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Reviews

"The promise of the cover is borne out by the content: an engaging analysis of 'bonnet rippers' and their audience."

"Weaver-Zercher’s book is a fascinating read, that raises some questions about this increasingly popular genre, but also tries to add complexity to our understandings of how Amish fiction functions."

"Thrill of the Chaste is an entertaining read... [Weaver-Zercher's] light, engaging voice makes her ideas accessible. I found myself caught up in her rich, often humorous descriptions... Weaver-Zercher redeems the genre and its readers."

"The unusual subject of Amish romance is treated engagingly in this crossover book... Highly recommended."

"Weaver-Zercher’s book-length exploration is not only a groundbreaking contribution to an area that deserves more study, but also an excellent read, as all-consuming and hard to put down for this scholar of American literature and popular culture as Amish romance novels are for their devoted fans."

"Thrill of the Chaste is a well-written, well-researched, and very readable study of this fast growing fictional subgenre, and Weaver-Zercher sheds much light on the importance of these texts for understanding contemporary American culture... A major contribution to literary analysis, this book will fascinate all who have wondered about the Amish and why so many people want to read about them."

"Weaver-Zercher has made a significant contribution to the field with a very comprehensive and scholarly approach to the "bonnet fiction" phenomenon of the 21st century... Thrill of the Chaste is of interest to anyone working with reader-response theories, the uses and functions of popular literature, and the commodification of culture and cultural products. Weaver-Zercher's book is importantly about the history and evolution of the genre; however, the most significant contribution that the book makes is its examination and evaluation of the publishing industry that is both meeting and creating demand for the genre."

"Articulate, relevant and beautifully written... [Thrill of the Chaste] is very accessible to those who will give themselves to it. Those who choose to read it will undoubtedly find themselves more discriminating readers."

"In this comprehensive book, Valerie Weaver-Zercher explores the recent phenomenon of Amish "bonnet fiction"... In well-written, engaging prose, Weaver-Zercher argues convincingly that this genre is production-drive in nature."

"Timely and engaging... Thrill of the Chaste is an eminently readable book... This is a welcome text for a number of fields; we will, indeed, be writing about it for some time."

"Weaver-Zercher's energetic and witty study reaches beyond an examination of the popularity of Amish fiction for individual readers."

"As Valerie Weaver-Zercher tracks the sources, emergence, and sudden rise of Amish romance fiction, she looks deeply at the writers, readers, and cultural changes that conspired to create the phenomenon. She writes with passion, principle, and wit, raiding academic disciplines to create a more-than-intelligent analysis of 'bonnet books.'"

"Readable and engaging, Thrill of the Chaste studies the exploding subgenre of Amish fiction from every angle: Why is it so popular? What are readers seeking? Do these stories truly reflect the Amish? What motivates the authors? The publishers? Sometimes hard-hitting but always fair, Weaver-Zercher's fascinating book is a must-read for anyone interested in the plain life."

"The scholarship is sound—the author deftly incorporates theoretical, historical, and sociological research into her extensive study of the genre, its producers, and its readers. The prose is both lovely and lively. Quite simply, a delight to read."