A Darkly Hidden Truth

A Darkly Hidden Truth

by Donna Fletcher Crow

Paperback

$14.99

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780857210500
Publisher: Lion Hudson
Publication date: 12/01/2011
Series: Monastery Murders Series , #2
Pages: 366
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Donna Fletcher Crow is author of more than thirty-five novels. She has twice won first place in the Historical Fiction category from the National Association of Press Women, and has also been a finalist for "Best Inspirational Novel" from the Romance Writers of America. She is a member of The Arts Centre Group, and Sisters in Crime. www.donnafletchercrow.com

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A Darkly Hidden Truth 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Squeex on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Even more than the mystery in the story, I enjoyed the history lesson I received while reading the book.I love reading historical amateur sleuth books like the Brother Cadfael series by Ellis Peters or the Hawkenlye mystery series by Alys Clare. I don't understand all of the religious information, but I can enjoy the flow of it and the life occurring as the story rolls along. It was the same with A DARKLY HIDDEN TRUTH. It read just like a historical mystery, but it is set in modern times. Since I was not raised with organized religion, I didn't get all of the religious ceremonial bits, but it didn't keep me from enjoying the mystery. It only enhanced the story, especially as Father Antony is a teacher and enjoyed relating bits of history to Felicity. I look forward to reading more of this series and I am on the lookout for the book before this one, A VERY PRIVATE GRAVE. Thank you to Library Thing with another fab book to read and review.Five English beans......
delphimo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the second book of the Monastery Mystery series set in current day England with a parallel story in early, religious England. Crow delves too thoroughly into church history and religious practices. The parallel story is about Gillian/Julian set in 1370's who becomes an anchoress. An anchoress is a woman who renounces the world and secludes herself for religious reasons. Felicity hears Julian's story as Father Antony and Felicity investigate murder and the disappearance of church icons. Along the way, Felicity and her mother, Cynthia, learn to appreciate one another. I feel at a loss many times for not knowing more about church history and feel that one needs to be a priest to understand what is happening.
reading_crystal on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What a fun and different mystery to read. I did not read the first in The Monastery Murders, but I will be going back to read it because I am enamored with Felicity and Father Antony. Ms. Crow has quickly become a must-read after one book.I loved Felicity and Father Antony. There is a buzz of attraction between the two of them. Father Antony is sure of how he feels, but Felicity is conflicted because she is pretty sure she wants to become a nun. I liked this added possible romance. It made their working together more interesting and their interactions more plausible to me. They worked well together. I also liked the fact that Felicity is an American in England. I understood her on that level and it made the book easier to understand for us Americans. Sometimes I get lost in British-speak, but I didn't have that problem in this book. Father Antony is great as well. He loves to solve mysteries, he loves his calling and he's falling in love with Felicity. He's a great character and I liked watching him develop in this book. There is definitely some back story in the first book between these two, but I never felt lost in this book. Ms. Crow goes into the back story briefly but enough that those of us that pick up the second book have no trouble getting into it and understanding the characters. I really appreciated this fact and it made reading this book very enjoyable.The plot moves along at a great pace. Interspersing the action with some history that helps Father Antony and Felicity solve the mystery really made the book for me. I love the history of things like the Templars, and other groups associated with the church. But this is not another Da Vinci Code, it's completely different, so don't worry about that. I loved her angle and how the plot moved. I must say I didn't see several things coming and that was great as well.Combining interesting characters, fascinating history and an interesting murder mystery, Donna Fletcher Crow was able to grab my attention within the first few pages of A Darkly Hidden Truth and I had a hard time putting the book down until I turned the very last page. I look forward to going back and reading the first book in the series and I also look forward to future books as well. Ms. Crow just has a way of writing that draws you in and makes you interested in the story and I really enjoyed that. Plus the British setting was an added plus for me. I haven't read as much British fiction so gaining a little knowledge of the countryside was great for me. If you love mysteries then I suggest you give this series a try. You can start with the first book, or start with A Darkly Hidden Truth which I thoroughly enjoyed.
