Monday, February 6, 2012

Return To Grace-Karen Harper

Return To Grace

Karen Harper

Mira, Feb 21 2012, $14.95

ISBN: 9780778313236

In Home Valley, Ohio, heartbroken by Seth Lantz’s infidelity leading to his marrying pregnant Lena Miller, Hannah Esh left her Amish home to become a singer. Three years later, her worldly Englishe friends (Liz Bartoli, Tiffany Miles, Mike Swanson and Kevin Miles) have a Halloween boos and booze party at the Oakridge Road Amish Graveyard near where Hannah used to live. Their irreverence towards the dead disturbs Hannah. Shots are fired with Tiffany hit in the shoulder, Mike in the head and Hannah in the wrist. Hannah calls 911.

Seth riding home hears the shots and screams. He arrives at the cemetery where Hannah fled with shame and guilt sits in shock. He also has issues as the shooter destroyed the marker of his late wife Lena. Hannah’s parents, Bishop and Mrs. Esh arrive while the emergency vehicle comes to take the victims to the hospital. FBI agent Linc Armstrong leads the official investigation into what seems like a crime of hate. Hannah serves as the tie between the Fed’s Englishe roots and her Amish community as she wants to prove her worthiness to herself and her family. Single dad Seth, who never stopped loving, Hannah, prays for a second chance.

The latest Home Valley Amish romance (see Fall From Pride) is a wonderful character driven suspense as the heroine must choose between two cultures and potential loves; her dilemmas that provide insight into the Amish lifestyle are at the heart of the storyline. The investigation is superb as a killer observes the inquiry especially Hannah’s role, but it is the overall heroine’s tragic homecoming that makes for an engaging thriller.

Harriet Klausner

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