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Covenant, The [Paperback]

Beverly Lewis
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Sept. 1 2012 Abram's Daughters (Book 1)
A New Look for The Covenant

Abram's Daughters is the powerful saga of four sisters, their family and community, whose way of life and faith in God are as enduring as their signature horse and buggy. Or so it seems...Book One, The Covenant, unveils the layers of deeply rooted Amish tradition as seen through the eyes of Leah and Sadie Ebersol, the two oldest, courting-age sisters. The Amish community of Gobbler's Knob holds everything Leah Ebersol has ever desired until a pact with her sister Sadie, lured by the outside world, leaves Leah clinging to God's promises.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Inspirational novelist Lewis begins Abram's Daughters, a Lancaster County series about four Amish sisters, in the tradition of her previous novels. It should please her fans, while not offering much in the way of fresh material. It's 1946 in Gobbler's Knob, Pa., and Sadie Ebersol and her sister, Leah, are exploring the joys of "rumschpringe" the period of relaxed rules and running around that Amish teens enjoy prior to their baptism into the church. Tomboy Leah's first love is Jonas Mast, but her father Abram has determined she'll marry Gideon Peachey, whose father's farm adjoins the Ebersols'. Her beautiful sister Sadie's defiance crosses the boundaries when she becomes involved with Englischer Derek Schwartz. Heartache is inevitable. The dialect (perty, redd, Dat, ach, wonderful-gut, jah) is as dense as sugar cream pie, as are the italicized terms. There are further challenges for the reader: multiple points of view and cumbersome Amish definitions make the novel a bumpy read for the uninitiated. The characters are flat and unchanging, and the plot functions mostly as a setup for the series. There are factual errors, as when Ebersol's home garden produce stand features early spring vegetables in the month of August. Several events, including a hidden pregnancy that remains unobserved by the family until almost the eighth month, require enormous suspension of disbelief, and readers will see the key plot developments coming from the earliest pages. However, none of these troubles may deter Lewis's enthusiastic audience. (Sept.) Forecast: With nearly three million novels sold, Lewis is a staple on the CBA bestseller charts. Bethany plans a major marketing push for the new series.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Fans of Lewis's "Heritage of Lancaster County" trilogy will cheer her return to Amish country with this new series. When the teenage daughters of Abram Ebersol begin courting during the summer of 1946, Sadie furtively sees smooth-talking, non-Amish Derry, who impregnates and then abandons her. After keeping her pregnancy hidden from all but her younger sister Leah and Aunt Lizzie, Sadie goes into premature labor, and Derry's father is the doctor called in to help. At the same time, Leah defies her father, who has chosen her future husband, by becoming engaged to Jonas Mast. Meanwhile, younger twin sisters Hannah and Mary Ruth struggle with their own hopes and fears for the future, and a fifth daughter is born to mother Ida. Unfortunately, Lewis's scattershot approach focuses too briefly on too many characters, making it hard for the reader to keep them straight. It's also difficult to be sympathetic to a family who weaves its own web of deception, but Lewis is a master of eliciting empathy for characters caught in troubles of their own making. The Amish community with all of its intricacies is vibrantly drawn (Lewis grew up in Pennsylvania Dutch country), and the tension between it and the encroaching English world is palpable. "Jahe" readers will be impatient for the continuation, even if it won't be "perty." Recommended for all collections.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars simple and sweet with just enough turmoil June 24 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This is the first book by Beverly Lewis I have read. I have to say that once I got started, I just had to keep reading. I enjoyed learning about the Amish culture. I would characterize this book as a cross between "Little Women" and "Fiddler on the Roof" with a dash of "The Scarlet Letter" thrown in. It is simple and sweet with just enough turmoil to make it interesting. One of the things I took away from reading this book is that no matter our religion, race or background, we all share similar emotions (though our trials may vary) while we try to find our way through life. The author is good at developing her characters in such a way that you feel you know them and even though they are all so different, you are rooting for each one. Her style is also such that she leads you along just enough so that you can't wait to see what is going to happen next and which secrets will be revealed. She does leave the first book with somewhat of a cliffhanger so don't read the first if you are not interested in reading the second. Happy Reading!!!!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Decent Beginning to a Series May 11 2004
Format:Hardcover
The Covenant is my first Beverly Lewis novel, and I have to say that I enjoyed it immensely. Set in the Lancaster County, PA "Dutch Country" area, the novel is the first in a series about four Amish sisters - Abram's Daughter's.
