Hopefully Ever After is book #3 in the Amish Bookstore series. I have loved writing all three of these books, but I am especially excited for readers to dive into this last installment. If I had to summarize the storyline—aside from the sweet romance—it would be that we are not defined by our ancestry, our surroundings, history, or environment. We are each a child of God who can grow into the person we want to be.
Sixteen-year-old Eden Hale doesn’t want to be defined by her circumstances. When she arrives in Montgomery Indiana to stay with her Amish cousins, where no one knows her checkered background, she is determined not to let her past follow her. But as challenges and judgment threaten this opportunity for change, Eden begins to doubt her faith in herself.
Samuel Byler is a well-respected Amish man who falls hard for Eden, despite his parents’ disapproval. It would have been easy to have him ‘save’ Eden when fear and doubt begin to plague her.
But I decided to flip the plot in this story and have Eden save Samuel when his faith begins to slip.
With both their futures hanging in the balance, Eden and Samuel must decide who they are as individuals and what a life together—or apart—looks like.
This story percolated for a while and morphed and changed as I was writing. I often get to know my characters and motivations along the way. I wasn’t sure who was going to save who when I started the book. Eden wants an opportunity to explore the person she longs to be. And as badly as Samuel wants to walk beside her on the journey, he has faith issues that cause their paths to crisscross. Until they learn who they really are and what they truly want, they can’t be good for each other.
I think that readers will root for both characters as they fall in love, struggle with their faith, and face challenges from family members who think spending time together is dangerous for both of them.
But I don’t write what I consider strictly romance novels. I like to explore the relationships between other characters in the story, whether it’s parent and child, siblings, friendships, or unexpected unions that push the story forward. Readers will get their HEA, but not without meeting a host of interesting characters along the way. Those relationships become intricate to the romance plot, which makes my books fall into a women’s fiction category as much as romance.
God puts every story in my mind. I’m sure of it. If this book helps one young woman or man realize that they can be anyone that they choose—despite a troubled past, circumstances out of their control, or a family history that challenges their objectives—then I’ve done my job for Him.
That’s not to say that the journey isn’t reliant on choices that we make along the way, but I believe God is always on the path beside us. When we wander off, he gently nudges us onward toward the journey He has set forth for us, but we must recognize and listen to the voice of God. Fear and worry have a way of blocking that relationship if we allow those emotions to creep into our minds.
Eden and Samuel must defy expectations and presumptions, truly listen to the voice of God, and drown out well-meaning outsiders to find themselves—a prerequisite to deciding if they can move forward on the same path.
I hope readers new to the series will consider reading books #1 and #2—The Bookseller’s Promise and The Story of Love, respectively. Even though Hopefully Ever After can be read as a stand-alone, it’s fun to know the characters from the first two books, many of whom carry over into Hopefully Ever After.
I have loved creating this community and can visualize the main landmark—the bookstore, of course—in my mind as clearly as if it really exists. I feel the same way about my characters, and since this is the conclusion to this series, I have to say . . . I will miss them all.
Thanks to my readers for following me on my own amazing journey, and special thanks to Destination Amish for having me.
Blessings to all of you.
To become who they’re meant to be, Eden and Samuel must find the courage to defy expectations.
Sixteen-year-old Eden Hale doesn’t want to be defined by her current circumstances. With absent parents and a troubled past, Eden refuses to become what people expect. When she is sent to live with an Amish cousin she’s never met in Montgomery, Indiana, she welcomes the chance to become the person she wants to be without the burden of anyone’s judgment. Her hopes are confirmed when she meets Samuel, a young Amish man who seems to like her for who she really is.
Samuel Byler has grown up with strict Amish parents, and they aren’t happy that their only son is choosing to spend his free time with an outsider. As Eden and Samuel grow closer, disapproval swirls around the young couple. It isn’t long before Eden starts to doubt herself and wonders if she is doomed to repeat the mistakes of her own past, whether she wants to or not. Meanwhile, Samuel finds himself slipping further and further from his faith—to Eden’s dismay.
Both Eden’s and Samuel’s futures hang in the balance as they face decisions about who they are meant to be—both as individuals and together.
Bestselling and award-winning author Beth Wiseman has sold over two million books. She is the recipient of the coveted Holt Medallion, a two-time Carol Award winner, and has won the Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award three times. Her books have been on various bestseller lists, including CBD, CBA, ECPA, and Publishers Weekly. Beth and her husband are empty nesters enjoying country life in south central Texas. Visit her online at BethWiseman.com; Facebook: @AuthorBethWiseman; Twitter: @BethWiseman; Instagram: @bethwisemanauthor.