Thursday, June 13, 2024

My Thoughts on Unforgiven by Shelley Shepard Gray



They're each other's best hope for redemption--and love

Ex-con Seth Zimmerman has spent the last three years making amends by helping the vulnerable in his former Amish community. Lately, this mission includes calling on Tabitha Yoder, whose divorce from her abusive husband has isolated her from the community. Even though she never comes out of her house to talk to him, Seth knows she watches him from the window while he chops wood, clears her driveway, and drops off food.  
An uneasy friendship is just starting to take hold between them when small gifts begin to appear at Tabitha's home--gifts that can only be from her ex-husband. Seth might be Tabitha's only hope at maintaining her hard-won freedom from the man whose violent outbursts had almost cost her life. But coming to her rescue might mean he ends up behind bars once again.  

My Thoughts:

I don't read a lot of Amish stories, but I have enjoyed author Gray's stories in the past, and it has been a little bit since I have read one of hers. Here we have two individuals that have found themselves in horrible situations, due to circumstances mostly out of their control. They are now outside of their Amish community, living as Englishers but still close to family.

Tabitha has done the unthinkable and has divorced her violent husband who did put her in the hospital and almost killed her. She could not continue to live like that, as he would have ended up killing her. Her fear was palpable, and she really did not have the support she needed, unfortunately. Tabitha was really lonely and went for days without human contact. Reading how isolated she was, was giving me those tense feelings as well. It just seemed to ooze from the page.

Seth Zimmerman sees her though and cares for her. He had been coming over her house for a couple of years doing things for her like chopping wood or leaving groceries. He of all people knows what it is like to be shut out. He stepped in once upon a time to help a young woman and the consequences of that action landed him in prison. So now he is back, just not Amish anymore, and he has set his sights on his old crush Tabitha.

This story also included Seth's sister and her beau's point of views. Not only did this contain a new beginning for these two, but there was also a thread of suspense throughout as Tabitha was still not quite safe. This story really showed how rules, no matter how good they are, cannot replace the love and care we need to show others. They are not an excuse to forgo your Christian duty to mankind.

I was provided a copy of this novel from the publisher. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

About the Author:

Shelley Shepard Gray is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than 100 books, including Unforgiven. Two-time winner of the HOLT Medallion and a Carol Award finalist, Gray lives in Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town's bike trail. Learn more at

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