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Customer Reviews for Multnomah Books Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1

Multnomah Books Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1

Gracie Ann Lane is being watched by a man who will stop at nothing to hide the truth from her. Having lost the only man she ever loved and the children who were her world, the truth is all Gracie wants, an explanation for what really happened. She longs to move forward but is bound by chains of fear. Then she meets Steven Kessler, an FBI agent assigned to uncover an international plot to kidnap the British Ambassador s daughter. Steven awakens more than memories; he revives the possibility of a life Gracie desires. A life where healing and peace crowd out the nightmares. But his case and her past are dangerously connected. Suddenly, Gracie must decide if she's able, let alone willing to pay the required ransom to redeem dreams and restore hope.
Average Customer Rating:
4.667 out of 5
4.7
 out of 
5
(18 Reviews) 18
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Rating Snapshot (18 reviews)
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Customer Reviews for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Review 1 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:January 4, 2010
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Stephanie Kingdon
Ransomed Dreams is my first ever Amy Wallace book. You first meet Gracie and learn about the tragic events of her family's death and how she's looking for justice for them. Then there's Steven whom you meet and learn that he works for the FBI and helps to find missing and exploited children. He struggles with his faith because he was burned by his ex. He doesn't want to get burned again and you can see the struggles that he's up against. He looks to his best friend Clint and his dad for help and understanding of what he's feeling and why a case isn't working out the way he wants it too. He meets Gracie and helps her find justice for her family and losses his heart to her in the process. You see how his faith stumbles and by the end you see that he finds his way back to God and finds a special lady to spend his life with. I love happy ending books and how everything always works out for people.
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Review 2 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 4, 2008
I give this book, and author 5 stars. This is an excellent book & series. Great plot, characters, lots of drama and excitement. She is right up there with Dee Henderson and Kathy Herman.
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Review 3 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Date:July 6, 2008
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Creative Madness Mama
I have to start this review with my disclaimer as I do for many.. I just do not really like the "real" contemporary fiction books, they are not my "escape". With that said, when I started this book it was just so real and heart wrenching that I was going to put it back and not even try to read it. But, I couldn't. No matter how bad I was feeling and the facts of the storyline depressing, I just had to know what happened. I couldn't put it down and had to find out what would happen to Gracie and her life. So, obviously, Amy's writing hooked me. I'd say that the type of story is much like that Justice series of Karen Ball. They are similar in that they touch many aspects of life and a very true to reality. I did enjoy the overall story, with getting to the end. The message of Christ's love and forgiveness throughout is very refreshing and great to see in a "real" environment, since so often in life it appears to be only quietly present.Now for my rant. Parts that I did not like were that it seemed nobody was in their original marriage. In this story there was a widower remarried, a wife who abandoned her husband and remarried her adulterous partner, a woman living out of wed-lock with her children's father, and then hints at other remarriages. Just one couple it seemed to be married to their original spouse. Overall, the message is great, and I do think this book would appeal to the reader who enjoys the edgy storyline. There are cops and criminals, death and life, some romance and Christ's love and a great message. This is a book that would probably appeal also to those outside of the normal "Christian Fiction" genre, because it is not the flowery and overly preachy sort, but it is still present.
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Review 4 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:April 16, 2008
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Sandra Cavellini
The story line was interestingly okay. What I really liked was the development of each of the main characters from pain to forgiveness and how that journey brought them closer to God.
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Review 5 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:April 4, 2008
Gracie Lang is following her husband to her parents house when she sees a truck come out of nowhere and hit the van and kill her husband and two children. She is obsessed with tracking the killer down and finds she cannot find peace until she does. But this leads to her being shot, kidnapped and finally in the end forgiving the killer. What is odd is that she does not know she is worker along the killer at the school.Steven Kessler, an FBI Agent, is reeling with his wife leaving him when their son is born and trying to raise a son while working as a single Dad. His wife later returns and Steven finds it hard to forever her. It is interesting the way Amy takes all her characters and their lives come together to affect each other. Sometimes we do not realize how one single event will affect others lives.This is a story about questions we ask God, finding hope again, and learning to forgive. I was going through some rough waters and this book offered me renewed hope.
