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Steal Away [Paperback]

Linda Hall
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

May 2 2003 Teri Blake-Addison Mystery (Book 1)
Dr. Carl Houseman, celebrated minister and speaker, is determined to find out what really happened to his wife, declared dead five years ago after her sailboat washed ashore on a coastal island of Maine. Private investigator Terri Blake-Addison must piece together the life of this woman who felt she didn't know or understand the God that her husband so faithfully served. Did Ellen really die in those cold Atlantic waters? When a murder rocks the island, Terri knows more is at stake than just the puzzling life of an unhappy minister's wife.

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From Booklist

With Steal Away, Hall begins the Teri Blake-Addison mystery series, featuring the aforementioned Teri, a newly married PI whose requisite quirks are so mild they don't seem worth committing to paper. However, the case--whatever happened to the wife of a famous evangelist--is puzzling and absorbing to the end, and it results in a kind of examination of the dedicated religious life. So the series may march on, but Teri could do with a bit of jazzing up. John Mort
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

About the Author

Linda Hall is the author of eight novels, including the bestselling Margaret's Peace, and seven nonfiction works. A fiction writing teacher and former journalist and English teacher, she grew up in a pastor's home in New Jersey and attended Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, where she met her Canadian husband, Rik. The couple live in Fredericton, New Brunswick, and have two grown children.

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Yes," Teri said to Jack on Saturday morning. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By NB Gal
If you're looking for a mystery that you won't be able to put down, read Steal Away! Linda Hall's best book yet. This novel is complex, compelling, and the story is intricately woven into the lives of the exceptional characters Ms. Hall has created. The mystery will grab you and keep you guessing until the very satisfactory ending. Personalities spring to life throughout this book, each of them with their own set of problems and secrets, which build the escalating mystery to a fine pitch. This is the best book I've read in years. I can't wait for Ms. Hall's next book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful! Sept. 15 2003
By Nancy
This was such a fun book to read! I was hooked from the first line. I like the fact that Ms. Hall uses some actual locations in her stories. This was a great mystery story and I'm looking forward to the next book of the series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The First In A Great New Series by Linda Hall! July 1 2003
Like all of Linda Hall's mysteries, Steal Away is a wonderful story penned along uncharted territories of new and unknown paths that are trodden with intrigue and suspense-a weaving of twists and turns that nearly make you dizzy...nearly. Steal Away is peopled with believable personalities which communicate the complexities of life: love, guilt, shame, pain and sorrow, regrets, greed, betrayal, compassion and joy. Clues are dropped thoughtfully throughout the story. Thanks for a great read Linda, I look forward to the next installment!
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4.0 out of 5 stars A great mystery May 28 2004
By lor369
This was a great mystery. The author did a great job in presenting a mystery with so many questions to be answered. What happened to Ellen? Was she alive? Who was the mysterious Garda and her daughter. Why was Ellen so unhappy? And mixed in with the main story was Teri, the PI who was trying to solve the mystery for Ellen's husband Carl. She is struggling to fit in with the church, as well as struggling with the ghost of her husband, Jack's 1st wife.
The book not only presented a great mystery of betrayal and deception, but demonstrated the theme of grace and forgiveness. The book showed that no matter how far you stray from God, forgiveness is always there, no matter how "big" the sin is.
I do think that some things were rushed towards the end. What happened to Jimmy Jarvis? There was some speculation, but nothing was really resolved. Maybe that is just one of those things that will leave the readers guessing. Also, what happened to Audrey towards the end?
I would have liked to see the marriage between Teri and Jack explored more. I know that Teri felt that she was competing with the ghost of Jack's first wife. Maybe this will be explored in future books in the series.
Again, a great mystery book! I look forward to reading Chat Room.
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An attractive, well-thought-of minister's wife in Philadelphia, a woman who grew up on the water, is missing. Her sailboat, with two close friends aboard has gone unreported. Now her widower, Dr. Carl Houseman, wants some answers. He turns to private investigator Terri Blake-Addison, a scrappy woman who pulls few punches and has a clear understanding of her limitations. No superwoman here, just real folks.
There is a problem. Terri is locked in a distracting process with members of her church because she wants to teach Sunday school and there are apparently some who object. Other problems occur. Dr. Houseman is the head of a vast and growing media ministry that's finally worth a whole lot of money. And, the case is already old; his wife died five years ago.
Blake-Addison takes the assignment and follows the trail to a remote Maine village where Ellen grew up and where she apparently died. The more the investigator probes and peels back old and new secrets, the more complex becomes the picture. Author Hall has done a first rate job of balancing two interesting threads and keeping the reader aware of their intersections. Why did Ellen Houseman become unhappy in her role in the Houseman Empire? How much antipathy and jealousy were present in the second rank of executives? How did the secret relationships among residents and visitors in the tiny Maine village affect Ellen and her friends? What really happened to Ellen Houseman?
The exploration of religious empire building and the very human intercepts played out against the tiny but important individual crises and triumphs in Maine is enthralling and constantly interesting. Hall has done a fine job with this book.
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The defining moment in Teri Blake Addison's life came when she was fourteen years old and her mother went out to do grocery shopping. She never came home and the police thought she was abducted because her car was found in the grocery parking lot. Several years later Tori becomes a police officer and then a private detective specializing in missing person cases. At age of thirty-eight she married the love of her life, widower Jack Addison, an English professor and fellow Christian.
Her latest client is world famous televangelist and foremost Christian apologist Dr. Carl Houseman who founded the rich congregation Houseman Ministries. He is getting married again five years after his wife was killed in a boating accident but before he puts an end to that period in his life he wants Teri to find out his wife's state of mind in her last days. Teri's investigation takes an unexpected turn when she comes upon a reclusive living on Grand Maran Island living with her twenty something mentally challenged daughter.
This novel will STEAL AWAY the reader from the ordinary world and transport them into the pages of this fascinating tale of portrayal, redemption and second chances. Without getting preachy, this mystery within a mystery focuses on the premise no sin is too big to be unforgivable if the person genuinely regrets what they have done (difficult to accept for many people). The protagonist is a likable person who does her job without alienating others and has such an honest personality that people open up to her. This is the first installment in what looks like a good mystery series.
Harriet Klausner
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