Amish romance novels are a hugely popular subgenre of the romance genre. They are known for quaint and lovely settings, uplifting and inspiring themes, and slow-building, longing-filled love stories. You’ll find the usual romance novel tropes, plus a fair share of matchmakers, letter-writing, buggy accidents, baking, and quilting.
If you love reading series, then you are in for a treat. Nearly every book on this list is part of a series, so if you enjoy this genre, your to-read list will never run out.
Many of us read for escape, and daydreaming looks different for everyone. We live in a time full of distraction, constant entertainment, and high demands. For those looking for a respite from the daily grind of modern life, the Amish romance novel may be a great place to land. Keep reading to see if any of these novels will make it on to your to-read list.
The Best Amish Romance Novels
The Shunning by Beverly Lewis
This novel tops the list because it is arguably the originator of the genre. Beverly Lewis’ The Shunning was the first popular Amish romance novel, and the genre has continued to grow since its publication in 1997.
Katie Lapp is set to marry Bishop John, and life is going as she expected. Until, that is, she finds a beautiful, infant-sized, satin dress in her family’s attic. This discovery begins a journey that redefines everything Katie thought she knew about her parents and whether or not she belongs in the community she’s always called home.
First Impressions: An Amish Tale of Pride and Prejudice by Sarah Price
Who doesn’t love a good Pride and Prejudice retelling?
Jane and Lizzie’s parents are hoping to find them suitors who can take over their family farm.
Enter Charles Beachey, the son of a prominent Amish farmer, and his cousin Frederick. Jane begins courting Charles, but Lizzie is interested in none of it: not courting and certainly not Frederick. She thinks she has him all figured out, but in time she’ll learn that first impressions can be misleading and that perhaps her initial prejudice can be overcome.
A Picture of Love by Beth Wiseman
After being dumped by her fiance Thomas for another girl, Naomi Byler is beginning to think she will never get married. She’s more or less content, cooking for the guests at The Peony Inn and enjoying the affection of the inn’s owners, Esther and Lizzie, who treat her like family.
Amos Lantz’s own fiance died tragically just a year ago. When he and his mother arrive at the inn as guests, he is still nursing a broken heart.
Connected by grief, Naomi and Amos become fast friends, especially when they discover a mutual love for painting. Esther and Lizzie begin to play matchmaker, hoping to bring the pair together.
When her former fiance Thomas returns and tries to win her back, Naomi must decide where her heart and loyalties lie in Beth Wiseman’s A Picture of Love.
Anything But Plain by Suzanne Woods Fisher
How about that punny title? I see you, Suzanne Woods Fisher.
Lydie Stoltzfus is not the plain and perfect girl everyone expects the bishop’s daughter to be. Her life is a mess, she’s between jobs, and she is starting to wonder if leaving her family and church is the only option she has. Saying goodbye to her neighbor, Nathan, would be the hardest of all. He says he loves her, but neither she nor Nathan’s own father think she’s good enough for him.
Everything changes, though, when Lydie gets a job working for the local doctor. It gives her time to process whether to stay or go, and in the meantime, Dok gets to know Lydie and realizes she has the symptoms of a disorder that is rare in the Amish community. Would treatment be enough to help Lydie to stay? Pick up a copy of Anything But Plain, and find out.
Building a Future by Amy Clipston
Building a Future is built on a common romance trope: the love triangle.
Michelle Lantz has always wanted to be a wife and mother. After dating Korey Bontrager for over a year, she assumes she’ll live out that future with him, but his feelings seem to be waning. She feels too invested to give up on the relationship, but as Korey puts distance between them, it gives her time to evaluate her own feelings.
Tyler Bontrager, Korey’s brother, has put everything into expanding his father’s roofing business, leaving no time for courtship and love. He does have time to constantly argue with his brother, though. He doesn’t approve of how Korey treats Michelle, and Korey thinks Tyler is always trying to take what is rightfully his.
