Translated Version from the popular German book series of Movie-Length-Stories.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is a wonderful novella. I really enjoyed it!
Yvonne Schmidt is an interesting character. I liked her a lot. She is a mother, newly arrived in the town of Seilersfeld, Bavaria, with her son Paul. Wanting to keep to herself, the local gossips think she's there to seduce their men away from them. But one man is determined to learn the truth.
Benedict Marguardt is also a wonderful character and I liked him a lot too. He is a resident of Seilersfeld and a newspaper reporter working for a newspaper in Passau. He has a deformity which some see as a disability, but he has a sharp mind and, even though he has been treated badly by some residents, he carries on as normal. When he hears the gossip about the mysterious new resident, his reporter's interest is piqued. But he also finds himself attracted to her. Determined to uncover her secrets, he digs a little deeper. However, will this lead to heartbreak or happiness?
Having previously read a couple of this author's other works, namely the first two books of his Chase series, when I heard that this book had become available, I decided to give this novella a try. I'm glad I did because I really enjoyed it.
This book is set in Bavaria in 1963, when single mothers were looked at as being odd and unwelcome in a small village. Seilersfield is a small community of people who are wary of strangers, especially pretty young women, and because Yvonne kept to herself and didn't seem to want to make friends even though she received gentlemen callers, gossip soon revolves around her sudden appearance in their town. The story is woven in such a way that, just like the residents of Seilersfield, the reader is left wondering as to why she appeared in the village. There is also a hint of romance as Yvonne and Benedict get to know each other. However, as Benedict investigates, the truth is revealed in a startling twist that I didn't see coming.
Hidden in Her Heart is a mixture of historical fiction, romance and mystery that kept me turning the pages. In a way, I wished this story had been a little bit longer than novella length, as I would have liked to have gotten to know the characters a little more. Yvonne didn't feel as real as Benedict to me, she felt more one dimensional and flat in comparison. Having said that, it is a tale of mistakes, guilt and redemption. It took me on an emotional journey (especially near the end) and I am now looking forward to reading more books in the Movie-Length series.
Thomas Dellenbusch has written an intriguing historical, romantic suspense thriller. I love his fast paced writing style, which had me turning the pages, and the flow was wonderful. I would definitely consider reading more books by this author in the future.
Although there are no explicit scenes of a sexual nature (though there is mention of it), I do not recommend this book for younger readers due to the nature of the tale. However, I highly recommend this novella if you love historical fiction/romance/thrillers/mystery/suspense genres, or you are looking for a quick, entertaining read. - Lynn Worton
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