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(based upon 11 reviews)

Such an important topic, packaged in a great read
By , Submitted on 2019-09-03

I read Shannon's book and then decided after all I learned that I needed to sit down and have a chat with her. A luxury I have since I am a fellow author. Her book has such important topics in it about how abuse and domestic violence actually works, vrs. how we think it works if it's never happened to us. Her story is cute and engaging when it's not serious and a teaching moment. She told me when we talked that she wrote this book so that all of her LDS friends could understand how abuse really works and to bring awareness to the topic so that we can all have a LOT more empathy and understanding of our brothers and sisters going through abuse.
You can listen to our interview at the link below.

Safe House
By , Submitted on 2019-08-24

I wasn't really sure what Safe House was going to be about, other than abuse, and I was cautious, worried that it might be a heavy read. The book grabbed me right from the start. I didn't want to put it down. As I followed the stories of Emily,Kelly, and Grace, I found myself navigating a myriad of emotions, from fear to frustration, and hope to happiness. One thing I really loved about this book was the Latter-day Saint theme spread throughout. It wasn't the only focus of the book, but it was an important component, woven throughout with characters and their CTR rings. It makes me want to go find mine and put it on again! I felt like this book was realistic, gripping, and did a really good job of educating me about domestic abuse while still entertaining me. Great read!

Everyone should read this book.
By , Submitted on 2019-02-18

This book is wonderful, not only does it have an interesting story line, but it addresses the important topic of abuse, especially within the home and with family members. If you read carefully, between the lines, you realize that the author is not only telling a story, but she is teaching those who who read it not only the warning signs of an abusive person, but she lets you know how to find help. There are so many resources out there that I never knew about. She also helps people understand why the abused person often stays or goes back to the abuser. It is not all black and white and simple. Most of all this book fills the reader with hope! I am so grateful for the light the author, Shannon Symonds (who is also a Sexual Assault Advocate in real life) shines on domestic abuse. It is such a hard topic, but I believe this book helps bring things to light and teach the reader. This is a book I would recommend to all mature teens and adults. It is worth the read!

Super intense book that draws you in from the first page
By , Submitted on 2017-10-26

Wow, I'm not quite sure what I expected from this book, but I didn't expect to be drawn in as fast as I was. This book is intense from the very first page until the very last page. I loved every minute I spent reading it!

I like the way this book has so many different view points. You get such a great picture of exactly what is happening. You even get viewpoints from the bad guys in this one. That really made the picture of everything going on so clear.

I'm not sure I can tell you just who the main character is, there are several. I'd have to say Amber, Grace and Kelly would kind of be the three main ones. There characters are so well-written, I almost felt as though I knew them and there were certain times during the story that I was terrified for what was going to happen to them. I thought the author did a great job portraying the way things are for victims of domestic abuse. It really made me grateful that I personally haven't had to deal with that in my own life, although I do know people who have and it helped me appreciate a little more what they have gone through.

I loved the plot of this one, it really drew me in and it didn't let go until the very last word! I love that this one is intense, but at the same time completely clean, such a great book!

Make sure you get this great book, it would be great if you did it this month, the author of this book is donating her profits this month to survivors of domestic abuse. What a great cause!

Good subject matter
By , Submitted on 2017-09-01

The writing was good, the subject matter and characters were believable, but some aspects of the story were a little unrealistic. My concern is that the author portrays active members of the "Mormon" faith as being free of the problems she writes about. Ultimately, I agree with the reviewer who recognized the importance of the topic and I'm glad that the author chose to address this difficult issue.

Opened my eyes
By , Submitted on 2017-09-01

This book was a mystery/thriller suitable for teens and adults. The author has worked as an advocate for victims of abuse and/or assault. She has taken her first-hand knowledge of what she had learned in real life to write fiction that is believable and reflects some the actual difficulties with which people can find themselves dealing.

At first I experienced anger directed not only at the abusers, but in the ineffectual response on the part of the victims. The author gently leads a reader to understand how people can find themselves being gradually led into situations that open them up to abuse without realizing the position they are in until it is too late. Her goal, besides telling an excellent and exciting story, is to guide the readers to see how victims who blame themselves for the abuse they receive can work to become survivors who put the blame where it belongs, but sometimes they must accept help from others to do so. The story highlighted not only the issues of spousal abuse, but how much abuse of a spouse can have a negative impact on the children in the family and leave them living in constant fear and uncertainty.

