by Tina Ann Forkner

May 2009
ISBN: 978-1-4000-7359-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Waterbrook Press
Trade Paperback

Lillian Diamon has been warned that her husband and children might have been murdered, and she should be very careful when going out. But Lillian believed that the suggestion of murder is unfounded…at least until she goes to the Sonoma Valley and feels someone is following her. Desperate to flee the scene, she happens upon the woman who owns The Rose House and spills out her grief to her, as well as her hope for the future.

When Lillian later returns to the Sonoma Valley, an unexpected discovery comes to light. On display in the La Rosaleda Gallery is a painting of Lillian. One that captures every detail of one of Lillian’s most private moments of misery, from the sorrow on her face to the sandals adorning her feet.

The mystery of the portrait suddenly becomes entangled with the accident that claimed the lives of Lillian’s family. And Lillian is left to discover the truth about what really happened that day.

Rose House is a rather poignant story of a woman trying to find herself amongst the grief that colors her life after the untimely death of her whole family. With bits of heart-pounding excitement that keep the pages turning, readers also mourn with Lillian.

Characterization, setting, and suspense are all woven together in a story that reads seamlessly. I couldn’t help but cry over the loss of the family, but also felt outrage when someone intrudes upon Lillian’s private life and puts it on display. I hoped that Lillian would find the hope she searched for and healing from the emotional upheaval that happened off the pages of this book. Discussion questions are included at the end of the book.

Reviewed in August 2009 by Laura.

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