“We understand what we want to understand.” Leaving a life of privilege to strike out on her own, Lauren Durough breaks with convention and her family’s expectations by choosing a state college over Stanford and earning her own income over accepting her ample monthly allowance. She takes a part-time job from 83-year-old librarian Abigail Boyles, who asks Lauren to transcribe the journal entries of her ancestor Mercy Hayworth, a victim of the Salem witch trials. Almost immediately, Lauren finds herself drawn to this girl who lived and died four centuries ago. As the fervor around the witch accusations increases, Mercy becomes trapped in the worldview of the day, unable to fight the overwhelming influence of snap judgments and superstition, and Lauren realizes that the secrets of Mercy’s story extend beyond the pages of her diary, living on in the mysterious, embittered Abigail. The strength of her affinity with Mercy forces Lauren to take a startling new look at her own life, including her relationships with Abigail, her college roommate, and a young man named Raul. But on the way to the truth, will Lauren find herself playing the helpless defendant or the misguided judge? Can she break free from her own perceptions and see who she really is?
When her black sheep brother disappears, Amanda Janvier eagerly takes in her sixteen year-old niece Tally. The girl is practically an orphan: motherless, and living with a father who raises Tally wherever he lands– in a Buick, a pizza joint, a horse farm–and regularly takes off on wild schemes. Amanda envisions that she, her husband Neil, and their two teenagers can offer the girl stability and a shot at a “normal” life, even though their own storybook lives are about to crumble. Seventeen-year-old Chase Janvier hasn’t seen his cousin in years, and other than a vague curiosity about her strange life, he doesn’t expect her arrival will affect him much–or interfere with his growing, disturbing interest in a long-ago house fire that plagues his dreams unbeknownst to anyone else. Tally and Chase bond as they interview two Holocaust survivors for a sociology project, and become startlingly aware that the whole family is grappling with hidden secrets, with the echoes of the past, and with the realization that ignoring tragic situations won’t make them go away. Will Tally’s presence blow apart their carefully-constructed world, knocking down the illusion of the white picket fence and reveal a hidden past that could destroy them all–or can she help them find the truth without losing each other? From the Trade Paperback edition.
In this new novel by critically acclaimed author Susan Meissner, readers will again applaud the storytelling efforts that last year resulted in the authors previous book, A Window to the World, being named by Booklist Magazine as one of the top ten Christian novels of 2005. Alexa Pooles older sister, Rebecca, has lived at the Falkman Residential Center since an accident left her mentally compromisedvulnerable, innocent. Now, 17 years later, she has vanished. As Alexa searches for Rebecca, disturbing questions surface. Why did the car that Rebecca was riding in swerve off the road killing her college friend, Leanne McNeil? And what about the mysterious check for $50,000 found in Rebeccas room signed by her friends father, Gavin McNeil?
The author of A Bridge Across the Ocean and The Last Year of the War journeys from the present day to World War II England, as two sisters are separated by the chaos of wartime... Current day, Oxford, England. Young American scholar Kendra Van Zant, eager to pursue her vision of a perfect life, interviews Isabel McFarland just when the elderly woman is ready to give up secrets about the war that she has kept for decades...beginning with who she really is. What Kendra receives from Isabel is both a gift and a burden—one that will test her convictions and her heart. 1940s, England. As Hitler wages an unprecedented war against London’s civilian population, hundreds of thousands of children are evacuated to foster homes in the rural countryside. But even as fifteen-year-old Emmy Downtree and her much younger sister Julia find refuge in a charming Cotswold cottage, Emmy’s burning ambition to return to the city and apprentice with a fashion designer pits her against Julia’s profound need for her sister’s presence. Acting at cross purposes just as the Luftwaffe rains down its terrible destruction, the sisters are cruelly separated, and their lives are transformed...
A beautiful scarf connects two women touched by tragedy in this compelling, emotional novel from the author of As Bright as Heaven and The Last Year of the War. September 1911. On Ellis Island in New York Harbor, nurse Clara Wood cannot face returning to Manhattan, where the man she loved fell to his death in the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire. Then, while caring for a fevered immigrant whose own loss mirrors hers, she becomes intrigued by a name embroidered onto the scarf he carries...and finds herself caught in a dilemma that compels her to confront the truth about the assumptions she’s made. What she learns could devastate her—or free her. September 2011. On Manhattan’s Upper West Side, widow Taryn Michaels has convinced herself that she is living fully, working in a charming specialty fabric store and raising her daughter alone. Then a long-lost photograph appears in a national magazine, and she is forced to relive the terrible day her husband died in the collapse of the World Trade Towers...the same day a stranger reached out and saved her. But a chance reconnection and a century-old scarf may open Taryn’s eyes to the larger forces at work in her life. “[Meissner] creates two sympathetic, relatable characters that readers will applaud. Touching and inspirational.”—Kirkus Reviews
A house shrouded in time. A line of women with a heritage of loss. As a young bride, Susannah Page was rumored to be a Civil War spy for the North, a traitor to her Virginian roots. Her great-granddaughter Adelaide, the current matriarch of Holly Oak, doesn’t believe that Susannah’s ghost haunts the antebellum mansion looking for a pardon, but rather the house itself bears a grudge toward its tragic past. When Marielle Bishop marries into the family and is transplanted from the arid west to her husband’s home, it isn’t long before she is led to believe that the house she just settled into brings misfortune to the women who live there. With Adelaide’s richly peppered superstitions and deep family roots at stake, Marielle must sort out the truth about Susannah Page and Holly Oak— and make peace with the sacrifices she has made for love.
What options does a Christian woman have after she's brutally assaulted by a stranger one night...and becomes pregnant? That's the heartrending situation Claire Holland faces. Happily married and the mother of two when she is attacked, Claire begins an incredible journey on the painful pathway to trusting God "in all things." When Claire's husband, Dan, confesses he could never become a father to the expected child, Claire's decision to put the baby up for adoption creates a sense of tremendous loss for Claire...and for her 12-year-old daughter, Kate. Then, 16 years later, the relinquished child re-enters the lives of the Holland family, with unexpected consequences. This wonderful and warm first novel isn't a "love story....but a "life story, presenting the twin themes of learning to trust God in tragic circumstances and reaping the rewards that eventually come with sacrificial loving.
Megan Diamond retreats back into her shell when tragedy strikes, taking her best friend Jen away from her, but as the years pass, Megan learns that it is better to risk getting hurt by those she loves than to close her heart off forever.
Recommended for readers of Sarah Dunant, this new novel about disillusionment, love, and family takes readers from California to the piazzas of Florence, plunging them into a fascinating world of art and history.