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Trapped by obligation, one woman longs for the freedom of true love.
It is 1844 and Lacey Bishop's life is a tangled mess. When circumstances move Lacey to a nearby Shaker village, she is not prepared for the new life that awaits her. In the midst of her deep loneliness, Lacey works to fit in with this odd group. But everything shifts when she finds herself drawn to a Shaker man in a village where such relationships are forbidden.
Can Lacey ever find true happiness in this mysterious place?
"When you step into the world of Ann Gabhart's The Blessed, you'll find it inhabited by a truly delightful cast of characters. Theirs is a multileveled love story . . . between a man and a woman, yes, but also between a woman and a child not her own. Certainly, a tender and inspiring read."--Ann Tatlock, award-winning novelist
"Ann H. Gabhart takes us on a remarkable journey into the lives of the Shakers and their community. With a compelling style, she weaves a story of love, compassion, and a young woman's determination to find God's truth. From cover to cover, The Blessed captivates and challenges--an absolutely wonderful read."--Judith Miller, author of A Bond Never Broken
"A heartwarming story of second chances, The Blessed takes readers on an unforgettable journey of love, self-sacrifice, and learning to trust God in seemingly impossible circumstances. Skillful research and a well-woven story make for a genuine page-turner!"--Lorna Seilstad, author of the Lake Manawa Summers series
"A thoughtful exploration of a young woman's coming of age in a Shaker Community, The Blessed is a satisfying, joyful read."--Jan Watson, author of the award-winning Troublesome Creek series
"Readers will love The Blessed . . . Ann H. Gabhart weaves a tender story of forbidden longing and loyalty, and her deep understanding of the Shaker historical setting rings true."--Marta Perry, author of Sarah's Gift
"Ann Gabhart has written a fine and fair rendering of the Shaker ways and how the beliefs of this communal society touched the lives of those within the community and those without. As someone interested in the history of communal societies, I often wondered how the Shakers saw their world and faith and how their neighbors might have responded. Ann has shown us through distinctive and fallible characters how easily one can be led astray by doctrine not infused with God's grace."--Jane Kirkpatrick, award-winning author of The Daughter's Walk