes such a captivating set of characters and as you join them on their journey of healing, it is hard to not feel a connection with the characters. The one thing that kept me guessing was the vow - I had expected it to be an early revelation in the book, but the nature of the vow was not revealed until much later in the book (almost at the end). I don't think it hurt the story, but it did leave me wondering if I had missed something. I look forward to the next book in this series, as I know it will likely be about some of the other shadow characters in this story and that it will allow me to follow the progress of the stories of those characters that I came to love in this story.
SweetPeanutsMom More than 1 year ago
This is where I find that Shelley shines. Her Amish are not perfect. They have the same problems that you can see anywhere in any community. This book deals with abuse in a few forms, verbal and physical, and also grief, but don't worry Shelley handles it with grace. I enjoyed this storyline and the new cast of characters.
LovenGod More than 1 year ago
With forgiveness as it's theme, A Son's Vow is a book that delves deep into the grief of an entire community after a fire at a local lumber mill takes the lives of five Amish men. While forgiveness was the basis and the theme of the story, there are several side stories I would like to mention, and comment on. One was the relationship between Lukas and Darla, it was volatile and often he seemed too rough for my taste. Also, the unforgiveness of the community baffled me a bit. I realize that the Amish are like any other people, and have to work through their issues also, but since the advent and increasing popularity of Amish stories, we have seen that their custom is to forgive. So the unforgiveness did stump me a bit. This was not my favorite of Shelley's books, but I do look forward to seeing what the next book of the series brings. 4 stars from this reviewer. This book was provided for review purposes only, no payment was received for this review.
thall5 More than 1 year ago
A Son's Vow is the first book in The Charmed Life series by Shelley Shepard Gray. This engaging story caught me right from the first few pages. It is set in the town of Charm, Ohio, where a tragic incident had happened abou 3 months before. Five families were struck by the grief of losing a family member and now they must deal with how to cope with that grief and how to move on with their lives. Among these there is Darla Kurtz , who is now in the position of trying to take care of and provide for her siblings along with her brother Aaron. While dealing with her grief and trying to put one foot infront of the other just to make it from day to day, she is blamed by people in her community's for her father's part in the accident. One person in particular seeks her out every day on her job just to inflict more pain. She has no one to turn to since her brother Aaron has become eat up with hate and anger over the loss of their father, and her life long friend and confidant Lukas has also drifted away as a result of grief and uncertain feelings in his own life and family after the death of his father from the same tragedy. As if grief, dealing with hatred from people in the community, and responsibility for her family are not enough, Darlanow has to deal with her brother Aaron and his anger that has turned into abuse that he is now inflicting on her. She fears for herself and her siblings as her brothers' anger is spiraling out of control. Then, one day Lukas stops by the post office where she work so. Can he help protect her? Will she let him back into her life after feeling so betrayed? Aaron need some hel, but who can help him before he hurts someone else? Will their faith and love be enough to bring them through and heal their homes and community? I really enjoyed this book! Recommend to any Amish fiction fan. You will not be disappointed. I received a complimentary copy of this book for honest review.
MeezCarrie More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars One of the first things that struck me about A Son’s Vow was how it addresses topics that aren’t usually explored in Amish fiction. Topics such as unforgiveness, abuse, bitterness, grief, depression. A refreshing reminder of why I love Shelley Shepard Gray’s Amish novels. It’s not so much the case now (thankfully), but when I first tried Amish fiction, all the characters and plots seemed encased in an almost utopian bubble. I didn’t care for it. When I discovered Shelley Shepard Gray, she gave me a new appreciation for the genre. (I have since found several other Amish fiction authors I like as well for these same reasons.) Her characters are real and honest and sometimes raw, but they are also sweet and quirky and sometimes flirty. And no matter what the situation, grace coats every word. Lukas and Darla have so much history behind their friendship – and now so much emotion. Emotion that could – and does – strain the relationship but which also has the potential to make it all the sweeter. I loved watching them interact. Lukas’ protective instincts (swoon!). Darla’s torn loyalties. The moments when they put aside the recent past in favor of the distant (swoon! again!). And then there’s Hannah… whose brewing and complicated relationship I hope to see more of in the series. But beyond all (quite enjoyable) plot points of a romantical nature, the focus on grief and how we each absorb it really sets this book apart from the crowd. Nearly for every character in A Son’s Vow, we are shown a different approach to loss. Some healthy, others not so much. The emphasis on God’s faithfulness, despite our doubt, our anger, our sin, is sure to touch readers no matter what stage of grief they may find themselves. Bottom Line: Shelley Shepard Gray consistently delivers skillfully-written stories of hope and grace, and A Son’s Vow is no exception. Engaging and honest, this is deeper than a romance and so much more than marketing for an Amish utopia. It’s beautiful, it’s creative, it’s witty, and it’s real. In my opinion, it doesn’t get much better :) (I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review.)
