Tag: Marta Perry

Guest Review: Where Secrets Sleep by Marta Perry

Posted April 2, 2015 by Tina R in Reviews | 0 Comments

Where Secrets Sleep by Marta PerryTina’s review of Where Secrets Sleep by Marta Perry.

After suffering a terrible betrayal, Allison Standish flees Philadelphia for the small Amish village of Laurel Ridge. There, she comes into an unexpected inheritance—her late grandmother bequeathed her a mansion housing various shops. Allison intends to sell Blackburn House, until one of her tenants, single father Nick Whiting, challenges everything she believes about her estranged grandmother and the Amish community, and she decides to stay—temporarily.

Soon, strange stipulations in her grandmother’s will bring to Allison’s door distant relatives and seething townsfolk who think Blackburn House shouldn’t belong to an outsider. As anonymous threats escalate, Nick is protective of Allison, and she finds herself falling for the handsome carpenter. But when she discovers her grandmother’s death may not have been accidental, Allison must face the truth that someone wants her gone…permanently.

Where Secrets Sleep is an easy-to-read suspense story that takes place in Amish country, although the main character Allison Standish is an Englisher.

Allison is an interior decorator who decides to leave her profession after catching her boss getting cozy with her boyfriend.  As luck would have it, she has also recently inherited the Blackburn House, which is a mansion filled with all kinds of shops and was owned by her Amish grandmother whom she never actually knew.  There was a condition that came with the inheritance that stated that Allison would have to run the mansion for an entire year with a profit before it would actually become hers.  If she failed, the house would be given to her cousin instead.  Of course, thinking this would not be such an unfathomable task, Allison is planning to sell the mansion after her year is up.  But, she begins to encounter many strange events .   There is reason to believe that maybe her grandmother’s death was not an accident, and  that some people are a little less than pleased about Allison’s inheritance.   There is also a little romance in the mix as well, as Allison becomes close to one of her shop owners.  So, there is a little bit of everything for the reader to enjoy.

I thought this was an enjoyable way to spend a couple hours on a lazy Saturday afternoon.  The story, although a bit predictable, was entertaining and it held my interest.   I think that anyone who enjoys reading Amish fiction would find Where Secrets Sleep to be a  a story that they will appreciate as well.

I would like to thank Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to review this book.

Rating: 4 out of 5

This title is available from HQN Books.  You can buy it here or here in e-format.  This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Guest Review: Lydia’s Hope by Marta Perry

Posted September 26, 2013 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

15808773Tina’s review of Lydia’s Hope by Marta Perry.

Three Amish sisters, separated when very young, know nothing about one another—until a long-held secret is revealed.

With no memory of her birth parents, or the tragic accident that took their lives, Lydia Beachy has always been grateful for the aunt and uncle who took her in and raised her as their own. Now a married woman with two sons, Lydia finds her life turned upside down when she discovers that she has two younger sisters: Susanna, who was adopted by an Amish family in another community, and Chloe, who was raised by their grandmother among the Englisch.

Angry and confused, Lydia first seeks out Susanna but stops short of telling her the truth. To track down Chloe, she enlists the help of a neighbor who has spent some years in the Englisch world. Meanwhile, Lydia’s husband, Adam, is keeping a secret of his own. Lydia yearns to be united with the sisters she has never known, but will revealing herself to them tear their lives apart…or enrich them beyond all imagining?

I am a HUGE fan of Marta Perry already, so when I got the chance to review this book for the ladies @ Book Binge, I was delighted. I have read many books by this author and am always pleased with her writing style and the fact that her characters always seem to draw you in like part of the family. Her stories are always so heartwarming, and have just the right amount of suspense to keep you engrossed.

Lydia’s Hope is the first book in The Lost Sisters of Pleasant Valley series. It is the story of how one Amish woman’s life is turned upside down after a secret is exposed, and the effects that this secret brings to her relationship with her husband, her family and even her community. It is about overcoming the shock of betrayal and finding the path back to redemption and understanding.

Lydia Beachy was involved in a tragic car accident when she was only five years old. This accident claimed the life of both her parents and robbed her of any memory of her life prior to it. She has been adopted and raised by her Aunt and Uncle, and it currently married to Adam and is raising a family of her own. One day her aunt accidentally mentions two sisters that Lydia has no idea of their existence. She is stunned by this discovery, and hurt that the entire Amish community could keep this knowledge from her. This is the tale her struggle to accept the idea of having siblings that she cannot remember, and of her quest to find them.

