Anathema - eBook  -     By: Colleen Coble
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Anathema - eBook

Thomas Nelson / 2008 / ePub

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Product Description

Hannah Swartz is betrothed to Noah Whetstone, but her heart belongs to Reece O'Connor, an Englischer. After the death of her parents, she flees her Amish community with Reece, only to learn that he's not quite the man she believed him to be.

After four years of marriage and the loss of her baby, Hannah leaves Reece to reinvent her life. She never gave up on finding her parents' murderer, and when her family members are threatened, she believes Reece will stop at nothing to get back at her for leaving him. He even claims that their daughter is still alive. Will Hannah be able to save her family and herself from the person who has held a grudge against them for decades?

Product Information

Format: DRM Protected ePub
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2008
ISBN: 9781418566548
ISBN-13: 9781418566548
Availability: In Stock

Publisher's Description

When Hannah refuses to forgive a terrible sin she becomes anathema--shunned. But the real question is, can she forgive herself?

Visitors come to Parke County, Indiana to enjoy the lush farms, to buy the Amish quilts, and to experience the peaceful ways of the Amish families who live there. But when a double murder rocks this quiet community, the Amish residents resolve to forgive even this unfathomable offense.

Hannah, however, finds forgiveness out of reach--both for the murderer and for herself. She harbors a secret shame: while the crime was committed in her own home, she was out meeting with her forbidden love, her English beau, Reece.

The elders of the community insist that Hannah must forgive her family's killer or be shunned. When Hannah refuses, she runs away with Reece, leaving behind the only life she's ever known.

Years later, Hannah must journey back to the place she no longer calls home. Can she find the forgiveness and belonging she so desperately desires?

Editorial Reviews

I LOVED this book. I was in a rotten mood this weekend and felt I needed a good escape and I definitely found it within the pages of this book. I have been reading ALL the Amish books because I find the Amish lifestyle fascinating. This book brings things up a step. The book shows the Amish as real people and highlights their values of family, faith and honest hard work. All of the elements I love about fiction are included in this book - suspense, love, Christian worldview, murder mystery, and believeable characters.

I have read most of Colleen Coble’s books and love all of them. She usually includes a great dog and this book is no exception, so dog lovers will not be disappointed! Her books keep getting better and better. This is definitely my favorite so far! I couldn’t put this book down and read it in a day and a half. I highly recommend “Anathema.” - The Friendly Book Nook

A damp, chilly wind blows through Park County, Indiana, the night Hannah Schwartz sneaks away to meet Reece by the covered bridge. She knows her love for this Englisch police detective is taboo in her Amish world, but she can’t resist just a few clandestine moments with the man who makes her feel safe while sending her heart racing. Their encounter is brief and painful as Hannah is once again torn between her family, her Amish fiancé and the love she harbors for her secret Englisch suitor. She flees his arms for the safe harbor of her home, only to encounter a gruesome scene.

Both parents have been poisoned, their stiff, constricted bodies covered by one of her mother’s handmade quilts. When their lives are taken away, so too are thousands of dollars worth of Mamms’ quilts. Two strange blood red symbols mar the wall of the living room. Reece knows that one is the symbol of peace, but does it have another meaning as well? Something far more sinister? Nearby, a neighbor’s poisoned body is discovered half submerged in a pond.

Shattered beyond consolation, Hannah wonders if the deaths are her punishment for partaking in a forbidden love. Her heart heavy, laden with pain and guilt, she decides that she has been rejected by God and will leave her Amish community to marry Reece. She is now Anathema, an outcast to God and her people. It isn’t long before Reece’s true colors show through and the bullying begins. As she endures years of abuse at Reece’s hands, Hannah desperately searches for the exquisite stolen quilts, a tangible link to her murdered parents. She knows exactly how to spot her mother’s work, so bold and beautiful that the hummingbird designs nearly fly off the expertly sewn patchwork.

During a heated argument with Reece, Hannah suffers a tragic fall and awakens in the hospital, where Reece tells her that their unborn baby girl did not survive. Hannah is convinced the fall was no accident and leaves Reece to reinvent herself in the Englisch world, where her knowledge of quilts and Amish life leads her to success as an author. On the surface, all is well, but Hannah misses the love of her family and friends, and aches even more for the faith she left behind.

Although the book moves at a quick pace from the start, the real page-turning action begins when Hannah receives a letter from Reece containing a photo of a little girl. The child’s almond eyes and unruly auburn hair, so like her own, leads Hannah to wonder if Reece’s claim is true --- that the child is their daughter. She heads back to her homeland on a journey wrought with heartache, mystery, deceit and love in a plot that continues to twist and turn until the very end. A decade after she fled Park County, Hannah realizes she was never Anathema to the God who loves her unconditionally. I highly recommend a box of tissues for the last couple of chapters.

Colleen Coble’s extensive research and Amish friendships come shining through the characters and imagery of this action-filled story. The devotion to God, peaceful lifestyle and tranquil farms beckon readers to indulge in the experience of visiting an Amish community. Descriptions of warm, damp greenhouses, simple furnishings and the sweet, creamy taste of coffee soup are woven through the pages of this novel like the patterns of a quilt. In addition to a spellbinding story, readers will come away from this book with interesting facts about Amish quilts and what their patterns mean to those who create them. - Susan Miura, FaithfulReader.com

Publisher's Weekly

Although Coble, a veteran novelist of inspirational romantic suspense, has not tried her hand at Amish-themed fiction, the Amish setting is the most compelling aspect of this disappointing suspense novel. Not only does Coble lace the story with the kinds of details that fans of Beverly Lewis and Wanda Brunstetter will love, she sets the novel in a northern Indiana Amish sect with some unique quirks not seen in Lancaster County-based fiction. The plot, however, is predictable—Hannah, a young Amish woman, leaves the community for love with an Englischer but finds the outside world fraught with menaces and trials. Dangers lurk back at home, too, where various members of Hannah’s Amish family turn up dead. This book doesn’t showcase Coble’s usual daft hand with suspense: several attempts on Hannah’s life arise, play out, and are dispatched with in as few as ten sentences each, scarcely permitting readers to believe that real danger is afoot. Although the story has a first-rate setting and some thoughtful musings on Christian forgiveness, the plot is often hackneyed, the scene changes abrupt, and some of the characters—including a stock-villain abusive husband—one-dimensional. (May) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

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