thornton37814 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the second in Crow's monastery series featuring Felicity and Antony. Icons are going missing from various religious communities in England. It appears that there is a connection to Julian of Norwich, St. John of the Cross, and various persons from medieval English church history. Father Antony has been asked to look into the disappearances, and he asks Felicity for assistance. To complicate matters, Felicity's mother has arrived from the United States and wants to spend time with her daughter. Felicity has been investigating convents to see which one might be the best fit for the vows she is considering making. Felicity is not thrilled with the thought of spending time with a mother who had so little time for her when she was growing up. In the meantime, one of their friends has stumbled across something to do with missing icons. Before Antony can arrive, the friend is murdered. Will Antony and Felicity be able to figure this one out before one or both of them turn up dead?I enjoyed the mystery immensely, but I do think there are quite a few problems with it. I believe the author lost her focus on the mystery and got bogged down in the details of medieval (and Renaissance) English church history. I felt that the narrative was bogged down for about the first 2/3 of the book and then suddenly it became almost thriller-like with scenes that would make an outstanding motion picture. I love church history, so it probably did not bother me as much as it would readers who have no interest. It is certainly not a mystery for everyone. Possible spoiler ahead: One of the key players in the solution of the mystery was someone that I had trouble even identifying. The author definitely should have developed this character a bit more. Crow's writing is, as usual, a step above that of most Christian fiction writers.This book was received through LibraryThing's Early Reviewer program with the expectation that a review would be written.
Sarah_Bailey on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I had the pleasure of reading the first book in this series, A Very Private Grave, and was so excited to be able to read the second book, A Darkly Hidden Truth. From the first page the mystery begins, well maybe not the first page, but it¿s definitely fast in coming from the get go. With the missing friend who eventually turns up murdered, some things are eerily reminiscent of the first book, such as jaunts to far flung places in search of answers to the mystery, however that does not detract from this book and actually adds to the feel.Getting to visit Antony and Felicity again is like visiting some old friends, who are unlikely matched up to help in finding missing icons and eventually solving the murder of their friend. Twists and turns through old priories and visits with different types of convents make the pages come alive as if you¿re standing there yourself visiting these places and people.The book has a lot to offer even those who don¿t enjoy a mystery book, as the book is also chock full of history from the Catholic Church, and even those who aren¿t Catholic will enjoy the history given in this book. As all histories tend to intertwine at points and we all share a common bond. I found it fascinating how many different sects (not sure if that is a good use of the word) of convents there are ¿ some are active and modern while some still wear habits and are secluded from society. So Donna Fletcher Crow has another hit book on her hands ¿ full of mystery, intrigue, history and even a little romance it has something for everyone.**I was provided a copy of this book from Kregel Publishing in exchange for my honest review, no other compensation was given.
Dejah_Thoris on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A Darkly Hidden Truth is the second of Donna Fletcher Crow¿s Monastery Murders series. Felicity, currently an Ordinand at a theological college in Yorkshire, has decided she wants to become an Anglican nun. When Father Antony, a lecturer in Church History with whom she worked closely to solve a murder in the first Monastery Murder novel A Very Private Grave, is asked to look into the disappearance of an important icon he asks Felicity to help him. She declines. Nevertheless, the two are quickly caught up in the search for several missing religious art works and, eventually, a murderer.Donna Fletcher Crow writes both Christian Fiction and Non Fiction, and her tremendous knowledge of history is readily apparent in A Darkly Hidden Truth. It¿s filled with fascinating information from Roman Catholic and Anglican Church history, visits to important religious spots and interesting discussions of Anglican sisterhoods. And while I didn¿t care for the imagined scenes from the life Julien of Norwich, she herself was fascinating and I appreciated that the fictional scenes presented were clearly stated to be speculative. Unfortunately, the mystery in this story is frankly secondary to the history and the travelogue. Readers primarily looking for a cozy mystery will probably be disappointed, but those who have a strong interest in the religious aspects of the tale probably won¿t mind.The single biggest problem I had with A Darkly Hidden Truth was the main character, Felicity. She¿s idiotically impulsive, rather flaky and presented as shockingly ignorant for someone who¿s spent eight months at a theological seminary. I know it¿s just a device to deliver information to the reader, but I found it impossible to believe that any theological student in England, particularly a woman, would be so unfamiliar with Julien of Norwich. While I found Felicity less annoying as the novel progressed, I never really warmed to her; I don¿t know what Father Antony sees in her.
Draak on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
"Felicity has decided to become a nun. She departs to visits convents in spite of ther mother's imminent arrival and Fr. Anselm's request that she and Fr. Antony recover a missing priceless Russian icon before the Patriarch of Moscow arrives at the ommunity for Holy Week".This was a good read but as it was the 2nd in a series I think I would have done better if I had read the first one, All in all still a good read. I won this from Goodreads.