In addition to the social issues and the tensions they provided the characters, this was an exciting adventure as the characters in the town find themselves dealing with a force of nature that threatens to overpower them all, including the modern technology we take so much for granted in this day and age. The action kept me reading.

This is a novel with many L.D.S. (Mormon to much of the world) characters. I believe the novel can be enjoyed by readers who are not L.D.S. since the author depicts people of faith, and some of L.D.S. practices, without getting much into doctrine.

The focus of the book was not romance, but the romance elements present were sweet and clean. Not all romances were resolved, which leads me to hope the author may have a sequel to this novel. It was an enjoyable and enlightening read, and I recommend it.

I received an advance reader’s copy of this book and voluntarily chose to review it

By , Submitted on 2017-08-30

I have to admit that reading books about abuse of any kind is very hard for me. I like to read books to escape reality and not read about it. Having said that, this book ended up being such a great book to read.

I loved this story. I am saying this will all love behind it. My sisters and I love these kinds of books. We call them "Mormon Smut Books"....hehe. I really do mean that as the best compliment. I love to read books that have to do with my religion and love. Or any religion for that matter. I know that when I read it, it will be clean.

I loved that this book covered a hard topic, and showed how people could get out and move on to bigger and better things. I am a HUGE advocate for Sexual Abuse, and the author of this book is a HUGE advocate for Domestic Violence. I think that's why I liked the book so much. Hard topics are hard to read, so they have to be done well. The author definitely did well with this book.

We all take the chance when we marry someone, that they are not all they say they are. We may not know what their demons are until after marriage. Then sometimes they have groomed you so well, that it's impossible to leave. Amber and Kelly realize this after they have gotten married and are both faced with the challenge of what to do now.

As they navigate their lives with the help of Grace, they realize that there is a possibility of life outside of an abusive marriage. They find their faith in God again, and the power to fight for what is missing in their lives.

This is such a good book about love, life, faith, religion and suspense. Their stories are heartbreaking, and life changing all at the same time. I hope that you take the time to read this book. It is so wonderful.

I Know More Than I Did Before
By , Submitted on 2017-08-26

I first have to say that I think the information and overall message of this book is so important. I haven't had a lot of experience with domestic violence and knowing there are so many women and children (and men) in the world suffering through this is heartbreaking. The author of this book works as a victim's advocate so her personal, first hand knowledge and experience go a long way in making this novel valid and real. And honestly? Thank goodness for Shannon and people like her to help, support and love to people when they need it the most.

As for the book itself, I had a hard time settling into it. The scenes jump around a lot and it made it hard for me to connect on an emotional level to the characters. Just when I would start getting a feel for a person and their situation, their personality, I would be shifted to a different person in a different place. It just made it hard to keep people straight in the beginning and connect to them. By the end I had all the characters down but the emotional connection to them was still missing.

I did feel the build of intensity in the story though. Things escalate steadily to provide an end to this book that is dramatic and intense. I loved the feeling of community and faith among the characters. This book gave me insight to the lives of those who suffer from domestic abuse and I'm always grateful when I read a book and walk away feeling like I know more than I did before.

Content: Some violence, domestic abuse. Mentions of pornography, infidelity and a hint of an attempted rape. Characters are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints so there is talk about religion, God and praying.

- I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Cedar Fort. All opinions expressed are my own.

By , Submitted on 2017-08-09

Loved this book! The characters were so flawed and love-able. I loved to see missionary work in action as well. Such an important topic and so tastefully written about. Couldn't wait to find out what happens to everyone that I grew to love and hope there's a sequel!

Safe House by Shannon Symonds
By , Submitted on 2017-07-13

I started this book and had a hard time putting it down. Even though the subject of domestic abuse is hard to read about, the author gave you insight into the victims thinking. The story showed what the advocates for the victims life's are like, what the children are thinking, the ways abusers not only physically but emotionally abuse their victims, and how the victims feel they are to blame for the abuse. Even though this was a heavy subject to cover in a novel, the author was able to use the humor of other characters to lighten the story at times. My favorite Characters were Mabel and Alan, the are the unsung heros of the story. Worth the time to read and enjoy the adventure of living in a small coastal town, and how the smallest act of kindness can change someone's life.

Great read!
By , Submitted on 2017-06-21

This book was wonderful. It's suspenseful and exciting. It has great characters and the plot really pulls you in. Just wait until the last half when everything starts to fall apart it seems and then suddenly..... The characters are really relatable and real. Great info on the authors website about domestic violence too. I'd definetly recommend it!

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