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Review 6 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:August 10, 2007
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Sharon Hinck
Ransomed Dreams grabbed me by the throat in the first few pages, and kept me entertained with a complex interweaving plot. I was especially impressed with the authentic feel of the FBI interactions. But beyond the external storyline, Ransomed Dreams also whispered themes of healing and hope. The characters wrestle with honest questions and face the limits of their own attempts to deal with pain. The authors core focus of heart healing is portrayed with compassion and power.
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Review 7 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:July 3, 2007
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Michelle Sutton
Ransomed Dreams has a gut-wrenching beginning. I cried when Gracie's family was wiped out in a tragic car accident. In fact, I needed a breather from the story because it made me so sad. Then I picked up the story again and the action pulled me right back in. Gracie's quest to determine who killed her family intersected with Steven's case--the plot to kidnap the British ambassador's daughter. Several points of view showed a variety of perspectives, all of which increased the tension in the story because you knew what certain people were thinking. The "bad guys" were twisted, yet believable in their perspectives. The author did a great job creating further intrigue that way. And the romantic element between Gracie and Steve was delectable.Steven's ex and the subplot involving his son really grabbed my heart and my attention. I felt the hopelessness that both Steven and Gracie experienced at times, ultimately resulting in them having to do some soul-searching in regards to their relationship with God and His will for their lives. The theme of forgiveness was also very well done and believable. The reader will wrestle the characters' pain right along with them. There are no quick fixes and this story doesn't offer any, but it does give you a glimpse into the pain and struggles of the characters, and it shows the tender love and firm grip that God had on their lives, and has on the lives of all of His children.
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Review 8 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:June 16, 2007
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Alisa B
I was captivated by the characters, appreciated the reminder that others are watching and my walk does matter. I was mystified and kept guessing until the end and I am excited and anticipating the next installment of this series. Buy this book!
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Review 9 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:May 17, 2007
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Judy Grivas
Ransomed Dreams, by Amy Wallace, is a fast-paced read. We cant help but feel Gracie Langs horrific pain as she suffers the greatest loss a wife and mother can experience. We follow her attempts to find justice and her fledgling efforts to try to return to a normal lifea life that may also once again include (after meeting FBI agent Steven Kessler) experiencing the love of a family. This is a wonderful book, full of intrigue as well as being a love story. As you follow the twists and turns of the plot youll find it impossible to put this book down! I highly recommend it.
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Review 10 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:May 1, 2007
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Niki Nowell
I had a hard time putting this book down. Im new to the Romantic Suspense genre. What a way to be broken into this particular area of Christian Fiction! Amys characters are rich and believable. I found myself cheering them on and as they took steps on their journeys of Faith, I saw my own steps towards understanding how and why God works the way He does. As they learned the hard lessons, sometimes very painful ones, I cringed and sunk down lower in my chair feeling the weight of their hearts. As the beautiful gestures of family and love were displayed for the reader (me) I was drawn into the importance of the roles our families play in our lives, both the challenging and uplifting. Sometimes were the giver and sometimes were the receiver of such gestures.The well-crafted mystery the characters are intimately woven into keeps you guessing. I didnt have everything figured out by the end of the third chapter, and the little surprises along the way were entertaining and sometimes shocking. Amy is amazing at pulling you into experiencing the emotions and life dramas the characters are working through.I loved that Amy included a readers guide to encourage further exploration into the Truths (Capital T) God has for each of us. Gracie and Steven had the same struggles Ive had and I know youve had them as well. Things like feeling helpless and trying to prove were not powerless, and believing the lie that were not good enough. But the most common question and struggle one that is asked every day by many believers and unbelievers alike is WHY? Why does God allow bad things to happen even when people pray? While she readily admits sometimes we wont find or understand the answers to our why questions, Amy does an incredible job of weaving a tale of hope and forgiveness that will send you to your knees.
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Review 11 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:April 17, 2007
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Danielle
Ransomed Dreams is a truly captivating story. I simply have to say that I loved the book!! It was so refreshing to find myself only halfway through the book and wondering where the rest of the story would lead! And I absolutely enjoyed being so engrossed in the characters that I had to re-read several passages to fully appreciate their feelings and experiences.I commonly find myself bored at some point with characters or plot lines in novels, but I was on the edge of my seat during the entire read of Ransomed Dreams!
