A family's loyalty is put to the ultimate test in this haunting and unforgettable debut.
Kirsten Hammarstrom hasn't been home to her tiny corner of rural Wisconsin in years - not since the mysterious disappearance of a local teenage girl rocked the town and shattered her family. Kirsten was just nine years old when Stacy Lemke went missing, and the last person to see her alive was her boyfriend, Johnny - the high school wrestling star and Kirsten's older brother. No one knows what to believe - not even those closest to Johnny - but the event unhinges the quiet farming community and pins Kirsten's family beneath the crushing weight of suspicion.
Now, years later, a new tragedy forces Kirsten and her siblings to return home, where they must confront the devastating event that shifted the trajectory of their lives. Tautly written and beautifully evocative, The Mourning Hours is a gripping portrayal of a family straining against extraordinary pressure, and a powerful tale of loyalty, betrayal, and forgiveness.
©2014 Paula Treick DeBoard (P)2014 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.
If they were looking for a suspenseful thriller with great twists, I would absolutely NOT recommend this book. It's incredibly predictable and really slow.
If they were looking for a book that was told from an interesting perspective, that of a young girl, then this may be a good choice.
For me, it was a waste of time.
How about anything? The book didn't really have any twists. I was constantly waiting for evidence to surface or a clue to be found just to re-engage the listener/reader in the story. I have other titles written by her on my Wish List and honestly might take them off.
As a Wisconsin native, it was incredibly annoying how the narrator pronounced the town names. This book should have been read by someone familiar with the pronunciation or written with fictional names.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
The reviews for The Mourning Hours are all over the place . . . and nearly all of them miss the point . . . the beauty, the horror, and the fragility of normal life . . . of normal families . . . and yes, normal teenage infatuation . . . perhaps you need to have lived a little more of life, raised a kid or two, to appreciate the story . . . if you are looking for nail biting suspense, edge-of-the-seat police investigation, this isn't your book . . . but if you're up for an in depth look into a normal family, raising three kids, whose lives are suddenly and irrevocably changed by one night of tragedy, this may be for you . . . for in all our minds exists the capacity for hatred, doubt, fear, mistrust . . . even for those closest to us . . . and we are often surprised by who among us ends up being the strongest, who among us weathers the storm, holds on to who they are, and never stops believing in the best in one another . . . and who among us doubts . . . there's a mystery in The Mourning Hours . . . but it doesn't unfold quickly . . . and in that, there is a lesson . . . this book will stay with me for a long, long time . . .
The grandfather. I loved picturing the grandfather with his shot gun, kicking people off the property.
The moment that stands out the most to me was the moment when the mother announced that she was taking a job in Madison & the girls decided to move with her, leaving the father alone on the farm. It was absolutely heart-wrenching for this poor man who did nothing wrong to be abandoned. I hated that part!
Portrayed the character of a young girl quite well.
Yes! I felt sick to my stomach for this family that was being ripped to shreds. This poor boy's life was ruined, as was that of his sisters. So much was taken from them. I shed some tears at several different places in the story.
Great read! Strong emotional reaction to several characters (i.e. Stacy - I hated her!) and to the injustice of the treatment bestows upon this family. Would recommend to friends for sure.
This is a character survey, not a thriller. It could be described as a mystery if one to invest in the characters. Enough of a let down it's doubtful I will read this author again.
I loved the descriptions of the family life from the point of view of a young child. She did not have all the experience needed to process what she felt and saw, and yet was carrying burdens she could not hold alone. In straight-forward prose, Paula Treick DeBoard depicts a family coming apart at the scenes due to both internal and external events.
Emily Sutton-Smith was a great narrator, occasionally awkward, but her dialogue was pitch-perfect.
I loved this book, and greatly look forward to the author's next book. Perhaps the ending was a bit rushed, but the author's description of the midwestern town and the family dynamics carried this through to a satisfying bittersweet conclusion.
not for the credit
There were some interesting characters but this was very, very predictable. It wasn't flat out bad but you knew where it was going
The story is told mainly in a flashback from the point of view of a child. It's very well drawn out and paced pretty well, with believable characters and situations. Then all of a sudden, the secret truth that's driven the story and destroyed these characters' lives is delivered in a most undramatic, anticlimactic manner that seems to tie everything up with a bow. We never learn why the killer killed the victim, and the climactic confrontation scene really...isn't, when all is said and done. Up to that point though, it had been a great story, drawing me in and getting me emotionally invested in the characters.
This a great story on how people can try and convict a person without the benefits of a trial. To see what this family went through is memorable.
Emily Sutton-Smith was perfect. I can really picture that this was her story she was telling.
I would recommend this audiobook for sure!
Did not want it to end. It was as if I was there in Wisconsin with the family. Great storytelling. Very excited I found this author. Although the story was completely different, I found myself thinking it was like The Secret Lives of Bees. The words just flowed out so gracefully.
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