Let me start out by saying that this is book #1 in this new series, and it is definitely the start of something good (but only the start). Here we have some amazing storylines that start to intersect as we go along... Grace is from a nice Amish family, living a nice Amish life when weird things start happening. Mom can't sleep at night and wanders around outside, Dad doesn't want to discuss it, Grandma seems to know more than she is letting on... but not enough. Then one night Grace's world is turned upside down. Her mother is gone and no one knows why. Can her family function without mom? Can they survive the scrutiny of the Amish community? What is the deal with Heather who is coming to stay with an Amish family? The interesting thing about "The Secret" is that even though the big secret is revealed before the book is over it definitely asks more questions than it answers. This book is not about resolution, it is about questions... so don't read it if you are not planning on reading the rest of the series! I will say that it is worth the read and Beverly Lewis is a master at crafting characters and storylines - so dive into the mystery that is the Amish community!
If you would like a chance at winning a copy of "The Secret" by Beverly Lewis then leave me a comment telling me what intrigues you most about the Amish community. Be sure to leave your email address as I will stop entering people that don't include it so I can reach you. Good luck!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Not until her own children were well into middle school did Bev seek to publish her work, first in magazines such as Highlights for Children, Dolphin Log, and Guideposts for Kids. Her first book followed in 1993—Mountain Bikes and Garbanzo Beans—presently retitled Big Bad Beans (book #22 in the popular CUL-DE-SAC KIDS series of chapter books—see list of Bev's children's books).
Beverly's first venture into adult fiction is the best-selling trilogy, THE HERITAGE OF LANCASTER COUNTY, including The Shunning, a suspenseful saga of Katie Lapp, a young Amish woman drawn to the modern world by secrets from her past. The book is loosely based on the author's maternal grandmother, Ada Ranck Buchwalter, who left her Old Order Mennonite upbringing to marry a Bible College student. One Amish-country newspaper claimed Beverly's work to be "a primer on Lancaster County folklore" and offers "an insider's view of Amish life."
Booksellers across the country, and around the world, have spread the word of Bev's tender tales of Plain country life. A clerk in a Virginia bookstore wrote, "Beverly's books have a compelling freshness and spark. You just don't run across writing like that every day. I hope she'll keep writing stories about the Plain people for a long, long time."
A member of the National League of American Pen Women, as well as a Distinguished Alumnus of Evangel University, Lewis has written over 80 books for children, youth, and adults, many of them award-winning. She and her husband, David, make their home in Colorado, where they enjoy hiking, biking, and playing with their three grandchildren. They are also avid musicians and fiction "book worms."
ABOUT THE BOOK
In the seemingly ordinary Amish home of Grace Byler, secrets abound. Why does her mother weep in the night? Why does her father refuse to admit something is dreadfully wrong? Then, in one startling moment, everything Grace assumed she knew is shattered.
Her mother's disappearance leaves Grace reeling and unable to keep her betrothal promise to her long-time beau. Left to pick up the pieces of her life, Grace questions all she has been taught about love, family, and commitment.
Heather Nelson is an English grad student, stunned by a doctor's diagnosis. Surely fate would not allow her father to lose his only daughter after the death of his wife a few years before. In denial and telling no one she is terminally ill, Heather travels to Lancaster County-- the last place she and her mother had visited together.
Will Heather find healing for body and spirit? As the lives of four wounded souls begin to weave together like an Amish patchwork quilt, they each discover missing pieces of their life puzzles--and glimpse the merciful and loving hand of God.
If you would like to read the first chapter of The Secret, go HERE