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Review 12 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:April 14, 2007
Amy Wallace takes you on a wild ride in her new book Ransomed Dreams. It held my attention from page one to the closing of the book!!!! The story centers around Gracie Lang, who experiences what a person might call their worst nightmear ... watching her family killed right in front of her. As Gracie tries to heal she moves to a different place and begins working as a teacher at a special school. It's at this special school she meets the father of one of her students. FBI agent Steven Kessler works in the Crimes Against Children Unit and struggles with many heart issues, such as, how could God let terrible things happen to children as well as resentment toward an ex-wife who walked out on him and their infant son several years earlier and guilt for the times he didn't solve a case in time which resulted in a victim rather than a victory. As Gracie continues to seek justice for her family's death and Steven tries to solve a major case, their paths come dangereously close. This story is their journey through some very painful issues. Steven and Gracie felt very real. They were not saints but very much struggled with things you and I struggle with. Their feelings and emotions were completely realistic. The secondary characters were ones you want to know better. Clint and Sara were a great couple. Clint makes a great partner and best friend for Steven. I highly recommend this page turning novel. It will be a tough wait for book two (Clint and Sara's Story)... due out April 2008. Get the book...you won't be sorry. Thanks Amy! Great work!
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Review 13 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:April 2, 2007
This book is the debut release by new author Amy Wallace. In it, Amy mixes romance and suspense liberally with the trick of letting you know who the bad guys are almost from the beginning. Hence, it's not a thriller, but rather the race to see who is going to win.Gracie and Steven first intersect over Steven's son James, who reminds Gracie a lot of the son she lost. As a teacher at a private school in a DC suburb that caters to the wealthy and influential, she's used to secret service agents being around. However, she's not prepared for the calls that take Steven away or cancel their first few dates. Or the threats to her students.The spiritual threads are strongly woven into the book. And somehow Amy finds the right balance the prevents that thread from becoming too preachy or those passages becoming the ones I skip.The books timeline is leisurely, allowing for more development in the characters, and the authors writing style was straightforward. I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more of the author's books.
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Review 14 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:March 26, 2007
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Elizabeth Medlin
I know a book is good when I am not able to put it down and Ransom Dreams was just that. A very moving book...It touched on all my fears, but showed so well God's love and forgiveness.
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Review 15 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:March 22, 2007
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Susan Sleeman
Grab a box of tissues before you sit down to read the debut romantic suspense novel, Ransomed Dreams by Amy Wallace. By page sixteen I had a tissue in one hand and the book in the other, my eyes riveted to the pages. In the opening chapters Wallace touches that tender place that parents hope never to tread. As Gracie Lang watches, her husband and two darling little children are killed in an automobile accident. We then pick up the story two years later where Gracie has healed as much as a parent could from that kind of loss. She is ready to move forward, which includes following a romantic interest in FBI agent Steven Kessler who heads up the Crimes Against Children Unit. But before Gracie can heal as God would have us all do in our pain, she has to fully let go of the past. She thinks finding the hit and run driver who killed her family will do that for her. She hires a private investigator to dig into the accident and bring the killer to justice. Only then does Gracie think shell find closure. The PIs sleuthing resurfaces all of Gracies dormant emotions and propels her into a run for her own life. Still, she must move toward, forgiving the driver if she hopes to be whole again. Agent Kessler fights a similar struggle with forgiveness. His demons, an ex-wife who has a devilish agenda of her own and his failure to save the lives of abducted children, keep Stephen from pursuing the relationship he desires with Gracie. Ransomed Dreams shows us his and Gracies clear struggle to love again through forgiving those who have hurt them, a process only possible through Gods forgiveness. This romantic suspense moves along well. Wallace provides a good balance between action, romance, and personal growth. From page one, Gracie gains our love and sympathy from the loss of her children, but as we read on, she gains our respect for courage in the face of a seemingly insurmountable loss. We can apply her struggle to our everyday fight to let God take over our lives.