Baranski1987 More than 1 year ago
Absolutely amazing! A Son’s Vow, by: Shelley Shepard Gray A Son’s Vow is book one in The Charmed Amish Life by Shelley Shepard Gray. This is not your typical Amish romance book. Shelley has skillfully written a heart touching story. A story that is filled with so many strong emotions that will surly draw you into the story right from the start and not let you go until the very end! There is so much love, pain, heartache, hope, denial, devotion, and faith in this story. Characters that will grab hold of you and take you for the emotional roller coaster of a ride thought this story. This book surely has to be Shelley best Amish fiction that she has ever written! I am so looking forward to reading the next book in this series. Be sure to order your copy of A Son’s Vow by Shelley Shepard Gray today! 5 stars! I received a copy of this book for my honest review.
MitziAB More than 1 year ago
What a blessing it was to step into the town of Charm. Not because it was charming, though it is, and not because everyone and everything is perfect, it was not. And trouble? Yes there was that, too. But the people were human. I saw myself and my friends in the faces of Charm. They had the same goals, dreams, anxieties and distress we all have. Death and rejection change people, as do love and good fortune. As Darla, Luke, their families and friends battle with everyday living, there are glimpses of hope of a brighter day dawning, of lives changing, and of bad habits being dealt with in healthy ways. We glean wisdom from others through the characters, and I was sorry to leave Charm at the end of the story. And we all know that just because the story in a book comes to an end, does not mean the story is over. I look forward excitedly to read more about their lives. Thank you to Amy and Chris at Litfuse Publicity Group, Shelley Shepard Gray and Avon Inspire, an imprint of HarperCollins for the opportunity to read this book. I was given a free book for the purpose of writing a review. A positive critique was not required. The opinions are my own
BrittanyMc More than 1 year ago
A Son’s Vow was a very interesting book to read and I found it hard to set down. I did actually read it in one day! I really liked the main characters, Darla and Lukas. It was difficult to watch as Darla received bad treatment from certain townspeople and also abusive treatment from her brother. I so wanted her to stand up for herself, but could understand her fear of doing so. Lukas was absolutely wonderful! Did he always handle everything correctly? No. Did he know what steps should really be taken to help in Darla’s situation once he was aware of it? Not really. He had some learning to do and he put his all into trying to make things right. I really liked the development of the relationship between these two people. This story is also full of other interesting characters, such as Hannah and Rob. What an interesting side story that was. Of course Darla and Lukas’ siblings all play their own roles in this book. I was very fond of Rebecca and enjoyed her appearances in the story. And then there is Darla’s brother, Aaron. His actions and the hatred that had risen up in him was hard to read about. I wondered how the author would handle him as the story wrapped to a close. I thought she did a good job with it and brought about a satisfactory ending. I’m definitely looking forward to reading more books in this series. I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Nicole-H More than 1 year ago
A Son's Vow is the first book in Shelley Shepard Gray's new Charmed Amish Life series. The story opens three months after a terrible tragedy has rocked the community of Charm, Ohio. A fire at the local lumber mill took the lives of five Amish men, including the fathers of the main characters. Darla Kurtz's father, an employee of the mill, was the man responsible for the fire. Lukas Kinsinger's father was the owner of the mill. Although they have been friends since childhood, this has put a strain in their relationship. Will their friendship survive? Is there a chance that it will develop into something more? As the story progresses, we see how the tragedy has affected others in their community. The emotions that they experience are very real: emotions that are common to people everywhere. Some of them struggle with anger and want to cast blame. Others feel their losses very deeply and struggle along in sorrow. We have the opportunity to see the characters begin to heal and to go on with their lives, even if it is in a way that they had never expected. This story drew me in immediately. I felt as though I really knew the characters, and found myself crying along with them at points in the story. I cheered their successes, and loved every minute of the journey. My only regret is that I have to wait for the next book in the series to come out. If you are a fan of Amish fiction, I would highly recommend A Son's Vow to you. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.