Friday, October 19, 2012

"You Don't Know Me" Blog Tour

You Don't Know Me
(A Deep Haven Novel)
by Susan May Warren
Sometimes the secrets we keep to protect ourselves can be our undoing.
To all who know her, Annalise Decker is a model wife and mother. She’s a permanent member of the PTA, never misses a sporting event, and is constantly campaigning for her husband’s mayoral race.

No one knows that Annalise was once Deidre O’Reilly, a troubled young woman whose testimony put a dangerous criminal behind bars. Relocated through the Witness Security Program to the quaint harbor town of Deep Haven, Deidre received a new identity and a fresh start, which began when she fell in love with local real estate agent Nathan Decker.

Twenty years later, Annalise couldn’t be more unprepared for her past to catch up with her. When Agent Frank Harrison arrives with news that the man she testified against is out on parole and out for revenge, Annalise is forced to face the consequences of her secrets. Will she run again, or will she finally find the courage to trust those she loves most with both her past and her future?

Link to buy the book: 

Meet Susan:

Susan May Warren is the RITA award-winning novelist of over thirty novels. A five-time Christy award finalist and a two-time RITA Finalist, she’s also a multi-winner of the Inspirational Readers Choice award, and the ACFW Carol Award.

A seasoned women’s events speaker, she’s a popular writing teacher at conferences around the nation and the author of the beginning writer’s workbook: From the Inside-Out: discover, create and publish the novel in you!.

Find out more about Susan May at
My Take:

I have not read all of the Deep Haven novels by Susan May Warren, but I have now read three of them:  My Foolish Heart, The Shadow of Your Smile, and this one. Oh, and a novella that took place in Deep Haven - Hook, Line, & Sinker.

The premise of this novel drew me in immediately, much like the amnesia story in The Shadow of Your Smile. I was fascinated to see how a story of someone in Witness Protection would play out. I really enjoyed the beginning of the book, too - getting to know the characters and falling back into the setting of Deep Haven, Minnesota - it was interesting and intriguing.

Towards the middle, however, I started to realize that this book was not going to focus on the "action" part of the book as much as the "emotions" part of the book. Now, I am not against exploring characters and their thoughts and feelings - sometimes this makes for a really good read - but other times I just get too bogged down in it. And also, because of the feeling-oriented plot, when that part of the story came to a head, everything just seemed to spin unrealistically out-of-control.

I also thought it was distracting having the book come from six different points-of-view - Annalise's, Nathan's, Frank's, Helen's, Tucker's, and (for only one scene) Colleen's. I understand that this gives you a full view of what was going on, but it was just too much for me. I think this is what contributed to me not relating very well with the characters, especially with Annalise (I just kept getting so tired of her inner monologues and her immature actions).

The character I actually liked the best was poor Tucker. The Decker family's judgmental attitude toward this kid (who was pretty much on his own) made me so angry. They were supposed to be the "Christians," and yet they immediately wrote him off because he was "from the wrong side of the tracks." Now, I have a daughter, and I know that when her teenager years roll around, I will be concerned about who she hangs out with and who she dates. I might even be found to be extremely overprotective! But I also hope that I will be able to extend compassion to anyone who comes into her life, and I pray that I will be able reach out to the Tuckers in her life instead of writing them off.

Which leads to another thing that disappointed me about this book. This family was supposed to be a Christian family, but their lives were filled with deceit and secrets and bitterness and judgmental attitudes. They did not seem to look to the Bible to know how to live their lives. I know that no one is perfect and that those of us who have accepted Christ are sinners who have been saved by grace. However, in the lives of these characters, their faith didn't seem to be real, even at the end of the book. The name 'Jesus' was only mentioned once in the entire book. (I have a Kindle, so I can do a search...)

I realize that I am getting on my soapbox here and that perhaps I am expecting too much from a fiction novel, but I am increasingly becoming more and more frustrated with Christian fiction novels that leave Christ pretty much out of the picture.

All of that being said (sorry for my rant), I really liked the ending of the book. The Witness Protection part of this book at the beginning and at the end was great and the "action" ending (if not the spiritual ending) was very satisfying.

I may or may not continue with the Deep Haven novels. There are a lot of things I like about them, but I have enjoyed Ms. Warren's historical novels a lot more. So, I may just stick with them:  Baby, It's Cold Outside, Heiress, and Baroness .

I will give You Don't Know Me ... 3 BookWorms.

If you like novels that explore the character side more than an action side, then you might like You Don't Know Me. Don't just take my word for it. See what other reviewers are saying here.

Welcome to the campaign launch for Susan May Warren's latest offering in her beloved Deep Haven series, You Don't Know Me. Susan is celebrating with a $200 Weekend Getaway Giveaway and hosting a fun video Author Chat Party!


One fortunate winner will receive:
  • A $200 Visa Gift Card (Use that to catch up with a loved one and “Get to Know” your spouse, friend, sister, mom…whomever!)
  • The entire set of Deep Haven Books
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 22nd. Winner will be announced at the ”You Don’t Know Me” Author Chat Facebook Party on 10/23. Connect with Susan for an evening of book chat, Deep Haven trivia, and a live video chat! There will also be info about Susan’s BookShout read-along and a chance to win gift certificates, books, and other fun prizes!

So grab your copy of You Don’t Know Me and join Susan on the evening of the October 23rd for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the books – don’t let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun, RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 23rd!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers through Litfuse Publicity. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this is accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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