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A Darkly Hidden Truth (The Monastery Murders) Paperback – December 1, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Donna Fletcher Crow is author of more than thirty-five novels. She has twice won first place in the Historical Fiction category from the National Association of Press Women, and has also been a finalist for "Best Inspirational Novel" from the Romance Writers of America. She is a member of The Arts Centre Group, and Sisters in Crime. www.donnafletchercrow.com
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Product Details

  • Series: The Monastery Murders (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 366 pages
  • Publisher: Monarch Books (December 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857210505
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857210500
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,352,263 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Donna Fletcher Crow, who lives in Idaho with her husband of 46 years, is the mother of four adult children, grandmother of 10 and author of thirty-some books, mostly novels dealing with British history. Her best known book is the epic historical novel Glastonbury, The Novel of Christian England, which was awarded First Place, Historical Fiction, by the National Federation of Press Women.

After almost 10 years in the publishing wilderness Donna is reentering the fray with The Monastery Murders, a series of ecclesiastical mysteries featuring Felicity Howard, an American woman studying for the Anglican priesthood in a monastery in remote Yorkshire. When Felicity's favorite monk is bludgeoned to death she finds herself learning about a lot more than theoretical theology. A Very Private Grave, the first in the series will be released by Monarch Books (Lion Hudson) in May 2010 in the UK and next Sept. in the US by Kregel Books.

She says, "I write historical novels and contemporaries that draw heavily on historical background, because I believe it is vitally important that we not loose touch with our rich historical heritage. Those who have gone before us have worked too hard and suffered too much to preserve the privileges we enjoy for us to forget their stories. Reading of the triumphs of the faithful in ages past can inspire and strengthen us for our own challenging times."

Donna is an enthusiastic gardener, enjoying the challenge of growing an English cottage garden in the Idaho desert. You can visit her garden at http://novelgarden.blogspot.com/
She also enjoys drinking tea with family and friends and hearing from her readers. You can write to her at DonnaFCrow@aol.com.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Books & Benches on April 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
A Reader's Opinion: Let me begin by saying that I found this book both, interesting and enjoyable - simply put, I liked it. Let me explain. I know nothing of Catholicism, very little of the Church of England, or to be honest, a majority of the religious references and history mentioned in this book. Before reading, I was aware that I would run into a lot of unfamiliar information and I believe that is what allowed me to enjoy the book as much as I did. There were times when I felt there was too much delving into the religious aspect, but I read those sections more like I was in a university class, so I found it interesting.

Antony was by far my favorite character. He's kind, chivalrous and unassuming, but certainly not boring. His humble demeanor was balanced out with noticeable charm and I found myself smiling each and every time he winked or grinned at Felicity. Our heroine, Felicity was an enigma in the first third of the book. I couldn't decide if I liked her or was just putting up with her. As the story progressed, Felicity proved to be a worthy heroine - a modern personality warring with the search for some higher purpose. She found her footing halfway through and began to show her strength and determination. Her personality seemed to shine through more as the story progressed and I became immersed in both the intellectual and romantic relationship between her and Antony.

Then there's the murder and mystery - well plotted, well developed and not entirely predictable. I'll admit that one of the culprits was a complete surprise to me. I had gone along thinking I knew everyone who did it and where I figured out most, I appreciated that the author could twist enough to keep me on my mental toes.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Tammy's Book Parlor on February 17, 2012
Format: Paperback
Not having read the first book, A Very Private Grave, I thought this read might leave me wondering what was going on...not so!
This read begins with Felicity embarking on a journey to become a nun. Felicity reminded me of Maria in the movie, The Sound of Music. Felicity loves life and likes change. Sometimes Felicity changes her way of life, like wanting to become a nun, just because the notion overtakes her at the time or going off to another convent just because of the adventure. Even though, at the time, Felicity is totally convinced that it is the right thing to do, never thinking of consequences or life results. One cannot help but love Felicity!
Being Protestant I was slightly confused at the being of this read...I thought this was about the Catholic church but then I realized that Felicity and Anthony are Anglican (like the Episcopal church). A Catholic priest takes a vow not to marry; whereas, an Anglican priest can marry. From a protestants view point, I found all of the church history very enlightening and informative.
This is one read that won't leave you hanging! The mystery of sacred icons being stolen and murders abounding makes for a grand gothic read! Ms. Crow writes with a dynamic mix of intellect and realism! The reader can "feel" the chill of the monastery or the blandness of the dreary sky.
Then there is the emotion of family dynamics between Felicity and her mother which is so true to life or the sweet hint of romance whenever Anthony is around Felicity. Loved the ending to this story!
This stand.alone.read is not to be missed! And will make you wanting more...waiting impatiently for The Unholy Communion book #3 in the Monastery Murders.
*This book was provided for review by Kregel Publications*
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jettie on February 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
2nd in the series, The Monastery Murders
Published by Monarch Books

I received this book from Kregel publications to read and review. No other compensation was given.
All opinions expressed here are my own, I'm not required to give a positive review.

Felicity receives a message from her mother, her parents are divorcing, and mom is on her way to visit. So she decides to go on retreat, to avoid her mother, who she feels has been distant and career orientated during Felicity's childhood.

Religious Icons are disappearing from several monasteries, and Antony, who she has helped solve a murder with before, wants her help. He shows up with her mother in tow . Of course they get into trouble, and even think they are about to be killed.

I enjoyed the story, my only complaint is the extensive descriptions of religious history at the various monasteries. Anyone who is more a history buff of this era, than I am, probably would really enjoy the story more.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By E. Saylor on February 1, 2012
Format: Paperback
I just finished reading a good historical fiction novel that is full of Catholic history and English culture: A Darkly Hidden Truth (The Monastery Murders) by Donna Fletcher Crow. It's a suspense novel with many twist and turns. The characters are well-developed and the stories rich with the blessings and struggles in friendship, marriage, family and community. I appreciated reading about the main character's struggle to determine her life calling in vocation and marriage. I loved reading the wisdom from saints of long ago. And I was inspired by the Catholic liturgy and rituals. It paints a picture of life inside of a monastery - from the beauty to the visions to the practices and missions. It is somewhat reminiscent of The DaVinchi Code. t's not always a fast-paced mystery thriller, but if you want to explore history while reading, you'll enjoy this book. It could also be a good homeschool reading for history and religion. Happy reading!
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