I totally enjoyed this book. I read it very quickly and can’t wait to read the rest of the series. For inspirational Amish fiction, Marta Perry is a definite top pick.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

This title is available from Berkley Trade.  You can buy it here or here in e-format.  This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Guest Review: Vanish In Plain Sight by Marta Perry

Posted July 21, 2011 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Since she was a little girl, Marisa Angelo has been haunted by the image of her mother walking away, suitcase in hand, to return to her Amish roots.  Marisa and her “Englischer” father never saw or heard from her again. Now Marisa has received a shocking call from police. Her mother’s bloodstained suitcase was found hidden inside the wall of a Pennsylvania Dutch farmhouse.

Desperate for answers, Marisa heads to Lancaster County. But no one—not the police or Marisa’s tight-lipped Amish relatives—can explain what happened to her mother.  Only one man is as determined as Marisa to unravel the mystery—Link Morgan, the handsome ex-military loner who found the suitcase in the house he inherited from his uncle. Now both Link’s and Marisa’s family members are implicated in the decades-old disappearance.
The secret lies somewhere in the quaint Amish settlement. But someone will do anything to ensure the truth remains hidden forever.
The is the second novel in the Amish Suspense series Ms Perry recently began and like the first novel, Murder on Plain Sight, this story brings the Amish Traditions and culture in direct clash with the outside world characterized as “English.”  Link Morgan, brother of one of the main characters in the first novel, has now found an old suitcase that is fully packed and looks as if someone was ready to travel.  When the case was opened it was discovered that it was the suitcase of Barbara Angelo, a woman who had left the Amish faith to marry Russell Angelo and to live in the English world.  It is well-known that she left her husband and left behind her child, a daughter her friends admit she felt to be her greatest delight.  Now that same daughter is grown and will leave no stone unturned to discover not only more about why her mother left but her present whereabouts.  Only one problem:  the people she knew best, her Amish relatives and friends, are totally unwilling to speak with her or share anything they remember about her mother as a person or why she might have left home and family.
This is another wonderful and complicated Marta Perry creation complete with loving and family-oriented people, a deep sense of the value of friends and loved ones, as well as individuals who seem to be a bit “off” in the negative sense.  There is also the sad and poignant figure of Link Morgan who has recently returned from Iraq and a long convalescence after severe war wounds.  His deep sense of failure in keeping his war buddies alive permeates his relationships with his family and his new friendship with Marisa Angelo, yet he is thrown together with her repeatedly because of their mutual need to solve the mystery of her mother’s suitcase and disappearance.  Link’s mother made a significant appearance in the first novel and she is still that warm and caring mother-figure that inspired the characters in both stories to seek truth as well as find their true selves in the searching.  There are clues throughout this book that point one way or another and the reader will not easily discern the solution of the mystery.  This is not an erotic tale but it is filled with the kind of loving that inspires everyone to see the value in all kinds of relationships from the initial loving touch of a mother to the deep and abiding friendships that enrich anyone’s life who is privileged to be blessed with such.
Link and Marissa have continuing difficulties largely because he is constantly fighting his attraction to her and because her persistence is an on-going irritation to him.  He has his goals and his life course set before him, but as she drags him away from his tasks to explore solutions to the mystery, he must face the long-term effects that his determination to leave home and family behind.  While his mother keeps her counsel most of the time, Link’s brother is not so reticent and he is chafed and rubbed raw emotionally, little realizing that he is doing all this to himself. 
This is one of those kinds of reads that merges romance with mystery and brings the best of both to the reader.  Ms Perry’s novels are always studies in the clashes of culture, the inner workings of people’s minds and feelings, and the waxing and waning of relationships.  It is so true in this story.  It is the kind of book that inspires even as it meets head-on many of the prejudices we “English” have about the Amish and their life.  As one who grew up in surroundings rich in the Amish influences of Eastern Pennsylvania, Ms Perry has brought her knowledge as well as her admiration of the Amish ways to bear in her stories.  Readers would do well to pay attention as she gives readers the opportunities to know better these unique and delightful people, from their way of speaking to their sense of community that goes so far beyond what most Americans have ever experienced.
This was another very satisfying reading experience for me and I found I enjoyed that sense of connection with the first novel in this series.  While both are stand alone stories, they compliment each other.  I also liked the fact that the Morgans figured prominently in both books.  They are people I would have liked to know in real life.  The culmination of Link and Marissa’s attraction was somewhat speedy at the end of the book, but I have the feeling that readers will be able to follow their story as it unfolds in coming books in the series.

I give this novel a 4.5 out of 5.

You can read more from Judith at Dr J’s Book Place
This book is available from HQN Books. You can buy it here or here in e-format.