I have read all of Susan May Warren's Deep Haven novels and have liked them all; however her latest, "You Don't Know Me," is the best one in my opinion! Annalise is the model wife and mother, her husband is running for town mayor, she takes care of the home, attends all of the events that her children participate in and has a great relationship with her mother-in-law whom lives across the street. However, Annalise that a huge secret that no one knows about and she tries not to think about too much, that is until Frank arrives in town. Years earlier, Frank became Annalise's agent when she was forced to take on a new identity and recolate through the Witness Security Program. Now that Annalise's life as well as each of her family member's lives may be in danger, Annalise has difficult decisions to make while maintaining the facade that she has been living behind as well for so many years.
This book is one that kept me turning the pages and I did not want to stop reading until I reached the end. The characters are so real and their struggles and every day life and their relationships are what readers can reate to and empathize with. Annalise and Nathan are raising three children and living across the street from Nathan's mother. They are an "All-American Family;" yet they each have their own struggles as well. Nathan and Helen have had to live and deal with the broken marriage and death of Nathan's father. Helen may have the chance for love again; however the cancer may have returned as well. Each of the children have struggles in their own lives; either finding out who they really are, relationship and first love struggles, and pressure of fitting in with peers. This is a story that should not be missed out on, it is a portrayal of small town life, a "perfect" family and the support that is needed and provided for neighbors.
"You Don't Know Me" by Susan May Warren is a story of secrets and honesty and forgiveness and second chances and trusting God to help with it all. I really enjoyed reading this book! It's the sixth of the "Deep Haven Novels," though these books don't have to be read in order. (I still haven't gotten to books 1, 2, and 3, but plan to very soon, I hope!) Each of these books is set in the small tourist town of Deep Haven, Minnesota, and tells the story of some of the inhabitants there.
"You Don't Know Me" is the story of the Decker family. Nathan and Annalise appear to be the perfect couple with three nearly perfect kids. Middle child, Colleen is the only one Annalise worries about. Colleen's attraction to Tucker, the boy Annalise has branded bad news, is cause for great concern.
Greater concerns are coming, though. Agent Frank Harrison has news about the man Annalise testified against twenty years ago . . . when she was still Deidre O'Reilly . . . before she entered the witness security program and changed her whole identity, a little fact she neglected to mention to her family.
I won't tell you any more, except that Susan May Warren came up with the perfect solution to this tragic dilemma while weaving many essential truths about Christian living into the tale. (I was most touched by Helen's struggle and growth.)
I'm happy to recommend this book which I obtained on my own just because I wanted to read it.
Annalise is not who everyone thinks she is. She is in the Witness Security program and hiding in a small town. Even her husband and children don't know her real identity. Then the guy who threatened her years ago is out of jail and looking for her....
I really liked this book. I can't imagine taking on a whole new identity to be safe and then having to keep the secret from those you love. Good book with a good ending.
This is the first book by Susan May Warren that I have ever read. I was captivated by the story before I even finished the prologue. By the time I was halfway through it I was checking to see if the library had some of her other books. I'm hooked and excited about the idea of reading everything she has written.
The character development is wonderful. The biblical insights were thought provoking. They made me think deeply about the application of New Testament teaching on how to live life and treat those we are closest to.
The followings are my honest opinions about this book.To anyone interested in it: why not give it a try and see if you like it?
I was very excited when I got this book and it was with great anticipation that I started reading it the very same day it arrived, as I was hoping to get a GREAT read. I really tried to enjoy it, I really did, but in the end, I found it to be...a good read.
The idea for the novel is very interesting. For her each of novels I've read so far, I thought that Warren's ideas were well-thought. The beginning of this book was full of nail-biting suspense but as I kept reading I found a good part of the story to be very repetitive and slow and I found the characters' development to be lacking.
I mean, maybe it was because she was hiding secrets and all, but I just couldn't bring myself to like Annalise... she seemed fake. Overall, I didn't feel like the characters were real people at times. Nathan, Frank, Helen, Colleen and the others just seem very distant, in my opinion as a reader. Everything they did -and even who they were- all of it seemed to stay on surface level.
YDKM is a good title because there are many characters with secrets. However, at times I thought the story seemed like a mix of characters' thoughts and actions, not an adventure I could dive into. Not a journey I could savor .
But my heart was moved because of poor Tucker! Oh, poor guy, always being misunderstood and all. And there were some things said that really gave me a pause, including an opinion on marriage that Helen's sister gave to her :
' I've learned that marriage isn't just for our joy, but to make us stronger, better people. To change us into the people God wants us to be....' (p. 169).
Then the real story behind the novel mentioned in the author's notes... Heartbreaking. (Oh, Lord have mercy...)
A good read.
Maybe not a page-turning one, in my opinion. More than halfway through, I skimmed and skipped some parts just to get to the end. And the plot did end up picking my curiosity by the way, and I found the ending to be quite lovely.
I'm still very opened to the idea of giving another one of Warren's novels a try.