Thursday, January 20, 2011

Blog Tour: The Search (Review)

Fifteen years ago, Lainey O'Toole made a split-second decision. She couldn't have known that her choice would impact so many.

Now in her mid-20s, she is poised to go to culinary school when her car breaks down in Stoney Ridge, the very Amish town in which her long-reaching decision was made, forcing her to face the shadowed past.

Bess Reihl is less than thrilled to be spending the summer at Rose Hill Farm with her large and intimidating grandmother, Bertha. It quickly becomes clear that she is there to work the farm--and work hard. The labor is made slightly more tolerable by the time it affords Bess to spend with the handsome hired hand, Billy Lapp. But he only has eyes for a flirty and curvaceous older girl.

Lainey's and Bess's worlds are about to collide and the secrets that come to light will shock them both.

What I Thought
This is the third novel by Suzanne Woods Fisher that I've had a chance to read. I enjoyed the past novels, and enjoyed this offering as well.

I loved the tone of the novel - it's smooth and sweet (almost like a fine dark chocolate). I enjoyed getting to know the characters in this book.

While it is the third novel in the series, this book is easily read as a stand-a-lone novel. A few characters appeared in the previous books, but they simply have a supporting role in this story. (My favorite way to read a multi-book series - especially if I didn't have a chance to read earlier books).

I'll admit, the time setting didn't immediately jump out at me as the 70s - even though I knew from an interview with Fisher that she planned to focus her novel during this time period.

What I did like about the novel is how Fisher unpacked the "secret" that lies between Lainey and Bess. I also like how Fisher shows a huge amount of redemption and grace as the different family members face their own secrets and began to grow and heal their relationships.

On a scale of one to five, with five being the highest, I give this novel at least a 4.5. I enjoyed reading it and finished it wanting more.

More About The Author
In no particular order, Suzanne Woods Fisher is a wife, mother, writer, lifelong student of the Bible, raiser of puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind, a gardener and a cook...the latter two with sporadic results.

Fisher has loved to write since she was a young teen. After college, she started to write for magazines and became a contributing editor for Christian Parenting Today magazine. Her family moved to Hong Kong for four years, just as the internet was developing, and she continued to write articles in a 44-story high-rise apartment, sending manuscripts 7,000 miles away with a click of a key.

After returning from Hong Kong, Fisher decided to give her first novel a try. For four and a half months, she worked on an antediluvian computer in a cramped laundry room. She didn't even tell her husband what she was up to. When the novel was completed, she told her family at dinner one night that she had written a book. "That's why there's no food in this house!" said her slightly insensitive sons.

Undaunted...Fisher found a small royalty publisher for that book and wrote three more (all earned multiple awards). With help from an agent, she now has numerous  books under contract with Revell. Also look for Fisher's Amish non-fiction, Amish Peace: Simple Wisdom for a Complicated World, a non-fiction book of stories and examples about the Old Order Amish, as well as Amish Proverbs, and coming in spring of 2011, look for Amish Values for Your Family. The Choice and The Waiting are the previous books in the Lancaster County Secrets Collection.

Writing, for Fisher, is a way to express a love of God and His word. With every book or article, she hopes readers get a sense of what faith really looks like in the daily grind. She hopes they realize that life can be hard, but God is good, and never to confuse the two.

Fisher can be found on-line at:

More About The Search
Buy The Search by Suzanne Woods Fisher at Amazon
Follow the blog tour for The Search

More About The Other Books in the Series
My Review & Interview with Fisher - The Choice (book 1)
My Review & Interview with Fisher - The Waiting (book 2)

It's A Contest!
Suzanne Woods Fisher's latest installment of the Lancaster County Secrets, The Search,  is just out and to celebrate Suzanne is hosting The Search iPad Giveaway!

One Grand Prize winner will receive an iPad Prize Package worth over $500 and includes:
To enter, simply click on the icons below to fill out the entry form/s, then tell 5 or more friends about the contest. Oh, and enter soon! Winner will be announced on Thursday, Feb. 3, Fisher's Everything is Coming Up Roses Facebook Party. (Did you know The Search takes place on a rose farm?)

Enter via E-mail Enter via Facebook Enter via Twitter
Facebook Party:
Join Fisher for the Everything is Coming Up Roses Facebook Party on Thursday, Feb. 3. She’ll be announcing the winner of the The Search iPad Giveaway, hosting a book club discussion of The Search, giving away copies of all three books and HEAPS of other readerly prizes! Including roses delivered to your door for three months for you AND a friend! Be sure to join us at 5 p.m. PST (6 p.m. MST, 7 p.m. CST & 8 p.m. EST) at Suzanne’s Author Page.

Note: As a freelance journalist, I was provided a copy of this book by Litfuse Publicity Group. This review was not influenced by a free book - just in case you (or the FTC) were worried about this detail.


  1. Hi Kaylea! Oh...a novel being compared to dark chocolate. I love it! I know just what you mean, too!
    Thanks for being a part of the blog tour--I always look forward to reading your thoughts. Warmly, Suzanne
    PS If you have time, would you post your review on Amazon/CBD? Thanks, Kaylea!

  2. Blush - thanks Suzanne...
    I'll get it posted on those sites and Goodreads this weekend.

    Great job!


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