jjlangel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
First, I highly recommend that you not start this series with this book. The main character is a fairly appealing character with occasional childish periods, and the author begins this book with one of them. I found her so unappealing that I put the book away for several weeks, but now that I know the character better, I might be willing to read another book in the series. Except...This is a very good book about a somewhat immature woman coming to know herself and her mother against the background of some mother-themed religious history. Well written, good characters, nice dialog. Unfortunately, the author elected to throw in an extremely badly done mystery. I'm afraid I can't forgive a mystery where the "detectives" search for a reputable professional by printing a list of museums off the Internet and then visiting each one in person to ask if he works there. Or who "investigate" a site by taking a public tour. Or ... But you get the idea. It's hard for me to know how to help you know whether you'll like this one. I suppose that if you are interested in England and English religious history, you might enjoy it. If you are looking for good mystery, look elsewhere.
pmarshall on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I selected ¿A Darkly Hidden Truth¿ by Donna Fletcher Crow from Early Reviewers, January 2012, because from the blurb I thought it was an ecclesiastical mystery. I started to read it a number of times but I couldn¿t get past flighty Felicity and her approach to life; e.g., deciding to become an Anglican nun because her love, Anthony, was going to be a monk. By the way this is the current day side of the novel, in the historical side I learned about an anchoress. An anchoress is a woman who has retired into seclusion for religious reasons. In this case the seclusion is a cell build onto a church wall with the nun inside. In Crow¿s book the anchoress is based on the medieval anchoress is Julian of Norwich whose writings have left a lasting impression on Christian spirituality. All Saints' Church in King's Lynn, Norfolk, still has its original 12th century Anchorhold, intact and still very much in use during the daily worship of the church.While Felicity is going around the country on retreats to test her vocation she also becomes involved in seeking the person who is stealing church icons with Anthony and another friend. Meanwhile her mother arrives from America to further complicate matters. Throw in a murder and you have a cozy, Christian fiction mystery. Many will enjoy it just not me.
MyBookAddiction on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A DARKLY HIDDEN TRUTH by Donna Fletcher Crow is a fast paced historical mystery. This is book 2 in ¿The Monastery Murders¿,but can be read as a stand alone. See,¿A Very Private Grave¿. Spend a year or two in England¿s countryside as you travel with Felicity and Antony into the a world of mystery,murder,church history,a missing icon,the Knights of Hospitalier,and with a bit of romance. Written with vivid descriptions,full of England¿s church history,and rich characters. Ms. Crow weaves medieval history with modern murder and mystery.A must read for anyone interested in history,christianity,mystery,and a bit of romance. Received for an honest review. Details can be found at the author¿s website,Pump Up Your Books, Monarch Books,and My Book Addiction and More. RATING: 4 HEAT:Sweet: No sex or scenes of physical intimacy except some kissing. No graphic violence or profanity. REVIEWED BY: AprilR, My Book Addiction and More
readerbynight on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book begins with an interesting history, based on legend and fact about the Anchoress, Julian of Norwich, "enclosed" in c1375 AD at the Church of St. Julian the Hospitaller. From this prologue the story begins. Now partially in ruins the Church has been restored several times, and the current building is a reconstruction, including the cell from which Julian gave her advice. The story is dispersed throughout the book as a background theme, mainly as reconstructed as the Church itself, but still based on her writings. A bit of a slow start I thought, but mostly because I felt Felicity, the main character, to be rather flighty, a little over-the-top with her spontaneous changes of direction and emotions, but these become an asset later in the book. The main story takes place during Lent and the icon for their monastery must be returned by Easter. As Felicity struggles to grasp what her feelings are toward becoming a nun she tries to understand what Julian's devotion and seclusion felt. She must also question her increasing feelings for Antony. She has been advised to go on retreat to some convents of various types to learn her true feelings about becoming a nun, a "discernment" of sorts. What is her true reasoning? Is she too attached to the world? Is she running from her feelings of abandonment by her mother? And after so many years of her mother's focus on work rather than her daughter, why is she suddenly coming to visit?This is not just a book of religion however, there is a mystery afoot, the theft of religious icons, the disappearance of a friend, history, mystery, murder and mayhem, all are part and parcel of this, the second in the Monastery Murders series. The main story takes place during Lent and the icon for their monastery must be returned by Easter. What is the meaning of the Maltese crosses on the backs of these icons? This question thrusts Felicity and Antony, her good friend and partner in Book 1, right into the world of the mysterious Knights of Malta, the Knights Hospitaller. Well researched, descriptive, compelling and creative, Donna Fletcher Crow really knows how to grab her audience. I learned some fascinating history while enjoying this fast-paced mystery.