The plot focuses mostly on the two eldest daughters, Sadie and Leah. Sadie is a typical innocent young girl, intrigued with the wordly ways that she has been sheltered from, and running wild during her rumsprunger (the time when Amish teens get to do what they want before they commit themselves to an Amish/Anabaptist way of life). Leah, younger than Sadie, has not yet come to the age of rumsprunger, but is much more staid of temperment, and worried terribly over Sadie's running around. While dealing with these worries, Leah is also dealing with the pressure that her father is putting on her to marry Gideon and join the two families farms, when she comes of age. Leah, of course, is in love with someone else.
Beverly Lewis is an immensely sweet and realistic writer. She manages to portray Lancaster County in an attractive, but thankfully not syrupy, manner. Her characters are real people who have passions and worries, but still have floors to sweep and cows to milk. Like us, they must struggle to function *with* their passions and problems, rather than calling a time-out on their lives for a plotline. And like real people, these characters do not go into euphoric swoons, nor have nervous breakdowns. Instead, they laugh, cry, get mad, forgive, love, and pick up the pieces.
The Covenant is steadily paced, but not at all fast. It feels like a leisurely walk down the beach with a good friend. The story provides for satisfying moments, but as the beginning of the series, does not wrap things up in a neat package.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Beverly Lewis at her best! April 20 2004
By jo
Format:Paperback
The Covenant is the first in a series that Beverly Lewis calls her "Abram's Daughters" series. We are introduced to the family in this book, and the the web begins spinning almost instantly! It's a wonderful book and the beginning of a enjoyable series. The history and culture of the Amish are accurately detailed. Great read!
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1.0 out of 5 stars Dismal and Abysmal Sept. 23 2003
Format:Paperback
Preachy and simplistic--like it was written for a 12-year-old. Many of the plot lines drawn out or merely hinted at were left dangling--I guess we're supposed to hold our breath for the sequels. Since the direction the main plot was going in seemed obvious, it's not necessary for anyone to toil through another one of these maudlin, sappy, religious tracts!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Covenant Review Sept. 17 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is a must read if you are interested in the Amish.
This book is wonderful and so hard to put down once you start reading it. I ordered the second book in this series before I finished this one and I can't wait to start the next one. The suspense is killing me! This book is also a great source for learning about the Amish. There is so much to learn about the Amish in this book and you will also learn some Penn. Dutch that they speak. I went to Lancaster County right when I heard about the book and bought the book while on vacation there. The book makes everything I saw there come to life again. Go to Lancaster County if you can and the book will come to life right before your eyes!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book Sept. 9 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I live next door to an Amish Family and although some of the situations in this book would never occur next door, there was also alot in common. I already knew of the singings, etc. I am dying to get the next book. Can't wait.
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Format:Paperback
The Covenant is the tale of Abram and Ida Ebersol two oldest daughters, Sadie and Leah, during their rumschpringe. This is a time when Amish teens are allowed to run wild and free before taking their baptismal vows.
Sadie, the eldest of the Ebersol's four daughters, is making her vows in the fall, and she is not at all sure this is the path she wants. Truth be told she has been sneaking into town asking for trouble. She knows her parents would be shamed if they knew where she had been, but this doesn't seem to bother Sadie in the least. Especially after the night she meets the fancy English boy, Derry. She could not stay away from this boy who whispered sweet nothings in her ear. Sadie at first does not understand the danger that everyone tries to warn her against, but it is not long before Sadie learns first hand what can happen when you are lead astray from God by temptation.
Unlike Sadie, Leah, the second oldest, was not raised to woman's work in the house but to man's work out side with her father. She has always been her father's son since her parents did not have any boys. As Leah watches her sister Sadie going through her rumschpringe, she begins to worry about her sister, but all she seems to get from Sadie these days is indifference. Not knowing what else to do, she starts to look forward to her own upcoming rumschpringe. Her father has it in his sites that she will marry the Smithy's son, but unfortunately Leah has another boy in mind. How can she break the news to her father without breaking his heart?
As Sadie and Leah are both going through their rumschpringe, they both learn that some times you can not stop the fall, but you can be there to help pick up the pieces.
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