After providing Michelle solace in a tough moment, Tyler realizes he has feelings for her, but he tries to ignore them because he doesn’t want to cause conflict with Korey. When the town is rocked by a tragic accident, Michelle and Tyler have to reckon with their feelings and decide whether to spare Korey or risk building a future together.
Happily Ever Amish by Shelley Shepard Gray
Addie Byler isn’t expecting a happily ever after (don’t miss punny title #2 here). She accepts that her willfulness and tendency to talk to her rescue donkey, Snickers, doesn’t make her your typical dream girl. That is, until she begins receiving letters from a secret admirer.
Daniel Miller doesn’t like Addie, but he doesn’t hate her either. When he hears people teasing her because she’s never had a beau, Daniel sends her a little note of encouragement. They begin writing back and forth, and Daniel is struck by Addie’s thoughtful, sweet words. There is more to her than he realized, and he finds himself falling for her.
What will happen if Addie learns the truth of how their letters began? Will they be able to find a happily ever after together? You’ll have to read Happily Ever Amish to find out.
Love in Plain Sight by Kathleen Fuller
Another punny title, but a pretty serious story.
In Love in Plain Sight, Katharine Miller came to Birch Creek to work at Stoll’s Inn and escape her past. She works quietly and diligently–and with her guard up.
Ezra Bontrager isn’t interested in marriage, but he’s interested in learning more about the new girl in town who is also his coworker at the inn. It doesn’t seem like she came to Birch Creek in response to the want ad that advertised the town’s many eligible bachelors–so why is she here?
As Katharine and Ezra get to know each other, Katharine begins to let her guard down and Ezra softens to the idea of marriage. When the past comes back to haunt her (and Birch Creek’s past comes rushing back as well), will their budding relationship be able to withstand the truth?
Marry Me, Millie by Amy Lillard
Millie Bauman has found herself widowed and pregnant with her first child. Thank goodness for her Aunt Sylvie and the beloved Whoopie Pies her Widows Club whips up each week. She doesn’t know what she would do without them.
Millie isn’t looking for love when Henry King arrives in town, and neither is he. But the Widows Club has other ideas. As their neighbors begin to play matchmaker, the two pretend to play along…until they’re not playing anymore and true feelings begin to develop.
They’ve both been hurt before, but as Millie gets ready to welcome a new baby into the world, perhaps there is a chance for new life and new love all at once. Will she hear the words, Marry Me, Millie?
Foundation of Love by Amy Clipston
A widow and a widower. A fourteen-year age gap. A longing for love. A disapproving community.
Crystal Glick moves to town to live with her brother’s family after her father’s death and a broken engagement. Duane Bontrager is still mourning the loss of his wife of 24 years, Connie. He and his grown sons are trying to manage a thriving roofing business and learning to live without Connie.
Duane is instantly drawn to Crystal when he meets her as he’s repairing her brother’s roof. She feels the same. No one else approves, though. The bishop has a different widow in mind to match him with, and his sons don’t want him to pursue anyone.
Will Crystal and Duane be able to overcome the obstacles to their love and make it work, or will the town have the last word? Find out in Amy Clipston’s Foundation of Love.
The Story of Love by Beth Wiseman
Book 2 of 3 in The Amish Bookstore Novels series, The Story of Love follows the life of Yvonne Wilson as she moves from Texas to Montgomery, Indiana. She has landed her dream job: managing an Amish bookstore. Perhaps being caught up in stories and quiet days will help Yvonne cope with the emptiness she’s felt since her fiance died.
Abraham Byler left the Amish community behind for a job as a police officer and a relationship with Brianna Stone, an aggressive New Yorker who is a stark contrast to the proper Amish girl. When he hears that his old crush, Yvonne, is back in town, though, he finds himself falling back in love with her.
They both have questions. Abraham has to reconcile his pacifist upbringing with the violence of police work. Yvonne has to sort through how much of her newfound peace and comfort is tied to her new home…and how much of it is tied to being around Abraham again. It’s complicated, but all good love stories are.
