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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Whether you’ve experienced bullying, heartbreak or in-law trouble, you’re sure to relate to Cate in some way
Having once been hurt by a man who wanted her money more than he wanted her love, Cate Miller has sworn off courting. Cate prefers reading and working in her father’s business to cooking and cleaning, which is more the domain of her younger sister, Betsy. Attracting suitors from far across their Amish community, Betsy wants nothing more than to settle down and have...
Published 14 months ago by Amazon Customer

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Written quite well but came across as too much like the Taming of the Shrew
It was okay. Written quite well but came across as too much like the Taming of the Shrew. Nothing to make you think what's coming next. No surprises and a little too tame in places.
Published 9 months ago by janeey


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Whether you’ve experienced bullying, heartbreak or in-law trouble, you’re sure to relate to Cate in some way, 14 Feb. 2014
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Amazon Customer (Edinburgh, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Having once been hurt by a man who wanted her money more than he wanted her love, Cate Miller has sworn off courting. Cate prefers reading and working in her father’s business to cooking and cleaning, which is more the domain of her younger sister, Betsy. Attracting suitors from far across their Amish community, Betsy wants nothing more than to settle down and have a family of her own. But their father is concerned that Betsy is too young to be getting married, so he sets an ultimatum: Betsy can’t attend singings or court until Cate does. As much as she hates singings, Cate doesn’t want to hold her sister back from achieving happiness, so she reluctantly agrees to her father’s rule.

Despite how tightly she’s been guarding her heart, Cate can’t help but be intrigued by the newcomer to Paradise Township, Pete Treger. He finds a kindred spirit in Cate through their mutual love of reading, but Cate worries that he might only be showing an interest in her because of Betsy. Indeed, a few overheard conversations between Pete and some of Betsy’s suitors suggest that they may be persuading Pete to spend time with Cate to get them closer to Betsy. But when Betsy reveals a secret that threatens to devastate their father, Cate has all the more reason to consider courting Pete. Is a lifetime of convenience worth the happiness of Cate’s younger sister?

I’ve got to come clean here: although I studied English at one of the best universities in the UK, I’ve never read The Taming of the Shrew. My entire knowledge of this play stems from the film Ten Things I Hate About You and an old episode of Moonlighting in which the characters put on a performance of the play (I actually had to Google this to be certain that I didn’t make it up, but IMDB ensures that this episode does exist!) I can’t vouch for how well Courting Cate matches up with the original Shakespearean play, but I do love the concept Leslie Gould has chosen for her Courtships of Lancaster County series. We’ve had Amish vampires, angels and presidents, as well as murder mysteries and science fiction—why not try to adapt a Shakespeare play into an Amish setting?

I was unsure as to how well the plot of the play would convert to the modern-day Amish setting, but I think this is the one occasion where this story would work. A father demanding that one daughter marry before the other would seem ridiculous in any other setting, but it worked in an Amish family where the father does make all the rules. And in spite of his ultimatum, Cate and Betsy’s father isn’t the typical stern figure that you come across in Amish fiction, which made for a nice change. He truly cared about his daughters and wanted to do what was best for him, even if he struggled to raise them without the help of a wife.

Anyone who has read one of Leslie Gould’s previous Amish novels (such as The Amish Nanny or The Amish Bride) will recall that they were written in first-person, and didn’t switch between multiple perspectives. Courting Cate has the same narrative structure, which made it feel more like a story of self-discovery than a conventional romance. Never fear—there is plenty of romance in this book, and it does have a happy ending! You’d think that, being the hopeless romantic that I am, I’d miss the chance to get inside Pete’s head and figure out what makes him tick. But honestly? I was so immersed in Cate’s story that I didn’t have time to miss experiencing the story from another perspective. And although the first-person storytelling did make a nice change from the typical narrative of Amish novels, Courting Cate has enough of the standard tropes of Amish fiction that fans probably won’t mind the change.

