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Secrets (The Michelli Family Series Book #1): A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Kristen Heitzmann
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,438 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Lance Michelli is on a quest to discover the secrets his grandmother cannot tell. What happened all those years ago, and what is it she so desperately needs him to find? The old villa in Sonoma holds the answers, but it is now owned by a young woman who neither knows nor cares about his mission. But Rese Barret is a force to contend with, and her own impending storm could sweep him up as their sparring creates a fierce and uncomfortable attraction. From bestselling author Kristen Heitzmann.

Books In This Series (3 Books)
Complete Series

  • Editorial Reviews


    "a wonderful combination of contemporary fiction, romance and mystery, with a strong faith message that is neither preachy nor condescending." --

    "fast-paced and complex love story, enhanced by a riveting mystery. Lance is a keeper as a hero and Rese adorable." -- Romantic Times

    ...sparring and humorous conflict between the main characters contrasts poignantly with heart-rending mysteries of their lives...a stirring read. -- Christian Book Previews

    About the Author

    Kristen Heitzmann is a full-time writer and bestselling author of twelve previous novels including Halos and The Still of Night. She and her family live in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

    Product Details

    • File Size: 1279 KB
    • Print Length: 420 pages
    • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (September 1, 2004)
    • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B008AV8J6I
    • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Not Enabled
    • Lending: Enabled
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #75,378 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    188 of 195 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Wow December 1, 2004
    This is the first book I have read by Ms. Heitzmann, and I'll surely be back for more. This story is not in my ususal genre, but I sure did like it. Heitzmann is a wonderful character crafter. This story really gets in deep under the skin and into the souls of the characters. It made me cry more than once. I was also impressed by her ability to describe scenery-I felt as though I was actually there.

    The themes of this book are: trust in your abilities, trust in others, but above all, trust in the Lord. An amazing story with an amazing purpose.

    Highly recommended.
    Was this review helpful to you?
    124 of 129 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Faith Tested and Redeemed with a Side of Romance January 4, 2005
    Secrets is a romantic mystery between two people who seek truth, but flounder in secrets from the past and present. Lance Michelli has always been a rebel, but not the typical bad guy rebel.

    With his motorcycle, long hair and earring, he looked the part, but his rebellions often resulted from trying to do the right thing without thinking of the consequences first. After the untimely death of his brother, Lance is determined to follow in his brother's footsteps by doing things the right way.

    When Lance's grandmother falls ill, she begs him to finish something for her, but she can't communicate all that she needs to tell him. That leaves Lance traveling to Italy to look up an old relative who can shed some light on the thing Nonna needs Lance to do for her. The trip to Italy leads him to California to the cottage where his grandmother was raised and where Reece Barret has started renovations to turn it into a bed and breakfast.

    After the death of her father, Reece pours everything she knows into the renovation of the cottage as a final tribute to her life with her father. When Lance appears on her doorstep looking for a job and able to do all the things Reece doesn't like to do, she hires him on the spot. Lance has a way of getting Reece to open up and talk about things she has never told anyone before.

    Lance also heightens Reece's hunger for God by the way he lives and the things he talks about. Lance shares his faith and his Bible with her.

    As she begins to trust him and seek God, Lance is learning more and more about his family's connection to the cottage, but he can't tell Reece for fear she will question his motives for befriending her.
    Read more ›
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    111 of 118 people found the following review helpful
    1.0 out of 5 stars This first book of the trilogy wasn't as offensive February 9, 2013
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    I read other reviews, saying Bible verses were quoted and such, I therefore expected a Christian mystery story. It would be better described as a Catholic trilogy, and an odd and disturbing one at that. I am not Catholic, and I don't know if most Catholics believe that handsome rogue men who grew up Catholic can heal cleft palate with an exaggerated prayer (not Biblical), "bind" demons (not Biblical) and have special spiritual powers (hmmmm...) Worse, this guy is the hero -- yet he is the kind of man who ignores the woman's "No" to physical advances, and gets his way anyway, and oh the woman doesn't mind. How cute. (!) I really thought also, the sexuality in this book was over the top, and inappropriate. This is SO not Christian. It is definitely NOT Biblical, the beliefs put forth. Since the first book wasn't THAT off, I started the second, and that is when it really goes into weird stuff. I don't recommend this book, or the second. I didn't get the third, so I can't comment on that one.
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    87 of 96 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars A First Time Read For Me...But It Won't Be The Last! November 15, 2004
    This is the first time I've ever read anything by Ms.Heitzmann so I came to this story with both an open mind and open heart. Without going into a long and detailed synopsis suffice it to say that this is a strongly driven character read that will have the reader glued to the pages if only to see how Lance and Rese will finally deal with all of the baggage that they both carry.

