Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Review: Betrayed by Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen with Giveaway


Betrayed by Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen
272 pages
Published 2015 by Covenant Communications
Source: I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
1851: Niagara Falls, New York The evidence has been well hidden—the Thayers were confident that it was safe from the clutches of the ruthless Murphy Gang. But it has all been in vain. The lawless group is closing in on the family homestead, and seven-year-old Penny is given only one instruction: Run. After two long years eagerly anticipating her fianc√©’s return, twenty-year-old Julia Barrett is ready to make a fresh start with Adam Wolcott—even if it means putting her dream of traveling west with the Mormons on hold. But when Adam’s return is overshadowed by the unexpected arrival of a young orphan girl in desperate need of help, Julia is drawn into a dangerous mystery that will threaten all she holds dear. Charged with the protection of little Penny, Julia quickly finds herself relying on the help of Tom Harrison, an endearing young man who has long admired her from afar. Torn between two suitors, Julia soon uncovers a shocking trail of corruption and deceit—a discovery that pulls her inescapably into the race to locate telling evidence that Penny’s family gave their lives to protect . . .  
My Review:
This story instantly captured my attention. First of all, the setting is very intriguing--Niagara Falls, NY in the 1850s. The story goes back and forth between two families. Penny is a young girl who encounters a sad situation when a ruthless gang attacks her home. She escapes and hides, wtih help from an old Indian. I loved little Penny. She is such a sweet girl who has endured too much, yet she doesn't let it change who she is--it all makes her stronger.

The other part of the story covers the Barrett family. They are preparing to go West and join the Mormons when Julia's fiance returns home after two years. He's changed, yet she is determined to make it work. I think Julia is a fantastic character. She's brave and doesn't make decisions too quickly, but she is a little too trusting. Adam, the fiance, is a trickier man to understand. He's definitely got secrets, but who doesn't? Julia has a lot of hard decisions to make. I love her grandma, Nana O. She's at the point in her life where she just says what she thinks, is very accepting, and extremely wise.

Tom, a magician and a friend of Julia's brother's, comes to help the family in their journey. He's a stable force in the story. He's very persistent, but he really seems to see the bigger picture and knows what he's doing.

Secrets are uncovered and mysteries are solved--but at a high price. I really enjoyed the way these two stories intertwined. By the time I was about 3/4 of the way through, I could hardly turn the pages fast enough--it was very intense. Things didn't seem to wrap up completely, so I'm hoping there's a future book in store.

Content: no language; mild-moderate violence (murders, abuse)--non-graphic; mild kissing; mild religious elements (vague mention of religion, one-lined prayers in times of peril)--not preachy at all. Clean!
About the Author:
Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen 
Ronda Hinrichsen, also writing as Kathleen Marks, is the author of Romantic Suspense and Speculative novels, as well as THE HEROES OF THE HIGHEST ORDER chapter book series. She has traveled throughout the world in search of exotic settings and intriguing characters, and loves introducing them to her readers through her stories. 

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