25 Book Reviews

Thursday, January 21, 2016

"The Shadows Over This Olive Grove Hide More Than Just the Truth!!"

                                "Beyond the Silence"
          Tracie Peterson
      Kimberley Woodhouse

Lillian Porter has always had the great desire to fullfill her mother's dream of going west. When she hears about a nanny position available in Angel's Camp, California, she is sure that this is not a coincidence- it is meant for her!  Defying her grandfather's wishes, Lillian takes a chance on a new future, one that she desperately needs. She needs an escape from the controlling situation that she is currently enduring. It doesn't take long for her to question her wisdom in this decision- there are murky, questionable rumors swirling around Woodward Colton, her new employer. Should she believe them, after all, the gossip doesn't really match the man that she comes to know??? Are others accurate in repeating what they believe is the truth? Lillian just can not believe them, however does have her doubts. 

Something dark DID happen in the family's past. The seven year old boy, who become Lillian's charge has not spoken in over a year. Her job is now also her greatest desire, to draw him out of his shell, hoping that one day that he feel safe enough to share what scared him so . The Colton olive farm that seemed so peaceful and a place of refuge is not longer safe! Lillian encounters suspicious, frightening characters on their land as mysterious damage is being done to the farm on a regular basis. When the kind, considerate housekeeper is brutally attacked, the town once again believes the worse. Are these townspeople just being cruel or are there facts to support their horrible arguments??? Will the truth being uncovered help Lillian clear the name of the man she has come to care for so deeply or will it endanger her even more????

I have to admit that historical fiction is not usually one that I enjoy, however, this book definitely changed my opinion very quickly. A great book is one that can captivate me from beginning to end and this story certainly did!! I was immediately caught up and could not let go until I had completed reading the entire book.  A bit of romance was expected but this was one full of challenges, fears, and adventures . The desire for the good guy to win over all obstacles became my main focus. This Christian fiction book is one that reminds us to put our faith where it belongs, believe in the darkest hours and rejoice in the Lord when His Plans succeed. 

The character development was superior. Each of the characters took very little time to captivate my heart. How could they not?? There was a struggling widowed father, a small child stressed to the point of muteness, a nanny who herself has had a difficult relationship with her grandfather, a kind, simple young man who is mentally challenged but has a heart of gold, a housekeeper who, without a family of her own , has taken on the responsibility of the household with her love and care.  The desire to hug each one in turn was strong. I lived the story!! These characters live on in your heart long after finishing the book. 

The plot was fast moving and perfect in this old west town. The town formed a clear picture in my mind as did all of the antagonists that had their own selfish and dangerous motives. There was no chance to become bored, as around every corner, there appeared an unexpected twist or turn. The clear message shone throughout the book- throughout loss and  danger, prayer and faith can carry us and lead to a brighter future. The past can be forgotten but only if God's plan is followed. Patience in waiting for His Plan to be revealed is stressed. 

This is definitely a five star book!! Don't miss it!!

This book was supplied by Bethany House   and Graff Martin Communications in exchange for a fair and honest review. Now available from your local bookseller.

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