The Promise of Easter by Marta Perry
In The Promise of Easter, Anna Stoltzfus is making the most of life after loss. Losing her beloved brother in a tragic accident was incredibly painful, but she finds great comfort in her close-knit family and fulfilling job as a teacher at the Orchard Hill Amish School. She’s doing just fine…until the man Anna deems responsible for James’s death returns to Promise Glen.
Matthew King is deep in grief after losing his best friend. Anna knows forgiveness is at the heart of being Amish, but she can’t find it in herself to forgive Matthew. It was so much easier to cope with her loss when Matthew wasn’t in town, but now he is back and her father has accepted his offer to work on their farm.
As Easter preparations begin, Anna gets to know a new side of Matthew. He is far different from the reckless boy she remembers. Perhaps Easter is the perfect backdrop for forgiveness, hope, and new life.
The Orchard by Beverly Lewis
Nonviolence is at the core of Amish belief, so everyone is surprised when Ellie Hostetler’s brother Evan is selected for the Vietnam War draft and they find out he did not seek conscientious objector status. It was assumed Evan would take over the family orchard, but Evan has other plans.
As Evan leaves for bootcamp, Ellie finds herself caught between her new beau Menno and her brother’s best friend Sol. Unlike her brother, Sol is a conscientious objector, and she finds solace in his steady presence as they work together in the orchard.
With everything in Ellie’s world shifting, she feels herself drawn to Sol more and more. Will her family be able to face a future they didn’t see coming? Will she end up with Menno or Sol? Read The Orchard to find out.
The Courtship Plan by Kathleen Fuller
Charity Raber is not going to leave love up to chance. She arrived in Birch Creek with a plan: secure one of the desperate bachelors who was advertised in the town’s newspaper. Unfortunately for Charity, that advertisement was a prank.
Hope sparks again when she’s set up with Jesse Bontrager, but Jesse is not on board with any of Charity’s plans. He isn’t interested in a relationship with anyone, least of all her.
One year later, Charity is settled in the nearby town Marigold, caring for an elderly English woman. Charity has gone back to the drawing board to revise her courtship plan. When Jesse moves in next door and learns of Charity’s plans, he is sure she’ll make a fool of herself. He’s determined not to let that happen. What does his involvement mean? Might Jesse be reconsidering his feelings after all? Read The Courtship Plan to find out.
Love in Unlikely Places by Linda Byler
Unmarried at twenty-six, most people assume Emma isn’t married because she’s too picky. Few people know that she had been in love once and ended up with a broken heart.
A whole new world opens up for Emma when she travels to North Carolina to work as a nanny for a non-Amish family, and while she’s there, she meets Ben. He is an Amish contractor working on the house next door. His familiarity provides her great comfort in the midst of so many new things, and she is won over by his charming, outgoing nature and his bold affection for her.
When Emma is suddenly forced to leave North Carolina, she doesn’t get a chance to explain anything to Ben. Back in her Amish community, she has no way to contact him, and she waits as the days go by and there’s no word from him.
She misses him terribly and manages to get back to North Carolina to see him again. What she finds will shatter her world again. Will her heart be broken again? Or will she end up finding Love in Unlikely Places?
The Amish Farmer’s Proposal by Barbara Cameron
In The Amish Farmer’s Proposal, Abe Stoltzfus is an honorable man. He only wants to propose to Lavinia Fisher if he knows he can provide for her, but between the uncertainty of farm life and his recent injury from a rooftop fall, Abe is hesitant.
Lavinia is the daughter of a farmer. She knows how uncertain farm life can be, and yet she wants everything life with Abe has to offer. When Abe continues to hesitate, Lavinia makes him an interesting proposal…one he just can’t refuse.
A Promise of Forgiveness by Jo Ann Brown
Recently widowed, Naomi Ropp returns to her parents’ Bliss Valley home with boisterous twin toddler boys and her fair share of secrets. She’s not the only one with secrets, though. She’s shocked to find out her parents have been hiding something huge.