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Review 16 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:February 23, 2007
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Harriet Klausner
In the Atlanta area, Mark and Gracie Ann Lang and their two preadolescent children Elizabeth and Joshua are going to spend New Years at her parents home. However, Gracie Ann forgot to turn on her oven so sends her three loved ones ahead. After they leave, Gracie Ann realizes she can bake the cake in her moms oven; she leaves also. On the highway she is behind her family when an out of control pick-up truck rams into their minivan. The truck driver keeps going while Gracie Ann sees three sheets.Two years later in DC, FBI Crimes Against Children Coordinator Steven Kessler is assigned the abductions of seventeen years old Olivia Kensington daughter of the British ambassador Sir Walter, and her best friend Jordan. Sir Walter hides information from Steven making the case increasingly likely to result in murder. Steven meets still grieving Gracie Ann when he goes to pick up his son James at the Hope Ridge Academy where she teaches (having left Georgia). He arranges with a private sleuth friend to investigate her obsession to bring to justice her familys killer even while someone watches every move she makes to insure she cannot get to close to the killer driver.Though the DC link between Gracie Ann and the vehicular homicide watcher seems too great a coincidence and her meeting the Fed at the school seems doubtful but not as stretched, RANSOMED DREAMS is an exciting romantic suspense thriller due to the caring personalities of the lead couple. Whereas Steven personalizes when he or his team fail to save the life of a child from a human predator, Gracie Ann obsesses over an eye for an eye justice for her late family. Fans will root for this couple who need one another to move past recent traumas (hers is obvious; his is a kid saved too late). Amy Wallace writes a strong character study as grief is personal surfacing differently in people.Harriet Klausner
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Review 17 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:February 8, 2007
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Meg Moseley
Amy Wallaces first novel confronts tragedy head-on and balances it with the healing power of forgiveness. This fast-paced story follows schoolteacher Gracie Langs quest for the drunk driver who killed her children and her husband. Driven to find the truth that eluded the police for years, at first she doesnt have the time or the desire to strike up a friendship with Steven Kessler, the father of one of her students. A single father, Steven has one of the toughest jobs on earth; he is on the FBIs Crimes Against Children force. By hardening himself against the realities of his work and against the pain of a marriage that failed, he also hardened his heart against God. Stevens supervisor and friend, Clint Rollins, needles him into facing the cure for a hard heart: forgiveness, which is also the answer for Gracies inner battle. Steven and Gracies romance blossoms against a backdrop of crime and danger, including a kidnapping with international ramifications. I enjoyed their relationship as well as the realistic portrayal of affection between Clint and his wife, who will star in one of the sequels.
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Review 18 for Ransomed Dreams, Defenders of Hope Series #1
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:February 5, 2007
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Narelle Mollet
Welcome to the new kid on the block in romantic suspense ~ Amy Wallace! Gracie Lang's life is shattered by the hit and run death of her family and is consumed by her desire to find the man responsible. Teaching first grade at the exclusive Hope Ridge Academy and her golden retriever, Jake are the only things anchoring her in this life.FBI Agent Steven Kessler has been flying solo as a parent since his wife's betrayal and desertion nearly five years earlier. Becoming the Crimes Against Children Coordinator has kept the guilt of his failed marriage and his rejection of God at bay - just. When the British Ambassador's daughter is kidnapped and Steven and his team, Clint Rollins and FBI newbie, Michael Parker are assigned to the high priority case, the pressure mounts. The ambassador is bent on hiding his past, the kidnapper is elusive and time is running out for the victim. In this tense environment Gracie and Steven meet, their attraction signaling a fresh start for them both but soon the demanding nature of Steven's job and Gracie's unforgiving heart toward her family's killer trample any hope of a future together.Amy Wallace takes the reader on a roller coaster ride through the emotions from the heart-wrenching grief of a young widow to the torment experienced by an FBI Agent when an investigation fails to the hope birthed through forgiveness. Gracie and Steven are fascinating and authentic and the author does not shy away from the hard realities of life which gives her characters a depth and purpose the reader can relate to. Her minor characters and the "bad guys" are also well-developed. The suspense is tight and the romance captivating reminding me of Dee Henderson's O'Malley series. While there is some disjointedness to the writing from time to time, I have no doubt Amy Wallace is an author to watch and I eagerly anticipate the sequels, Healing Promises and Shattered Defense which tell the stories of Clint and Michael respectively.
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