When two young Amish men find love, will they risk losing everything?
In a world where every detail of life–down to the width of a hat brim–is dictated by God and the all-powerful rules of the community, two men dare to imagine a different way. At 18, Isaac Byler knows little outside the strict Amish settlement of Zebulon, Minnesota, where there is no rumspringa for exploration beyond the boundaries of their insular world. Isaac knows he’ll have to officially join the church and find a wife before too long, but he yearns for something else–something he can’t name.
Dark tragedy has left carpenter David Lantz alone to support his mother and sisters, and he can’t put off joining the church any longer. But when he takes on Isaac as an apprentice, their attraction grows amid the sweat and sawdust. David shares his sinful secrets, and he and Isaac struggle to reconcile their shocking desires with their commitment to faith, family and community.
Now that they’ve found each other, are they willing to lose it all?
Note: Contains explicit sexual situations and graphic language. This is not an inspirational/Christian romance.
Let me just say, this is not your grandmother’s Amish romance. 🙂 You will not walk away thinking, “oh, that is sweet, they kissed and now they are getting married”.
This is a M/M romance set in an Amish community. The most creative basis for a book that I have ever read. In the end, it was about love, and love knowing no bounds, including strict religious societal bounds. But what an amazing premise, to set it in an Amish society was extraordinarily creative, and I’ll say it….HOT!!!!
The title of the book speaks to what you feel in the book, it is a Forbidden Rumspringa. Wikipedia describes it as: “Rumspringa normally begins around the age of 14 to 16 and ends when a youth chooses baptism within the Amish church, or instead leaves the community.” It is a time for young men and women to decide where their future lies, by testing their own boundaries and accepting their consequences. In this case, two men embark on a forbidden one, that would leave them without their family, without their church, and wandering in the outside world with no direction.
This book was surprising to me in so many ways. The first thing that hit me almost right away was the wealth of information for an Amish community that the author included in this book. Even when you didn’t realize that was what was happening, you were getting information on what an Amish community looks like, from one society to the next (hint: they are not all the same). The research this author must have done was incredible. From whether they were allowed to have reflective triangles on the back of their buggies, to the use of rubber or elastic, to eating in restaurants, all this and more is included in this book. I really felt I was getting an education into the society, while reading about two beautiful men falling in love.
Another surprise, was more internal. I got butterflies again. (I know, sounds corny, but let me explain.) I have been reading m/m for about a year now, and I have soaked up well over a hundred books in that time. I wouldn’t say that I have gotten jaded, exactly, but I have an idea what to expect. This book, as the two MC’s were falling in love, would give me that little feeling in my stomach when they are just about to kiss, that “awwww” moment, where you can’t wait to see how it plays out. I will admit that I haven’t had that in a little while. It was that feeling that I used to get when I first started reading m/f romances back in high school. Forbidden! And there are sex scenes (remember, this is not your grandmother’s Amish romance) and they are hot and steamy. Just saying…the workbench scene…**fans self**
David and Isaac were such a perfect match together. David being more “worldly”, doing things like watching movies, and selling furniture online, all secretly, while being the sole financial support for his family. Meanwhile Isaac hasn’t had a Coke in 10 years, isn’t allowed to read anything beyond the bible and other approved books, and is told to go and work for David, despite being 18. Their love grew over months, not insta-love, and they just fit together. Knowing that what they were doing was seen as wrong by everyone in their community, and yet, from the beginning, they knew that it felt right when they were together, natural.
As the book was winding down, and I could see the percentage drifting closer and closer to 100% with no real resolution yet, I will admit to having gotten nervous. I thought, how can this be wrapped up to an HEA or HFN in just a few pages, and leave me feeling satisfied? Will there be a cliffhanger? Will I want to throw my phone through into the next room? Well, thank goodness, I was proven wrong, although here’s where the author surprised me once again. We did find the HFN that I was hoping for, but at that moment I thought “wow, that seemed rushed to me, I don’t feel like the book should just finish here”. And then I read the words “Journey with Isaac and David in A Clean Break coming in early 2015” and suddenly my heart was light and happy again, and I was able to feel completely satisfied. They had their HFN, and I was still able to see how they continued onto their HEA next year.
I don’t think I need to say this, but I will state for the record, this book gets 5+ pieces of eye candy for me, and I will be sitting by my kindle waiting for book number 2, and beating back anyone that gets in the way of Ms. Andrews completing the follow up book. Read this!!!
Ms. Andrews has generously offered a copy of one of her backlist titles to our readers. Yeah!
So go sign up!