Bestselling and award-winning Christian fiction author Beth Wiseman has sold over two million books. She is the recipient of the coveted Holt Medallion, is 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 CBA, ECPA, Christianbook.com, and Publishers Weekly.
In this interview, Beth talks with us about her new novel, The Story of Love, the send book in her An Amish Bookstore Novel Series.
FF: What inspired the story in your book?
The Story of Love is book #2 in my Amish Bookstore Series, and two of the characters from the first installment—The Bookseller’s Promise—organically moved forward into this novel with a story of their own.
FF: What can you tell us about the main characters in your book?
This story involves an unusual love triangle with two women and one man. All three characters are non-Amish in the beginning of the book. First, there is our hero, Abraham Byler, who was raised in the Amish community where he currently resides, but he was never baptized into the faith. Abraham chose to become a police officer in his small-town community, and he’s dating a beautiful woman that he doesn’t really know on the inside. Brianna will do just about anything to keep her hooks in Abraham, a man considered a good catch in Montgomery, Indiana. But when Abraham’s crush, Yvonne Wilson, returns to town, his feelings are rekindled. Even though Yvonne refuses to interfere in Abraham’s relationship with Brianna, the couple finds themselves falling in love. When tragedy strikes, Abraham’s pacifist upbringing clashes with the violence in his line of work, and he begins to question everything—his relationship with Brianna, his feelings for Yvonne, and even his faith.
FF: Which character surprised you the most?
Brianna surprised me the most. I didn’t really “know” her the way I knew Yvonne and Abraham since Brianna was a new character in this second installment. In the beginning, I wasn’t sure if she was going to be a nice gal or the opposite. As I got to know her, she showed her true colors.
FF: Why do you think storytelling is such a powerful way to share truth?
I can’t speak for all authors, but I tend to write about things/events that I have experienced in my own life. To live through a situation, directly or indirectly, allows you to see motivations from various angles, and if those differing motivations carry into the story, then the reader can sort through the point of views and discover their version of the truth.
FF: What can you tell us about your next book?
The next—and final—book in the series, Hopefully Ever After, continues in the fictional world I’ve created in the real-life town of Montgomery, Indiana. In each story, there is a romance, a mystery, and faith challenges. And, not to give too much away, but coin lovers will enjoy the subplot about hidden treasure rumored to be hidden in the walls of the bookstore.
FF: What kind of research did you do for this book?
I am blessed to be able to combine business and pleasure in every book I write that is set in Indiana. I have family there, namely my precious and adorable grandchildren, so each visit presents an opportunity for family time. And it is a bonus that family members have Amish friends who have graciously invited me into their homes and hearts.
FF: What do you want readers to take away after reading your book?
I want readers to close the book, smile, and realize that God surprises us in miraculous ways. There is always hope in every situation. That is what I would like readers to take away after reading one of my books.
FF: What are the biggest challenges for you as an author writing in your specific genre?
When I started writing Amish fiction over fifteen years ago, there were only a few of us writing about the Plain people. As the popularity of the genre grew, so did the number of authors who write about the Amish. I think the biggest challenge is to come up with fresh content that hasn’t been overdone, and I hope I’ve done that with this series.
FF: What authors or books have inspired you as an author?
I read all types of genres, but if I had to pick an author who inspired me regarding the type of stories I write, it would be Beverly Lewis. I believe she pioneered the genre and led the way for those of us who felt called to write about the Amish folks. On a personal note, early in my career, I had an embarrassing moment on social media. As a “newbie”, I was very upset. I had never met Beverly—and I still haven’t—but she reached out to me via email and told me that this would pass and that she and her husband were praying for me. Everything turned out fine, but I appreciated her contacting me more than she probably knows.
FF: How has your faith or world view impacted the way you tell stories?
I think I’d like to turn this question around. It is my stories that have impacted my faith and world view. It took me quite a few years to figure out that with each book I write, I have been ministering to myself, taking my personal experiences, analyzing them, and feeling the freedom of knowing that my life and my stories are in God’s hands…and all part of His big and beautiful plan for me.
The Story of Love
An Amish Bookstore Novel Series #2
Genres: Amish, Amish Romance
Release Date: October 11, 2022
They come from different backgrounds…But are they destined to write a new chapter together?
With little left to tie her to her home state of Texas and yearning for a slower life, Yvonne Wilson jumps at the chance to shake things up with a move to Montgomery, Indiana. A dream job awaits her—managing an Amish bookstore for her good friends Jake and Eva. Besides the slow-paced setting and the comfort of beloved books, Yvonne hopes the change will help distract her from the emptiness she feels after the death of her fiancé.
No longer a part of the Amish community but still a resident of Montgomery, Abraham Byler finds himself in over his head with his job as a police officer combined with a new but fast-moving relationship with the wealthy and aggressive New York native Brianna Stone. When Abraham realizes that his old crush Yvonne is back in town, he’s not just in over his head—he suddenly finds himself head over heels for Yvonne—and in hot water with Brianna.
When the violence of police work comes up against his pacifist upbringing, Abraham is forced to question his original decision to leave the Amish faith for his career. Meanwhile, Yvonne is asking her own questions about why she feels such a deep peace in Montgomery—and how much that feeling has to do with Abraham and how much has to do with the workings of her own heart.
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