SheilaDeeth More than 1 year ago
Brother Cadfael meets Agatha Christie I’ve just been reading excerpts from Julian of Norwich’s writing. How enormously satisfying to open a novel that begins with a reminder of the woman (and daughter of a woman) behind the words! Meanwhile in the present day, there's a young American Felicity, rebellious church reject now studying her new-found faith in England and considering becoming a nun; a handsome Anglican priest with a wonderful way of describing and explaining church history, an obvious passion for his calling and a certain interest in said woman; the mysticism and beauty of ancient icons; the longing for church unity; and more… It all combines into a mystery adventure with danger, beauty and drama, gorgeously evocative in its descriptions of English sacred places, woven with haunting memories of the past, and enlivened with great side-characters and wonderful dialog A visit from Felicity’s estranged mother prompts thoughts of what lies behind love and loyalty. Secrets of the past begin to heal memories of the present. And the future beckons. Will Father Anthony and Felicity find the thief before anyone else is murdered? Will Felicity manage to choose between love of God and that elusively gentle romance, or are both possible? And what has Julian of Norwich got to do with it? A pleasing novel that combines English and American characters, genuine faith, well-researched history and wonderfully evocative locations with murder and mayhem, this one’s got me hooked. Now I need to find, and find time to read book one, and three, and... a perfect read for any fan of Brother Cadfael and Agatha Christie. Disclosure: I won a free copy of this novel from the author. Lucky me!!! Now I’m hooked.
MyBookAddictionandMore More than 1 year ago
A DARKLY HIDDEN TRUTH by Donna Fletcher Crow is a fast paced historical mystery. This is book 2 in "The Monastery Murders",but can be read as a stand alone. See,"A Very Private Grave". Spend a year or two in England's countryside as you travel with Felicity and Antony into the a world of mystery,murder,church history,a missing icon,the Knights of Hospitalier,and with a bit of romance. Written with vivid descriptions,full of England's church history,and rich characters. Ms. Crow weaves medieval history with modern murder and mystery.A must read for anyone interested in history,christianity,mystery,and a bit of romance. Received for an honest review. Details can be found at the author's website,Pump Up Your Books, Monarch Books,and My Book Addiction and More. RATING: 4 HEAT:Sweet: No sex or scenes of physical intimacy except some kissing. No graphic violence or profanity. REVIEWED BY: AprilR, My Book Addiction and More
MKReviews More than 1 year ago
A Reader's Opinion: Let me begin by saying that I found this book both, interesting and enjoyable - simply put, I liked it. Let me explain. I know nothing of Catholicism, very little of the Church of England, or to be honest, a majority of the religious references and history mentioned in this book. Before reading, I was aware that I would run into a lot of unfamiliar information and I believe that is what allowed me to enjoy the book as much as I did. There were times when I felt there was too much delving into the religious aspect, but I read those sections more like I was in a university class, so I found it interesting. Antony was by far my favorite character. He's kind, chivalrous and unassuming, but certainly not boring. His humble demeanor was balanced out with noticeable charm and I found myself smiling each and every time he winked or grinned at Felicity. Our heroine, Felicity was an enigma in the first third of the book. I couldn't decide if I liked her or was just putting up with her. As the story progressed, Felicity proved to be a worthy heroine - a modern personality warring with the search for some higher purpose. She found her footing halfway through and began to show her strength and determination. Her personality seemed to shine through more as the story progressed and I became immersed in both the intellectual and romantic relationship between her and Antony. Then there's the murder and mystery - well plotted, well developed and not entirely predictable. I'll admit that one of the culprits was a complete surprise to me. I had gone along thinking I knew everyone who did it and where I figured out most, I appreciated that the author could twist enough to keep me on my mental toes. The amazing amount of research the author did for this book is apparent. In fact there were passages when I felt I was being taught - for some readers that may be a bother, so read the book knowing what you're getting into. If I hadn't known, I may not have enjoyed it as much. As it was, I finished the book in a few days because it held my attention and I was interested in the outcome. This is the second book of the Monastery Series and not having read the first yet, I can't say how one flows into the next, but I would recommend this book to any intellectual reader who enjoys a good whodunit and learning something in the process. FTC Disclaimer: In accordance with FTC guidelines for bloggers and endorsements, I would like to clarify that the books reviewed on An Avid Reader's Haven are provided by the publisher/author free of charge. I am neither compensated for my reviews nor are my opinions influenced in any way by the avenues in which I obtain my materials.
