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Once Beyond a Time

Narrated by: Lisa Reichert
Length: 8 hrs and 41 mins
Categories: Fiction, Historical
5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

It’s 1968, and Sheldon and Meg Crane have just moved their family from Pennsylvania to the small town of Black Mountain, NC. Sheldon, recently ousted from the ministry due to an illicit affair, takes a job as a used-car salesman at his brother-in-law's auto dealership. 

Burdened by his wife’s unforgiveness and his daughter’s resentment over the move to “Barney Fife country”, Sheldon finds a measure of solace in his eight-year-old son’s ability to cope. 

After settling into an old house high on the side of a mountain, the family discovers their new home is no ordinary place. Family members occasionally see and speak with the home’s previous residents - and the ones who will live there in the future. 

While attempting to come to terms with this portal to the past and future, their son, Digger, suddenly disappears. Was he kidnapped, or did Digger wander off into the mountains and become lost? 

The answer lies in a place once beyond a time - in a realm where the mysterious power of forgiveness removes sorrow and heals even the most egregious sins.

©2014 Ann Tatlock (P)2018 Ann Tatlock

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Different from her other books, but stick with it!

I almost gave up on this book. The novel is set in 1968 in a mountain town in the Carolinas. (I'm not sure which.) A family shattered by the infidelity of the pastor father moves to an old house in a sleepy little town. Linda, the 17 year old daughter is angry, cynical and can find nothing to be happy about. Her little brother, 8 year old "Digger" is a happy, sweet child. Mom and dad are holding it together but estranged. She cannot forgive his disgression.
At first I found the narrator grating, but I think she was really doing a good job of portraying a teenaged girl who is in the midst of rebellion. Though she was not my favorite, she really did a good job. I say this is different from Tatlock's other books, all of which I have read and most truly loved, because it involves an element of time travel. Member of the household see people who have lived in the house both in the past and future. All of their stories converge in the end. This is a rather mystical story of awareness, forgiveness and grace. I'm very glad I stuck with it. I will listen to another book by the narrator because I know she did a good job. In retrospect, this may become one of my faves by Tatlock, though I'll Watch the Moon is number one for me.