My ranking: 9 out of 10
Reading level: 14 & up
#1 Best Selling Christian author Beverly Lewis graces us with yet another of her spectacular Amish fiction novels. Book 1 of the Abram's Daughters series, The Covenant introduces us to the Ebersols; an Amish family residing in Gobbler's Knob. Tomboy Leah has what seems the perfect life, until her once innocent and lively sister, Sadie, commits an immoral and sinful act against her church and family when she enters a relationship with an Englischer; a person outside of the Amish community. But little did Sadie realize that her sin would not just affect her, but her entire family.
Meanwhile, against her father's desire for Leah to fall in love with the community's blacksmith's son, Gid, Leah becomes courted by and in love with her childhood sweetheart, Jonas. Her second cousin sweeps her off her feet and the couple swiftly realize that they were made for each other; but if Sadie's sin is revealed, will it ruin the young couple's hopes for a happy life as man and wife? And when Leah's father, Abram, sets up a situation where Jonas will be gone in Ohio for 6 months with the hope that Gid will have a chance to whoo his daughter, will the lovers ever have the life they dream of?
The book was very good and will catch your attention after reading the first chapter. You will quickly notice as you read that Leah and her younger sisters, Hannah and Mary Ruth, are very respectful and obedient to their elders. They all worked hard for a living, and were loving and kind to each other. Leah was extremely forgiving of her sister, and though her father desired her to be courted by someone else, Leah was still respectful and simply told her father she did not wish to be courted by him.
The reason I would not give this book to a young reader is because of the sinful act Sadie committed. Though the scene itself was not explained or written, the result of the immoral act is clear later in the book. It is obvious, though not descriptive. Through the entire book, Sadie is continually sinning and running off outside of the Amish community; against her parents will, against her church's will, and most importantly against God's will. By the end of the book, Sadie regrets her decisions but refuses to repent of them. The situations are necessary for the book, but are not suitable for all ages.
To Sum It Up:
The Covenant was a pleasure to read and I enjoyed every moment of it. I was continually wishing that I had the quick forgiveness that Leah did. She loved her sister so much, and though she was scared and hurt that she was losing her best friend she still showed kindness and attempted to put her sister back on the right path. Leah had such genuine love for her family; it set a great example for how we should love ours. I encourage you to enter Leah's story and learn for yourself the power of family, and the miracle of hope.