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Satan's Garden: A Novel Kindle Edition
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
Little did I expect to be so drawn in to this story that I could barely get to work today. Stayed up most of the night reading. A bad habit to have if you want to keep the day job.
Starts out fast and draws you in. If you are a parent, this story will grip you in unexpected ways...the fears we have that things could go wrong. How you would react in these circumstances; the strength that family should bring.
This is a great book. For a first time author, Kit Lyman has done an excellent job, not only with her story but with her website, movie trailer, and the "extra things" she gives you at the end. Can't wait for the next one. highly recommended.
In September 2000, an unthinkable crime is committed in New England. Ten-year-old Dani is snatched while gathering colorful leaves of autumn. Drugged at first, she wakes to find herself detained, in the dark, with other kids, and presumably for nefarious purposes, but it’s not clear what, or why. Keely, Dani’s twin sister was with her in the woods. But she only catches a glimpse of the kidnapper, too late, and eventually Dani’s disappearance becomes a cold case.
Chapters alternate points-of-view between the two girls. Each break is the next anniversary of Dani’s abduction. We fall in love with each child for her own spirit, but come to realize they actually function as a single organism. And two hearts are stronger than one. Through the years, each sister struggles to manage without the other, accept her fate, but Keely refuses to believe her sister is dead. And Dani is a willful captive. Each of them clings to very personal shared memories—blood memories—to sustain them. It is a frightful, yet poignant, circumstance.
Crimes against children are hard to read about, and this story gets uncomfortable at times, so remember it is a tale of survival. Tension-filled, yes, but Ms. Lyman deftly eases our fear, and distress, with equal doses of hope and conviction. Satan’s Garden is solid entertainment.
"He only came for one, there and gone in the blink of an eye."
How can two ever equal three? When you are Dani and Keely, and you believe that the sum of the two of them together equal another person, it is possible. One day, one seemingly ordinary day, a man tries to alter the "three" that the twin girls had come to rely on. He comes for one twin, and leaves the other behind. What follows is a story of how two young girls learn to live without one another -- physically separated, yet never truly apart.
First thing that needs to be said: this did not read like a debut novel. The words flowed seamlessly, painting the story. There were several times that I found myself rereading passages because they were so mesmerizing. Honestly, this is one of, if not the best, debut novel I have had the pleasure of reading.
"I had always thought that death would be cold. When I reached that edge in time, straddling the line that separated me from this world and another, I prepared for it to come. I waited for the freeze to creep through my body, spoiling the ending of my own story. Instead, all I felt was consuming heat. It was a living thing inside of me, an arsonist that took shelter within my bones and reminded me of the pain one last time. I knew in that moment, I was already halfway to hell."
Because the writing was so consuming, the emotions I felt throughout this book felt infinitely more intense. There were moments I felt sad. There were moments that I felt angry. There were moments I felt hope, even when hope seemed lost. I was shocked at the intensity, and variety of emotions I experienced.
The biggest "like" I had when reading this book was discovering the depth of the characters. Keely and Dani, the two main characters, could have lost hope. At times, I would have not blamed them at all for giving up. Yet, I think they shocked even themselves by their strength of character. When the going got tough, and then tougher, they refused to give in. Not only did many characters embody a deeply engrained hope for life and themselves, but many of the characters also surprised me with the strong bonds they formed with each other. Keely, throughout the novel, is searching to find herself. During this time she neglects many of her friends. Despite this, her friends always have her back and are always there for her. I can only wish that I had those types of friends in high school. The bond between Keely and Dani, the bond between Keely and Max, the bond between Keely and Hillary; each of these bonds had a strong foundation, and carried the characters through to the end of the book.
This is a book that many different types of book-lovers would enjoy. Mother's would feel for this story. High school students would identify with this story. Anyone who enjoys a read that causes deep seated emotions would love this story. Guys, I don't know how else to say this: give this book a shot!
I would recommend this novel to those fellow fans of the thriller genre. You will not be disappointed.
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