About Me I am a retired librarian and I now support books and authors through my reviews.

I have always loved to read and I was able to share that love through my work as a public librarian for 22 1/2 years. I now enjoy reading to my granddaughter and supporting authors through my reviews!

Saturday, September 19, 2020

The Secret Place of Thunder by Alicia G. Ruggieri: Blog Tour & Giveaway


The mountains have imprisoned her long enough…

Edna Sue O’Connell came back to the Kentucky hills out of duty and can’t wait for the chance to escape again. Her work as a horseback librarian in rural Appalachia provides enough income for her invalid father to survive in the midst of the Great Depression, but it affords her with little else.

When an opportunity arises for Edna to take on an additional book delivery area, she spies a glimmer of hope that she might find a way out of Willow Hollow after all… and that she might actually make something of her life apart from the tragedy that has filled it thus far.

But the new routes give Edna more than she ever bargained for. Slowly, she finds that the mountains contain many valuable secrets – if she has the grit to meet them.

Purchase the Book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08BFBF93T — Available in e-book and softcover.

Find The Secret Place of Thunder on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54151965-the-secret-place-of-thunder


How do you help someone who considers herself to be an old maid chained to the mountains because of an "invalid father and a cantankerous step-mother"? How can you like this woman who is often blunt and resentful because she desperately wants to leave Willow Hollow and return to the city life that she once knew? Well, after reading this book, I do like Edna Sue O'Connell and I'm reminded once again how often we judge, or misjudge, people we don't really know. Author Alicia G. Ruggieri gives us a fascinating glance of this fictional packhorse librarian who rode her mule up into the Kentucky mountains to deliver books to people who often rejected her visits. Edna Sue may have longed to be someplace else but she continued to travel and it was through a peek at her thoughts during those hazardous rides that I came to understand her. She may have wanted to leave those hills but she also had a desire to help as she looked at "the haunted eyes of the children, the broken-down women, the men ruined by alcoholism, the crippled and abandoned elderly". It soon became apparent that Edna Sue wasn't happy because she didn't have hope and she didn't have the joy that comes from having a personal relationship with God. She felt that He was the cause of her problems and she continued to blame Him for her unhappy circumstances!

The Secret Place of Thunder shows Edna's journey to finding peace and the two very different men who, through their friendship and prayer, help her along this path. Ruggieri has written an inspiring story that shows Edna's feelings of unhappiness and hopelessness change to encouraged and hopeful. She made me truly like Edna Sue and I would love to see her story continue because there is so much more for her to experience, in both her Christian walk and her job. This book is a wonderful addition to the Librarians of Willow Hollow series and I recommend that you add it to your TBR list.

I voluntarily accepted a copy of this book from the publisher. There was no obligation for a positive review and these are my own thoughts.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Alicia G. Ruggieri grew up breathing in the salty air of coastal New England. She now writes grace-filled, Christ-centered fiction from her home in Wisconsin, where she lives with her husband and sweet second-hand mutt. She loves old graveyards, dusty libraries, and excellent cannolis ~ not necessarily in that order.

Learn more:

About the Series:

The Secret Place of Thunder is part of the Librarians of Willow Hollow multi-author novella collection. Each novella stands on its own but is connected to the others in this historical Christian fiction series set in 1930s Appalachia.

Other books in the Librarians of Willow Hollow series:
A Strand of Hope by Amanda Tero
I Love to Tell the Story by Faith Blum
Hearts on Lonely Mountain by A.M. Heath

Come along as four packhorse librarians find adventures outside the books they carry!


To celebrate this release, Alicia is giving away an Appalachian music CD, a mini handcrafted Appalachian Breakfast soy candle, and a set of whimsical bronze bookmarks! (Due to shipping costs, the giveaway is limited to the continental U.S.) 

Every day, as you stop on the blog tour, you have another opportunity to leave a comment on that specific blog and then claim your entry into a lovely giveaway. You may also enter the giveaway HERE.

Blog Tour Stops:

9/15       Welcome to the Tour at A Brighter Destiny – https://www.aliciagruggieri.com/abrighterdestiny

                Amanda @ https://amandatero.com/blog

                Raechel @ https://godspeculiartreasurerae.wordpress.com

9/16       Kaitlyn @ www.maidensformodesty.com

                J.E. Grace @ http://bizwingsblog.blogspot.com

9/17       Rebekah @ www.readytobeoffered.com

9/18       Jane @ www.janemouttet.wordpress.com

9/19       Connie @ https://connie-oldersmarter.blogspot.com

9/20       Abigail @ http://readreviewrejoice.com

                Tarissa @ http://inthebookcase.blogspot.com

9/21       Tara @ www.towerintheplains.wordpress.com

                Ryana @ www.lifeofheritage.com

9/22       Wrap-up & giveaway winner announced @ https://www.aliciagruggieri.com/abrighterdestiny


  1. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts, Connie!

  2. I'm excited about reading this story! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Thank You for Sharing Her Books with us It sounds Really Good