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A Sound Among the Trees
WaterBrook Press / 2011 / Paperback
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A house with a turbulent Civil War history becomes home to a new bride and stepmother in Susan Meissner's richly absorbing tale of a line of women stuck living in patterns of regret.
For 150 years, Holly Oak, a spacious Southern home, has stood the test of time and wills in historic Fredericksburg with Civil War scars to prove it. Marielle Bishop marries into the family with multi-generational ties to the home, leaving behind her independence and her love of Arizona's deserts to move to Holly Oak to become a wife and stepmother. But it isn't long before Marielle is led to believe that the house she just settled into brings trouble and misfortune to all the women who live there. Local folklore has it that Susannah Page, a Yankee spy who housed Union soldiers, haunts Holly Oak because she's longing for pardon. When Susannah's great-granddaughter Adelaide McClane tells her that the house is "stuck" because of it's tumultuous past, Marielle is determined to get past the rumors and uncover the secrets that are buried within its walls. With Adelaide's richly peppered superstitions and deep family roots at stake, Marielle must carve her new life out carefully as she sorts out the truth and makes peace with the sacrifices she has made for love.
A house shrouded in time.
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, doesnt believe that Susannahs 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 husbands home, it isnt long before she is led to believe that the house she just settled into brings misfortune to the women who live there.
With Adelaides 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.
Award-winning writer Susan Meissner is a multi-published author, speaker and workshop leader with a background in community journalism. Her novels include The Shape of Mercy, named by Publishers Weekly as one of the Best Books of 2008. She is a pastors wife and a mother of four. When she's not writing, Susan directs the Small Groups and Connection Ministries program at her San Diego church.
A woman marries into a Southern family with a dark past in this mystery about love and loss. Marielle Bishop meets her future husband, Carson, online and moves to the steamy Virginia hills from her home in the arid Phoenix desert. She soon learns that the familys stately mansion, Holly Oak, houses more than just her new family. Ever since the Civil War, the Bishop family has been afflicted with hardship and strifewith many locals blaming their troubles on the estates alleged haunting. Suspicious herself, Marielle decides to investigate Susannah Pagethe familys former matriarch and spy during the Civil Warto figure out why her spirit refuses to leave the property. Meissner (The Shape of Mercy) delivers a delightful page-turner that will surely enthrall readers from beginning to end. The antebellum details, lively characters, and overlapping dramas particularly will excite history buffs and romance fans. (Oct.) Copyright 2011 Reed Business Information.
Praise for A Sound Among the Trees
"Meissner delivers a delightful page-turner that will surely enthrall readers from beginning to end. The antebellum details, lively characters, and overlapping dramas particularly will excite history buffs and romance fans." - Publishers Weekly, starred review
"In A Sound Among the Trees, author Meissner transports readers to another time and place to weave her lyrical tale of love, loss, forgiveness, and letting go. Her beautifully drawn characters are flawed yet likable, their courage and resilience echoing in the halls of Holly Oak for generations. A surprising conclusion and startling redemption make this book a page-turner, but the settingthe beautiful old Holly Oak and all of its ghostsis what will seep into the readers bones, making A Sound Among the Trees a book you dont want to put down.
Karen White, New York Times best-selling author of The Beach Trees
"My eyes welled up more than once! And I thought it especially fitting that, having already shown us the shape of mercy in a previous novel, Susan Meissner is now showing us the many shapes of love. A Sound Among the Trees is a hauntingly lyrical book that will make you believe a house can indeed have a memory…and maybe a heart. A beautiful story of love, loss, and sacrifice, and of the bonds that connect us through time."
Susanna Kearsley, New York Times best-selling author of The Winter Sea
"I have a dozen things to do (like sleep!), but here I huddle through the night, turning pages, mesmerized by yet another Susan Meissner novel. How does Susan create characters that stay with me long after I close the book? How does she transport a reader so easily to a mansion in the South, in this century, bringing one familys challenge of the Civil War to speak to contemporary times? How does she address the emotions and memories that hold us hostage with such grace? How do her turns of phrase bring tears unbidden to my eyes? I keep reading, knowing Ill discover a fascinating story and hoping Ill infuse some of the skill and craft that Susan weaves to make it. A Sound Among the Trees is one more exceptional novel from a world-class storyteller. Jodi Picoult, make room at the top."
Jane Kirkpatrick, award-winning author of The Daughters Walk
"A Sound Among the Trees is another Meissner masterpiece filled with well-shaped characters, a compelling plot, and haunting questions: are our memories reliable enough to grow us, or do we cling to them as an excuse not to live? Meissner stunned me as she skillfully grappled with those mysteries. I left the book resolved to live joyfully in the sacredness of today."
Mary DeMuth, author of The Muir House
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