Samuel King finds himself playing the part of Naomi’s confidante. She never expected to lean on the shoulder of her childhood tormentor, but nothing seems to be going right these days. Samuel takes this as an opportunity to right his past wrongs.
When they discover a sleeping newborn abandoned on his porch, the pair team up to take care of the baby. Will Naomi be able to forget who Samuel was and embrace who he has become? Read A Promise of Forgiveness for an uplifting story of the power of love and second chances.
Christmas at the Amish Market by Shelley Shepard Gray
Christmas is a classic setting for any romance novel (thank you, Hallmark). Everything feels just a little more magical at that time of year.
Jenny is still reeling from a painful breakup when her niece Liesl invites her to spend Christmas at the Amish Market. Liesl’s beau, Wesley, runs the market, but he has been so busy with the holiday rush that he barely has time for her.
When Jenny arrives, though, she quickly falls for Wesley. He’s everything she’s ever wanted in a man…but she can’t betray Liesl that way. Are Liesl’s feelings more complicated than she’s let on? Perhaps everyone might find what they’re looking for at the Amish market this Christmas season.
The Dawn of Christmas by Cindy Woodsmall
Sadie loves the freedom and independence of her mission trips to Peru, but her family wants her to settle down and stay for good. Levi, dealing with his own heartbreak and wanting to keep all women at arms’ length, is not looking for romance.
The two hatch a plan to pretend they are dating. At first, they just want to get everyone’s noses out of their business, but before long, the lines blur between pretending and beginning to fall for each other. To see how this classic fake relationship trope plays out for Sadie and Levi, check out The Dawn of Christmas.
The Choice by Suzanne Woods Fisher
Carrie Weaver has a choice to make. She was planning to elope with baseball player Solomon Riehl and leave their Amish community behind. Days before they are set to leave, tragedy strikes and Carrie is left brokenhearted. She ends up entering into a marriage of convenience with the quiet, serious Daniel Miller.
They both enter marriage with heartbreak and secrets, but perhaps they can begin to heal together. For a slow, tender love story, pick up a copy of The Choice by Suzanne Woods Fisher.
Falling to Pieces: A Shipshewana Amish Mystery by Vanetta Chapman
Two women–one Amish, one not–work together to organize an online quilt auction. As different as can be, they never expect to become friends, but a murder, a surprising prime suspect, and a stubborn detective throw them into an unlikely alliance. Together, can they solve the mystery and catch the killer?
Why are Amish romance books so popular?
Readers of many genres read to escape, and Amish romance books offer a quaint, bucolic setting for readers to get lost in. If you’re new to the genre, picture this: pleasant scenery, quiet longing, less tech and distraction, and more connection with community, values, and nature.
Others read Amish romance novels for the way faith is incorporated into the characters’ lives or because they feel safe to read a romance novel in the Amish genre knowing there won’t be any sexual content.
Arguably, Beverly Lewis is the queen of the genre. Her 1997 novel The Shunning began the genre, and she has published over 100 books, many of which fall in the Amish romance genre. Several of her books have been turned into movies, and her novels have inspired a thriving genre.
What are the key features of a good Amish romance novel?
The key features of a good Amish romance novel are not that different from your average romance novel. Two people fall in love, despite obstacles, tragedy, or misunderstanding, and live happily ever after. Amish romance novels also feature inspiring, faith-based themes and no sexual content.
Who reads Amish romances?
Funnily enough, the Amish are not the target audience for Amish romance novels. Most readers (and authors) are evangelical Christian women.
Do Amish romance novels incorporate the usual romance novel tropes?
A romance trope is a plot device used in many romantic movies and books that audiences easily recognize. As this top 20 list shows, Amish romance novels incorporate many of our tried and true tropes, such as enemies to lovers, second chance romance, the love triangle, and more.