As I said before, I don’t have a particularly strong knowledge of The Taming of the Shrew, but that isn’t essential to enjoying this novel. Although it was fun to pick up a few of the parallels to the original story, Cate’s tale is one that I imagine any woman can relate to. If you’ve experienced heartbreak, bullying or the ties of family loyalty, Cate won’t be hard to relate to. Although I don’t think I’m quite as stubborn as Cate, I could certainly understand her hesitance at getting close to someone after being bullied as a child and teenager.

But as impressed as I was that Courting Cate acknowledged the existence of bullying amongst the Amish, it did feel like this aspect of the story was glossed over and resolved a little too quickly. Although Cate is an adult at the start of the story, her sister’s friends still tease her and make fun of her, and it’s clear that she’s uncomfortable with this. But at the close of the story, everything is resolved with these characters. Personally, as a victim of bullying, I don’t think it would be that easy for Cate to put aside her hurt, no matter how strongly the Amish feel about forgiveness. As a recent article on bullying and the Church revealed, bullying leaves longer lasting scars than we’re willing to acknowledge. I think this aspect of the storyline was tidied up a little too easily. Likewise, the issues between Cate and her in-laws felt a bit swept under the rug. I know Cate realised that she’d misinterpreted her in-laws, and this is something I’m sure many of us do, but this part of the storyline occurred so fast that I didn’t entirely buy the changes in their relationship.

Despite my qualms about how a couple of storylines were wrapped up, I was genuinely impressed by Courting Cate. Although the Courtships of Lancaster County series is evidently going to be very different from the Amish novels Leslie co-authored with Mindy Starns Clark, I have a feeling that her new series is going to appeal to variety of Amish fans. Whether you’ve experienced bullying, heartbreak or in-law trouble, you’re sure to relate to Cate in some way.

Review title provided by Bethany House.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Written quite well but came across as too much like the Taming of the Shrew, 9 July 2014
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
It was okay. Written quite well but came across as too much like the Taming of the Shrew. Nothing to make you think what's coming next. No surprises and a little too tame in places.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars lovely romance, 21 April 2014
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
This is a.lovely romance with three-dimensional, well written characters. A beautiful story with no swearing and no sex, and a happy ending.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, 25 April 2014
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I love reading about Amish life & this book was another great read. Cate is not your typical Amish young lady & it tells of her troubles & strife in trying to do the right thing to help her sister. I got it as a free download but would not have been disappointed if I had had to have paid for it. Would certainly recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Nice Amish Book, 19 Nov. 2013
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I read this on the Kindle

I read this & it certainly a different Amish story & Cate i felt was used by her sister but she been mother to her as their own mother died after giving birth to her

You see a different side to what the Amish may do or how they behave it was not all sweetness & like
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars non grabber, 13 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Couldn't get into it. If books don't grab me early on I dump it and start another. Life is too short
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Amish Series, 31 July 2014
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
What an interesting read. Would they love one another or would they stay in an `agreeable`marriage for the sake of her sister. I enjoyed reading the story, but did guess the end while I was reading the story. Not quite the ending I expected but very close. A good light read for the beach.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Amish version of Taming of the Shrew., 25 July 2014
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bookwormkt (Leeds, West Yorkshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Cate has been hurt by various men and is getting old (in Amish terms) for marriage. Reworks the Taming of the Shrew theme in an Amish community, but never becomes ridiculous. I thoroughly enjoyed the book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars good holiday read, 2 Jun. 2014
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Amazon Customer "kay" (WARWICKSHIRE ENGLAND) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I enjoyed this book, it keeps you glued, loses it now and then but you get back into it. First I have read of this author but it was good. I read it on holiday.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Really good read., 2 Sept. 2014
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This review is from: Courting Cate (The Courtships of Lancaster County, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I got this as a free Kindle e-book. I loved this book. I'm a very fussy reader, I don't read just anything, and rarely do books compel me to read on like this one. It was a really sweet romance, and drew me in. The two main characters were very likeable and the other characters interesting too. This is the first Amish romance I've ever read, and the author gives enough details about their way of life to explain things but not give pages and pages of research so it worked well. Thank you to the author, I will definitely be reading more of your books.
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