Janice Holt Giles is one of the grand old dames of Kentucky literature, having written numerous novels about Kentuckians of the past.
Rebecca clings to the tiny bit of autonomy she is able to retain as she continues her life in the community. She refuses to commit entirely to the Shakers because she is unable to accept their doctrines wholeheartedly. But how can she leave if Richard is determined to stay?
Rich in the details of late eighteenth century Kentucky living, as well as those of the Shaker community, The Believers is an engrossing tale of a strong woman caught in a situation that may remind readers of the modern-day closed religious societies that capture headlines from time to time. It is a coming-of-age story and a lovely romance. Trusting her own judgment, Rebecca must make difficult choices and defy the man she has always loved. Two caveats. It is a bit heavy on the use of dialect. Moreover, the way it deals with/portrays Rebecca’s slaves is embarrassing. Nevertheless, it’s a good book to read if you want to give Janice Holt Giles a try.