Tag Archives: Tracie Peterson

Book Review: House of Secrets

12 Mar

They vowed, as children, to be silent…

When her father orchestrates a surprise trip to the summer house of her childhood, Bailee Cooper is unprepared for what follows. What is intended to be a happy reunion for Bailee and her sisters quickly becomes shrouded by memories from the past.

Together again, the three sisters sift through their recollections of fifteen years ago…of an ill mother, and of their father making a desperate choice. One sister believes their silence must end and the truth be revealed. But they soon come to wonder if they can trust their memories.

Mark Delahunt arrives in the wake of this emotional turmoil. Determined to win Bailee’s affection, Mark becomes a strong fortress for her in this time of confusion, and what was once a tentative promise begins to take root and grow. Caught between the past and an uncertain future, can Bailee let God guide her to healing . . . or will she risk losing the chance to embrace love?

 

Excerpt

 

Tracie Peterson is the award-winning author of over eighty novels, both historical and contemporary. Her avid research resonates in her stories, as seen in her bestselling Heirs of Montana, and Alaskan Quest series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana. Visit Tracie’s Web site at www.traciepeterson.com and her blog at www.writespassage.blogspot.com.

 

 

My Impressions:

House of Secrets is the first contemporary novel by Tracie Peterson that I have read.  But because of this reading experience, it certainly will not be the last. Peterson takes a normally taboo subject (mental illness), at least in Christian fiction, and handles it realistically.  There is no preachiness in this novel, or a call to get right.  Her portrayal of the heartbreak of dealing with a mentally ill loved one and the effects on the family is right on.

Bailee Cooper is the oldest daughter of a very dysfunctional family.  She and her three sisters believe they witnessed the murder of their mother at the hands of their father.  Fifteen years later, they are back at the summer house that was the scene of their mother’s death.  They are determined to uncover the secrets that have shadowed their family all their lives.

The characters in House of Secrets are well developed.  They deal with anger, guilt and shame  — emotions that have prevented them from pursing normal relationships.  Their actions to cover up or explain away circumstances also ring true. And their reactions to the truth behind the secrets are often hard to take, but seem very realistic.  The guilt Bailee feels and the blame that is directed towards her is wrenching.  But don’t worry, Peterson writes an ending that is very satisfying.

If you want an honest portrayal of a difficult problem that is handled with grace and compassion, then pick up House of Secrets.

Highly Recommended.

 

(I received House of Secrets from Bethany in return for an honest review.  The opinions expressed are mine alone.)

 

Book Review: To Have And To Hold

17 Dec

When Audrey Cunningham’s father proposes that they move to Bridal Veil Island, where he grew up, she agrees, thinking this will help keep him sober and close to God. But they arrive to find wealthy investors buying up land to build a grand resort on the secluded island–and they want the Cunninghams’ acreage.

Contractor Marshall Graham can’t imagine why the former drinking buddy of his deceased father would beckon him to Bridal Veil Island. And when Boyd Cunningham asks him to watch over Audrey, Marshall is even more confused. He has no desire to be saddled with caring for this fiery young woman who is openly hostile toward him. But when Audrey seems to be falling for another man–one who has two little girls Audrey adores–Marshall realizes she holds more of his heart than he realized. Which man will Audrey choose? And can she hold on to her ancestral property in the face of overwhelming odds?

 

Tracie Peterson is the award-winning author of over eighty novels, both historical and contemporary. Her avid research resonates in her stories, as seen in her bestselling Heirs of Montana, and Alaskan Quest series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana. Visit Tracie’s Web site at www.traciepeterson.com and her blog atwww.writespassage.blogspot.com.

Judith Miller is an award-winning author whose avid research and love for history are reflected in her novels, two of which have placed in the CBA top ten lists. In addition to her writing, Judy is a certified legal assistant. Judy makes her home in Topeka, Kansas. Visit her Web site at www.judithmccoymiller.com.

 

 

My Impressions:

To Have And To Hold is the first book in the Bridal Veil Island series, a series set on the fictitious island off the Georgia coast during the latter years of the 19th century.  Bridal Veil Island is the site of new construction of a club for the wealthy of America, a la Jekyll Island.   Audrey Cunningham and her father Boyd are the last remaining residents on the island when the investors begin their construction. Faced with losing their home, Bridal Fair, for delinquent taxes, the Cunningham’s take in the supervisors of the construction as boarders in order to save their family home.

I enjoyed this historical romance set amid the live oaks and Spanish moss of the Georgia coastal islands.  The characters are well developed and very likable.   I especially liked the irascible Aunt Thora and her twisting interpretation of scripture and her distrust of yankees.  The realistic plot includes many poignant moments and of course the path of true love is never without obstacles.  There is even some suspense when things at the construction site start to go wrong and sabotage is suspected.  There is no doubt about the faith element that runs through the story, yet it is never preachy.

All in all, if you like historical romance, I believe you will enjoy To Have And To Hold.

Recommended.

(I received To Have And To Hold from Bethany House Publishers in return for a review.  The opinions expressed are mine alone.)