Saturday, January 30, 2016

Review + GIVEAWAY: Beyond the Silence


Beyond the Silence
By Tracie Peterson, Kimberley Woodhouse
Bethany House, 2016


Summary

The shadows over this olive grove hide more than just the truth.

Lillian Porter has always wanted to fulfill her mother's dream of going west, so when she hears about a nanny position in Angels Camp, California, she defies her grandfather and takes a chance on a new future. But she quickly wonders if she made the right choice. Murky rumors swirl around Woodward Colton, her new employer, but the gossip doesn't match the man Lillian comes to know.

Still, something dark did happen in the family's past. Lillian's seven-year-old charge hasn't spoken in over a year. Gently, Lillian tries to coax him out of his shell, hoping he'll one day feel safe enough to share what scared him. But the Colton olive farm is no longer a safe place. Lillian encounters suspicious characters on their land and mysterious damage done to the farm. When the housekeeper is brutally attacked, the town once again suspects the worst. Will discovering the truth help Lillian clear the name of the man she has come to love---or will it endanger her even more?
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Tracie Peterson is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than 100 novels. Tracie also teaches writing workshops at a variety of conferences on subjects such as inspirational romance and historical research. She and her family live in Montana. Connect with Tracie: website, Facebook

Kimberley Woodhouse is a multipublished author of fiction and nonfiction. A popular speaker/teacher, she's shared her theme of Joy Through Trials with over 150,000 people at more than a thousand venues across the country. She lives, writes, and homeschools with her husband of twenty-plus years and their two awesome teens live in Colorado. Connect with Kimberley: website, Twitter, Facebook


My thoughts

I am impressed with this collaboration between Tracie Peterson and Kimberley Woodhouse. I’ve read several novels by Tracie and enjoy her style. Kimberly is known for her excellent suspense, and while I don’t read a lot of this genre, I wanted to try this book because of the authors. Rich in characterization, setting, suspense and plot, the combined skill set that Tracie and Kimberly bring to the table makes this a very entertaining and compelling read.


California olive grove
Woody and Lillian drew me to them immediately. The community of Angels Camp, California was not kind to Woody, and as a result of people’s blindness to his innocence, Woody was worn down, vulnerable, and just plain tired. And Lillian . . . Well, she was exactly what he and his son, Jimmy, needed. Lillian had a feistiness about her that I loved, but more importantly, she had the ability to look beyond appearances and she refused to listen to gossip.

Woody and Lillian were empathetic characters; they touched my heart in a personal way. And the same can be said for a few secondary characters as well – such as the housekeeper, Mrs. Goodman, and 7-year-old Jimmy, who is at the heart of this story. Another touching part was the welcoming acceptance and befriending of the sweet, gentle Harry, childlike in a grown-up body. I couldn’t get Harry off my mind, and like Lillian, wondered “How many people missed out on knowing kind souls because someone else labeled them as simpleminded?”

Beyond the Silence has a strong spiritual theme, which I greatly appreciated in a time when many Christian fiction stories fall short in this area. There’s a contrast in words, between Jimmy’s self-imposed silence after witnessing something no child should ever see, and that of the townspeople’s quick judgement, brash condemnation and gossip. The story’s much-needed message about the power of our words – for good or evil, to bless or hurt – gives much to think about.

I thought that Mark, one of my fellow bloggers whose reviews always command my respect, summed it up perfectly and I wanted to share his comment that I heartily agree with:  “Great job, ladies, on a book that personifies what Christian fiction should be, and what Christian suspense should be.” (Click on this link to see Mark’s review at Thoughts of a Sojourner)

Recommended.

Thank you to Litfuse Publicity for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.


Litfuse landing page:


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GIVEAWAY

WINNER:

Congratulations to Marilyn on winning a copy of Beyond the Silence. However, the e-mail you provided did not work, so please contact me by 2/8 or I will need to draw another winner.

Are you a suspense fan? Do you like books that are co-written? Fan of Tracie and/or Kimberly’s books? To enter the drawing for Beyond the Silence, just leave a comment, then click on this Facebook link and share about the giveaway ("likes" to my FB page are also very much appreciated).

BE SURE to leave your name and your email address in a safe format - [at] and [dot] - for the drawing. E-mail required for entry. Contest ends at midnight PST on Friday, February 5. Winner will be chosen by Random.org and contacted by e-mail.

Eligibility: US residents



34 comments:

  1. I do enjoy books that are co-written. And Tracie is one of my favorite authors. I can't wait to read this one. Hoping to win!!!!!
    kathrynlvoss(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Hi Kate, and best wishes! I don't know how two authors manage to co-write a book, but the effort was very successful here. With Kimberley's involvement, I knew there would be some suspense, but it wasn't too scary for me and the narrative flowed smoothly. Thanks for visiting, Kate.

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  2. Tracie Peterson is one of my daughter's favorite authors and we both really like suspense. Thanks for the opportunity to win. steveandellengray(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    Replies
    1. You're very welcome - and thanks for visiting, Ellen. I like character-driven stories, which usually doesn't apply to suspense, but this was an exception. Glad your daughter enjoys Tracie so much. I've never been disappointed in her writing. Best wishes, Ellen!

