Karen Ann Hopkins
You can read the Goodreads summary here.
I am a huge fan of Amish fiction, the works of Beverly Lewis in particular, so I was happy to see HarlequinTeen was coming out with an Amish novel! The description really appealed to me and I was excited to see Temptation on NetGalley.
Temptation is told from two points of views, that of Noah, a young Amish man who is of courting age, and that of Rose, a sixteen-year-old girl who moves in next door to Noah's Amish farming community. Because Rose's father is a doctor, the families get together for dinner to meet and Noah and Rose have an instant attraction. Knowing everything about their relationship would be difficult, they still continue to see each other and their feelings grow more serious.
It seems like everything is stacked against Noah and Rose from the beginning, despite their mutual attraction. Noah has no desire to be "English" and Rose really has no desire to become Amish, either. Rose is completely ignorant of the Amish lifestyle, focusing more on their "antifeminist rules" rather than their faith; she has plans to go to college and wait to get married until her late twenties. That was the one thing that really bugged me about Rose. You cannot view the Amish as "antifeminist" because they are a faith group. At the heart of the Amish lifestyle is their faith, not a set of rigid rules, and Rose completely failed to see that. Rose doesn't seem to have any faith at all, so for her to consider turning Amish to be with Noah seemed a little out there to me, like she would be doing it for all the wrong reasons.
But that didn't detract from my reading of the novel at all. Rose might seem ignorant, but that was probably the point. There were times during the book that I felt Rose and Noah should just give up, but there were also times where I felt they could overcome anything to be together. Even now that I'm done with the book, I cannot decide if I want them to make it or not - I'll have to wait until the next book in the series to find out if they do or not!
Despite all that, I found myself really empathizing with Noah and Rose. Even though it seemed really obvious to me that their relationship was doomed, the chemistry between them was very intense and appealed to me. Who doesn't want to have feelings like that when it comes to their significant others? But a part of me felt it was just lust, and that for Noah and Rose to actually be together as man and wife... well it just seemed impossible. Or maybe not. I don't know! I love that this book got me thinking about what was the right thing to do here; it's not black and white at all, it's obviously a hard decision for anyone involved. While Rose and Noah spent a great deal of time thinking about it seriously, I felt like both sets of their parents didn't give it as much thought, and maybe gave in too easily.
This novel of self-discovery was amazing. I highly, highly recommend it for fans of YA contemporary romance. The Amish aspect is a fresh new theme on the YA market and was very enjoyable. I'm eagerly looking forward to the sequel so I can find out if Rose and Noah will make it!
Temptation will be released June 26th, so preorder now!