YettaCR More than 1 year ago
A Darkly Hidden Truth (The Monastery Murders) [Paperback] by Donna Fletcher Crow “A Darkly Hidden Truth,” the second of Donna Fletcher Crow’s “Monastery Murders” series, follows the progress of young headstrong Felicity, our heroine. An American student in Britain, she has decided she wants to become (right now!) a nun – never considering the consequences of this whim: for herself or for those who love her. This is a book exploring passions: for life, for art, for family, for mammon, for tradition, for the sacramental and for the imperfectly human, set in the present and the past, in a place where these realms intermix and meld. It’s a tale of Icons, of the Knights Hospitalier (Templars), of kings, villains and saints, of ancient and contemporary plots and schemes, woven into an easily accessible tapestry where history is fascinating and relevant, featuring a likable flawed heroine and the empathetic man (Father Anthony) who is falling in love with her. Buy it for the setting and the history; it will take you on a pilgrimage to places you never knew you wanted to go, and make you want to visit them “for real.” The delightful map, the Anglican glossary and the time line at the beginning of the book are welcome. They make the “journey” come alive and should be especially useful for those unfamiliar with the Anglican (Episcopal, in the US) Church, its customs and regalia. But buy it for the story. For the well-drawn characters who evolve as the plot unfurls. This is a gentle tale, despite the murders. Charmingly chaste. On the surface, at least. What lies below that layer, I’m not about to tell. FTC Guidelines disclosure, I must state that I was given a copy of the book, "A Darkly Hidden Truth: The Monastery Murders" from the publisher in exchange for my review. My opinions are expressly my own, and are in no way influenced positively or negatively, because of receiving this book in exchange for the review.
A_Cluttered_Mind More than 1 year ago
My wife, Ann, read this book and thoroughly enjoyed it. Here, for the purposes of this review, I interview her about A Darkly Hidden Truth: Who were your favorite characters in this story? Antony and Felicity, most definitely. Oh, and Felicity’s mother, Cynthia too. I liked her. Why? Part of my interest in these two was the relationship they had with each other. They’re in a relationship that is uncertain from the beginning. In fact, as the book begins, they don’t even really know IF they’re in a relationship. The interplay between the two, the questions they ask of themselves and the circumstances they are thrown into make you follow this all the way through to the end of the book. And even then, you’re left hanging about where this couple might end up. Did you find the plot engaging? How so? Yes, very much. There’s so much history going on here in this story, it’s no wonder this mystery was so difficult to solve. It almost seemed like Antony and Felicity were caught up in the flow of the historical, trying to gleans clues. I also got caught up in how Felicity, who is trying to find her path in life––whether to become a nun or not––ends up at all these spiritual centers and the plot just wraps itself around her. Were there characters you didn’t enjoy? Why? Oh, I didn’t like Cyril, almost from the beginning. Something about him made me feel creepy. And when one of the other key characters in the story gets caught in his web of deceit, I really wanted to jump in and rescue that person. What did you think of the relationship between Antony and Felicity? I think until Felicity could even figure out and explore the options for her own life, she really didn’t know what the relationship could be. Sometimes you need to come to a crisis in your life to figure these things out. A crisis happens to her, via Antony, that brings this into very stark focus. The relationship between Felicity and her mother, Cynthia, is not in the best of shape. As a mother, how did this affect you? I don’t think Cynthia backed down from the hard questions or accusations her own daughter would ask or make. Cynthia was willing to take the heat and explain herself. She even expresses a measure of regret at how things had been. Cynthia is clearly a very strong woman of clear convictions; when she sets her mind to something, she’s going to do it. And, at times, Felicity realizes she has misjudged her mother regarding some things and there is movement toward forgiveness and reconciliation in the story line. Did you find yourself wishing you’d read the first book in the series in order to stay up with the plot here? No, I didn’t need to have read the first one. I know there are connections, but I could read this as a stand alone novel. You may not know much about a previous murder that brought these two together in this book, but that doesn’t affect your reading here. Would you read the next book in the series? Oh yes. I would like to read that one too because I want to know what happens next in the relationship between Antony and Felicity. There are far too many open questions in A Darkly Hidden Truth for me to know where it will go next.
IYamVixenBooks More than 1 year ago
Even more than the mystery in the story, I enjoyed the history lesson I received while reading the book. I love reading historical amateur sleuth books like the Brother Cadfael series by Ellis Peters or the Hawkenlye mystery series by Alys Clare. I don't understand all of the religious information, but I can enjoy the flow of it and the life occurring as the story rolls along. It was the same with A DARKLY HIDDEN TRUTH. It read just like a historical mystery, but it is set in modern times. Since I was not raised with organized religion, I didn't get all of the religious ceremonial bits, but it didn't keep me from enjoying the mystery. It only enhanced the story, especially as Father Antony is a teacher and enjoyed relating bits of history to Felicity. I look forward to reading more of this series and I am on the lookout for the book before this one, A VERY PRIVATE GRAVE. Five English beans......
StephenHiggins More than 1 year ago
This was my first Donna Fletcher Crow read. It will not be my last. Compelling characters and a chase through England that made me want to visit every historical site mentioned. I couldn't put it down.