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  3. I am a suspense fan. I haven't read many co -written books so really have no valid opinion! Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Anne, I love a good murder mystery, but not necessarily suspense. However, this book wasn't too scary and I really enjoyed it. Be sure to leave your email address for the drawing - and thanks for visiting.

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  4. This giveaway is great ,I love Tracie Peterson books and I know this one with Kimberly Woodhouse is even greater.
    Elmamc56(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. It really is a good book, Elma - a nice blend of two different styles. Don't really know how they did it! Thanks for visiting today.

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  5. Sounds like a great book Carole. I have read a few by Tracey Peterson and they were good! Haven't had the chance to read any by Kimberley Woodhouse yet.

    Shared :-)

    amylsmith AT bledsoe DOT net

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    1. I think you'll really like this one, Amy. Not too scary, just excellent storytelling.

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  6. Oh, this one looks so good. Tracie has been a long time favorite of my, but I haven't read anything by Kimberly. I do enjoy co-written books. I would love to know how that process works. Thank you for offering this giveaway.

    Stephanie C.
    grumpysmurf817(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    Replies
    1. Stephanie, I can't imagine how two authors write a story that flows as seamless as this. I don't read much suspense, so I was pleased at Kimberley's contribution. I'm pretty sure you'll enjoy Beyond the Silence.

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  7. What a team for this new book. Definitely one I would enjoy. Thank for the giveaway.

    FaithhopeAThotmailDOTcom

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    1. They do make a good team, Marilyn, and their strengths are evident. Best wishes in the giveaway.

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    2. Marilyn, you are the winner of Beyond the Silence. However, the e-mail you listed did not work. If you see this, please respond by 2/8 or I will have to draw another winner. Thanks!

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  8. My daughter and I are big fans of Tracie Peterson, but I would like to see how this book turns out with the help and input of a writer new to me, Kimberley Woodhouse. I hope I win. Good luck everyone.

    shared

    princessdebbie1_2000 at yahoo dot com

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing, Debbie. Tracie & Kimberley's combined efforts are so good that I want to read the previous book they co-wrote. I don't think you will be disappointed.

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  9. This sounds like a great suspense and romance story. I'd love to be in on the drawing.

    wakim98 at yahoo dot com Kim

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    1. I think this is a book you would really enjoy, Kim. Great storytelling and characterization, suspense without being over the top, and strong spiritual themes. Best wishes in the drawing!

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  10. I have read just about all of Tracie,s books...she is a great writer...I love reading Christian fiction...it's all I read...
    sunnygarden7 at aol dot com
    Judy

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    1. Judy, I used to read a lot of general market books that were clean, but now I primarily read Christian fiction. Tracie has written tons of books, so you're obviously a devoted fan. I keep coming back to her books. And I'm pretty sure you will enjoy Beyond the Silence. Thanks for entering, Judy.

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  11. I'm not sure how two authors write a book. Do they argue on what happens next or want to change what the other has written to something else happening ? I do enjoy books written by two authors and I'll leave the mystery of how they do it to them : ) I love a great well written suspense . I just finished the Seattle Brides series but have never read a book by the other author. I am excited to see this featured and hope to read it soon. Sharing on facebook now !
    Deanne P.
    Cnnamongirl at aol dot com

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing, Deanne. I'm with you about the co-authoring thing. Can't imagine how they do it, but their respective strengths are evident and the storyline is seamless. Good luck in the drawing, Deanne!

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  12. Tracie Peterson's books never let you down. They are all great! I would love to win this one. d[dot]brookmyer[at]yahoo[dot]com

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    1. "Tracie Peterson's books never let you down" . . . Well said, Donna! I'm sure you will enjoy Beyond the Silence also.

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  13. I love Tracie's books. This one looks great.
    Thereadmaster(at)me(dot)com

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  14. Tracie is my daughter's favorite author. She would love for me to win this book for her! :) p.s. shared on my Cheryl Barker, Writer Facebook page

    ckbarker at gmail dot com

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  15. I love Tracie's books!

    kleehar[at]gmail[dot]com

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  16. I have always been a fan of Tracie Peterson, I've never read anything by her I didn't love. I like suspense, co-writers are good especially if it has a familiar author, then I'm more apt to read the other author's books. I haven't read anything by Kimberly and I look forward to this book.
    karenskrayons(at)gmail(dot)com

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  17. This sounds like a great book and you know I love suspense. I shared.
    eppersonkatrina(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  18. I love suspense books. Books that re cowritten are great because you get to see the styles of both writers. Tracie and Kimberly are both new authors to me. This book sounds like a real page turner that I would love to read. Thanks for the chance.
    marypopmom (at) yahoo (dot) com
    Merry

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  19. I can't think of any that I have read where two have written a book but I'm sure I have. I always enjoy Tracie Peterson's books and look forward to reading Kimberly's work.
    pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

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  20. This books sounds fascinating to me. Thanks so much for sharing this at Booknificent Thursday!
    Tina

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