Thursday, July 21, 2011

Book of the Year 2009: Shadows of Lancaster County by Mindy Starns Clark

~*~Hey, everyone, to explain--my annual Book of the Year choice doesn't necessarily mean that the book was published in the year I write about it. It just means that I considered it the best book I'd read all year. Hope you guys pick it up and enjoy it as much as I did!~*~

Storyline: Anna Bailey is not her real name, and California is not her real home. She moved from Pennsylvania following a tragedy within the Amish community she lived close to. She hoped to never go back.

But her brother has disappeared, and his wife frantically calls Anna, unsure of who else to turn to. Anna finds herself embroiled in a tangle of DNA experiments, family secrets, and the loving arms of God's mercy as she fights for her life.

My Thoughts: Wow! Mindy Starns Clark may have had typos and grammatical errors in this book, but for the most part I easily overlooked them.

Four words: This. Book. Was. Amazing.

Yes, there were a few things in it I didn't like—one scene is a teen party involving underage drinking and marijuana among other things—however, there were drastic consequences for these actions and they are part of Anna's past that she regrets, which makes her redemption that much more moving.

The tense scenes where Anna tries to figure out what happened to her brother, plus all the interesting facts about DNA research and the Amish community, make this an enthralling read. It's not just a thrilling mystery, it's a science and history book too! Plus the twists she throws in it really knocked me for a loop!

Do yourself a favor—if you want to read a compelling, fast-paced read that is well-written, read this book. I can't recommend it enough!

Rating: Five out of five stars (I just bought it two days ago!)

Also by Mindy Starns Clark: Penny For Your Thoughts, Don't Take Any Wooden Nickels, Dime A Dozen, and The Buck Stops Here (The Million Dollar Mysteries); The Trouble With Tulip, Blind Dates Can Be Murder, and Elementary, My Dear Watkins (The Smart Chick Mysteries); Whispers of the Bayou and Under the Cajun Moon (stand-alones); and The House That Cleans Itself (housekeeping).


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