    This story is full of rich and wonderful characters (including a dog that likes to ride a Harley) and wonderful descriptive scenes regarding Sonoma (I'm from this part of California) that places the reader right in the heart of this wonderful part of California. Ms. Heitzmann uses the secrets of Nonna as another vehicle for this story, and as a result the mystery surrounding her request of Lance will also keep the reader firmly engaged. Rese may seem unlikable in the beginning of this story, but readers should give her a chance before writing her off. Lance on the other hand seems almost too perfect except we the reader know from the beginning that he has a secret of his own. As a result of this push and pull the romance between Rese and Lance is strongly written, and the reader can believe that they are truly falling in love with each other. For a well-rounded read I highly recommend Ms. Heitzmann's "Secrets". You won't be disappointed.

    Official Reviewer for [...]
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    25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, Character-Driven Love Story July 17, 2006
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    This was the second book I tackled by Kristen Heitzmann, & it was worth every hour.

    Rese & Lance are polar opposites. She's a do-it-herself craftsman who's never truly expressed any emotion she's ever had. He's an artistic jack-of-all-trades who's lived his life in the shadow of his older brother & never finished anything he started. Oh, & he has an earring. As if their clashing personalities are not enough, Lance is a Christian while Rese observes God & the Bible as mere fairytale.

    On a mission from his grandmother, Lance unexpectedly finds himself working for Rese as she restores a beautiful old house into a charming bed & breakfast. Little does she know that the house in which she has invested all of her finances was actually built by, & may still belong to, Lance's family. The two form an odd friendship, eventually moving beyond the obvious reasons why they should dislike each other. But as Lance digs further into his family's history while failing to make Rese aware of his true intentions, love begins to grow within both. Can it survive once the truth erupts?

    Thought-provoking, at times heart-wrenching, this book keeps moving. I am amazed at Heitzmann's ability to create realistic characters who survive all-to-real situations. This story saunters along at such an easy, natural pace, I quickly lost track of time & finished it in only a few hours. The thoughts, feelings, reactions, & speech of each character are easy to understand, especially when considering the challenges each face. The only thing I found a bit distracting was the continued references to "terrorists", which is today's buzzword much like "communists" was in the '50's.

    I laughed, I cried, & then I clasped my hands & said, 'Ahhh...' Sweet, refreshing, & intriguing. If you love romances, Kristen Heitzmann, or both, you will love this book. And don't worry...there's a sequel.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Wonderful read! Take in the whole series!
    Published 1 hour ago by Cheryll L. Collins
    1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
    Because of all the negative reviews, I did not read this free book.
    Published 2 days ago by Luvs2Read2
    3.0 out of 5 stars Good read, poor ending.
    It was a good book, however it seemed it just kept raising expectation, only to end anti_climatic.
    Published 3 days ago by Roxanna Barringer
    5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed this very much
    I enjoyed reading this story. The characters and their personalities were well written, enough so that the reader does care about them and what happens to them. Read more
    Published 3 days ago by CNL
    5.0 out of 5 stars Good reading
    Good book. I enjoyed reading your book. It was well written and had a variety of characters. Each with their own story. I look forward to reading more from Kristen. Read more
    Published 4 days ago by Best Nana Ever
    5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
    Great character development showing the good and bad in characters while keeping the charm and likeability too. Touching, romantic, and real life struggles.
    Published 4 days ago by Kelly Winther
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Enjoyed the book from start to finish. Cannot wait to read book 2.
    Published 8 days ago by kay wallace
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Absolutely loved it. Couldn't put it down.
    Published 11 days ago by Cheri
    3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
    A nice read.
    Published 14 days ago by Blondnette Chevon Hines
    4.0 out of 5 stars Good read! Surprising story!
    Once I started I was hooked. Had to follow Lance's venture, finding his history and skeletons while giving an old woman peace! And so much more!!
    Published 15 days ago by EVOO
    Search Customer Reviews

    More About the Author

    Kristen Heitzmann is the bestselling author of contemporary romantic suspense, psychological suspense, and historical novels, including Colorado Book Award finalist The Still of Night, Christy Award finalists Indivisible and The Tender Vine and Christy Award winner Secrets. In 2013, her novel The Breath of Dawn won both a Christy Award and Inspirational Readers Choice Award and was a finalist for a people's choice award in the Netherlands. She is a fiction track and workshop teacher at American Christian Fiction Writers Conference and keynote speaker for women's and writers' conferences.

    An artist and musician, she'll also be found hiking the Colorado Rocky Mountain trails near her home where she lives with her husband, pets, wildlife, and extended family.

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