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Endless Chain (Shenandoah Album) Hardcover – July 1, 2005

43 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The backwater town of Toms Brook, Va., again forms the bucolic setting for the second installment in Richards's Shenandoah Album series (Wedding Ring), a densely plotted romance centering on Elisa Martinez, a refugee from Guatemala, and Sam Kinkade, minister of the Shenandoah Community Church. Hiding a dark past, Elisa arrives in Toms Brook seeking the job of church sexton as the community deals with a recent influx of Hispanic immigrants. Not all members of the Shenandoah Community Church welcome the newcomers, but Sam Kinkade spearheads a church-run effort to create "La Casa Amarilla," an educational program for Hispanic children housed in a pre–Civil War house with an incredible history. From the get-go, sparks fly between Elisa and Sam, who is engaged to an Atlanta society belle. Richards weaves numerous subplots around Elisa and Sam's growing love: her escape from political strife in Guatemala, the challenges facing both working class and educated immigrants like Elisa, plus the history of a runaway slave who once hid in La Casa Amarilla's historic building and whose tale parallels Elisa's. Throughout this heartfelt if often implausible novel, the women of the church's quilting bee support Sam's religious calling to make a difference, Elisa's gradual revelation of her past and the couple's blossoming relationship. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Toms Brook, Virginia, a hamlet in bucolic Shenandoah Valley, might seem an unlikely place to harbor an international fugitive, and yet for Elisa Martinez, it's a perfect hiding place. Fiercely protective of its privacy and independence, it welcomes outsiders, at least until the area's Hispanic community grows to proportions that make the locals uncomfortable. When an outreach center at the community church becomes a target for vandals, activist preacher Sam Kinkade is presented with a serious challenge. Hiring Elisa as the church's new sexton just might be the answer to the church's--and Sam's--prayers, although Sam doesn't realize that the enigmatic Elisa is wanted in her native Guatemala on false murder charges. Against both their better judgments, Elisa and Sam fall in love, a situation that Elisa fears will jeopardize her safety and possibly end Sam's career. As she did in her first quilt-inspired Shenandoah Album novel, Wedding Ring (2004), Richards seamlessly joins contrasting and complementing elements--an intriguing political mystery, a long-forgotten local tragedy, and a contemporary love story--in an emotionally charged and transcendent tale of the ways love and faith can triumph in the face of seemingly overwhelming odds. Carol Haggas
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Product Details

  • Series: Shenandoah Album (Book 2)
  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Mira (July 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0778321983
  • ISBN-13: 978-0778321989
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.4 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #275,068 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I'm the author of 70 something novels. I find relationships fascinating and write about them no matter what genre I'm exploring at the moment.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By rebelmomof2 VINE VOICE on February 18, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I am an Emilie Richards fan. I have read just about all of her books and this one is definitely one of the best ones in her collection. I am really happy to see that the characters that I love so much in The Wedding Ring have been reintroduced in this book even though they are just supporting characters. Nancy, Helen and Tessa are back only this time, the story revolves around Rev. Sam Kinkade and Elisa Martinez. Sam Kinkade is the young reverend that has taken over the small community church. He has also set up the parsonage house to be an afterschool tutoring program to help teach English to the Hispanic children in the community. Elisa is a young Hispanic woman who is hired to be the church's sexton. She also works at the local nursing home.

They both have histories that neither are willing to share but have baggage in which neither could trust the other just yet. Sam is also engaged to a lovely woman named Christine who lives in Atlanta. However, he could feel an intense attraction to Elisa who is also surrounded by mysteries of her own. And this novel is their story.

This is perhaps one of the most intense-written novels in awhile that is from Richards' collection. This one has another story written into Elisa's story ~~ there is a story of a runaway slave tied to Elisa's past ~~ and Elisa's life runs parallel to it. Elisa is also a runaway but from a different sort of circumstances. Richards really writes more intensely of a political nature that is surprising as well ~~ she writes intimately of a civil right that most Americans have taken for granted, freedom from being perscuted by the government.

This is a compelling book ~~ one that you will not be able to put down.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on July 15, 2005
Format: Hardcover
In Toms Brook, Virginia, Minister Sam Kinkade enjoys working with the congregation of the Shenandoah Valley Community Church until his programs to help the growing Latino population adjust runs into strong opposition including nasty vandalism. On the plus side he hires Elisa Martinez to serve as liaison between the communities that Sam represents.

Though engaged to a social climber, Sam is intrigued by Elisa who remains a mystery but is terrific as a sexton. Unbeknownst to Sam, Elise is on the run changing locations, jobs, and names often so as to hide her identity and insuring she stays detached. However, first the congregation's quilting circle, then the rest of the members and finally Sam have gotten inside her heart so that this time vanishing into the night will leave her scarred forever with memories of what could have been if only. However, as she lingers, Elise' past arrives in town forcing decisions by one and all.

ENDLESS CHAIN is an intriguing community drama that will have the audience wondering what or who is Elisa running from and what will happen to her and her beloved Sam when the past catches up to her. This work is inspirational although the well written story line does not offer miracle clean ups but provides a miraculous tale of redemption, and second chances with a congregation coming together with the nurturing healing of love, which is the miracle. Emilie Richards provides her audience with a beautiful and wonderful character driven contemporary romance.

Harriet Klausner
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By D. J. KING on June 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I picked up this book after reading the first of the Shenandoah series. The first book was sweet and a fun read but this book was terrific. The story was wonderful! I loved the characters and was glad to see the characters back from the first book. The Author understands quilters, their quirks and the beauty of the art that they love.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Linda Scott on August 19, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I read the first book in this series (Wedding Ring) and could not wait to get this book. Emilie Richards writes a very nice story and it keeps you tuning the pages. It is a great story about the lives of many people and the trials and tribulations each person goes through. This book is a great read and when you finish the book you can't wait to read Emilie Richards next one.

I highly recommend this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kathleen M. Nash on August 14, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In the tradition of her first quilting novel, Emilie Richards has continued the story of Toms Creek,VA.

Ms. Richards continues to develop the characters from the first book in this trilogy, while introducing new and exciting people from the community. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Elisa and Sam and how they both fit so intricately into the fabric of this area. You can easily image yourself as part of this community and look forward to seeing how the story will "turn out." This story is one to be read and savored.

In addition, I encourage those readers who are also quilters, to explore the quilting books that go along with the stories. Ms. Richards descriptions of the quilts in the book makes you want to see the quilts themselves.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nancy on October 25, 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
After leaving his previous job as a minister in a rather glitzy church were being seen is more important then doing good, Sam Kinkade has settled into the town of Toms Brook, VA, the same setting as Richards previous book Wedding Ring. With many of the same characters, the author weaves a new story around the church and their new Sexton, Elisa Martinez, a refugee from Guatemala.

Sam and his fellow parishioners have opened up La Casa Amarilla on the grounds of the church to act as an education program for the Hispanic children new to the area. But as the story progresses we see that everyone has a secret, including the pre-Cival War home that houses the school.

With precise storytelling, Emilie Richards unwinds a wonderful addition to her Shenandoah Album series that brings the residents of Toms Brook into our homes and makes the reader a wonderful addition to the close knit community that cares for one another in a way that now seems foreign to most of us.
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