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Spring's Renewal: Seasons of Sugarcreek, Book Two Paperback – Apr 19 2010

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Spring's Renewal: Seasons of Sugarcreek, Book Two + Autumn's Promise: Seasons of Sugarcreek, Book Three + Winter's Awakening: Seasons of Sugarcreek, Book One
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; 1 edition (April 19 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061852368
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061852367
  • Product Dimensions: 20.2 x 14.2 x 1.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 295 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #233,283 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 34 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Definitely enjoyed this book Aug. 21 2010
By Barbara Koehler - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
This is the first book by Shelley Gray that I've read. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. The characters quickly developed into "people" that I cared about and wanted to follow through the story. The main protagonists were fleshed out with sufficient depth and behaved unpredictably enough that they were credible and interesting. However, some of the more peripheral characters were fairly shallow and predictable.
One of the things I liked best was the calming effect the book had on me the a reader. It held my interest despite a lack of the gratuitous violence, terror and cruelty that so many authors build into their novels. The glue that held this book together for me was the fundamental human values shared by many of the characters -- love of family, respect for the truth, a regard for the needs of others, and a drive to become the best person they could be.
The book is obviously written from a heavily Christian perspective -- afterall, most of the characters are Amish. That particular world view does not resonate with me, but to Ms. Gray's credit, she presented it in a way that came across as honest and heartfelt, not preachy. She writes with a soft touch that will likely speak to readers of various religious persuasions.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Always a Good Read April 29 2010
By Deborah - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I know I have said this before but I really am a fan of Amish fiction by Shelley Shepard Gray. Unlike other Amish books, her stories do not involve conflict between the Amish world and the outside world. There are no main stories about Amish teens struggling between their world and the new things they discover during their Rumspringa or drama about the church and ways of belief. Instead her books just embrace the culture and just let the characters do their own thing and just be Amish. They are always good reads and just very comforting.

In this story, we meet up with schoolteacher Clara who has the unfortunate fate of being scarred from an accident when she was young. She lives with her mother who seems to overly depend on Clara almost to the point of suffocation. There seems to be no hope for a better life and as the years go by and she gets older, Clara resigns herself to this life. Then Tim, a young man trying to find himself, arrives in their town and everything begins to change. While I found myself liking Clara immediately from the beginning, it really took me a while to bond with Tim. He just got on my nerves at first, I think it might be due to maybe the community he was from being a bit stricter. As it stood, I felt that Clara had a lot more daring in her and was more outspoken. Which is more than I could say about Tim's annoying girlfriend Ruby. Woo, what a...well let's just say there are choice words I could have said about her that aren't very nice.

The story focuses on Clara and Tim's relationship as well as their own personal lives. There's a bit of a drama scene at the end but it ties things together nicely. Also part of the story and returning from the first book in the series is pregnant teen Lilly. I was a tad disappointed at the way her story started off in this book. I just felt that after all the buildup from the first book, it felt like this book was such a downer. Still though, I do like Lilly and I am looking forward to reading more about her in the series. Reading about the Amish culture was lots of fun as well. There's lots of talk about food which I like very much and I would love to go visit the restaurant where Lilly works. I really enjoy Gray's books and I am eager for the final book in the series. If you like Amish fiction and are in the mood for a sweet read, this is a great series.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
True beauty goes beneath the skin! April 28 2010
By Stephanie - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Spring's Renewal is a sweet love story of finding true beauty beyond outward looks.

Clara, badly burned when she was a little girl, has tried to be satisfied with her lonely life. However, she can't help but long for someone who would love her for HER and see past her disfigured body.

Tim, visiting his aunt and uncle, is drawn to the quiet Clara, despite the fact that he has a sweetheart back home. Which woman is right for him?

Spring's Renewal is the second book in Shelley's `Seasons of Sugarcreek' series. I hadn't realized my mother in law had book 1, Winter's Awakening, until after I'd read this book.

I think Spring's Renewal was pretty self-explanatory, although after glancing at the back of Winter's Awakening, I'd like to read it to know the background behind several of the characters, mostly Lilly.

You shouldn't judge a book by its cover...but sometimes I judge the cover by the book, and I did not think the cover depicted Clara at all!

Clara has green eyes on the cover (brown in book) and she does not appear to have any burn scars. I could almost think her face was turned just enough not to have to portray the scarring, but her right hand is clearly shown.

So what? There's a part in the book that makes a big deal about Tim holding Clara's right hand and how most people avoid touching her or her scarred hand. Ok...so not really a big deal in terms of the book itself, but I often notice those little things.

So, besides the cover and the few grammar/editing errors I found, I thought Spring's Renewal was a fast and easy rainy-day read and look forward to Autumn's Promise, the next book in the series.

Check out more book reviews on my blog: thecreativesideofsteph DOT blogspot DOT com
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This was more like it Feb. 8 2012
By J. Hopkins - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
I decided to read this second book in the Sugarcreek series, despite the fact the first one seemed rather slow and ordinary. I'm glad I did. This one almost made up for what was lacking in the first.

I loved Tim and Clara, and their story was heart-warming. Clara's scars made her even more courageous, amazing, and lovable. Tim's understanding and love was awesome. However, as with all good stories, their romance had its problems.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Enjoyable Romance April 14 2011
By Karen Zemek - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is a happy Christian romance story of how Cara, an Amish school teacher who is badly scarred from a fire sees her dreams come true. When Tim meets Cara, he realizes he does not love his hometown sweetheart as much as he thought he did, but falls for Cara. Although there are some obstacles to a life together, they find a way to work things out. This is a light, heartwarming read involving balancing one's responsibilities with the pursuit of happiness. The main theme is "that it's not right to judge a person by only outward looks. Sometimes when you do that, you miss out on a lot." It has some funny parts as well as some suspense in it. I enjoyed it!