Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Hidden Falls: Season 1, Episodes 1-5 by Olivia Newport (Review)

Hidden Falls
by Olivia Newport
Christian Fiction / Contemporary / Mystery / Romance
Available weekly beginning January 24, 2014 
 Barbour Publishing
80 pages per episode

About the Book
An Exciting New 13-Part Serial Novel from Shiloh Run Studios

Thirty years of small-town secrets—now the key to the mystery is gone. The small town of Hidden Falls is abuzz. Former students, friends, and loved ones are prepping for tonight's big event to honor Ted Quinn's many years of compassionate service. Quinn is reluctant about a night in the spotlight—but is tenderly prodded by Sylvia, mayor of Hidden Falls and Quinn's dearest friend and confidante.

Ethan and Nicole won't let the shadows of their pasts stop them from returning to Hidden Falls—but only for Quinn—no matter how much it hurts. Liam, a former student, and Jack, a town newcomer, are both hoping the night works toward their own gain—or, if they'll admit it, their chance for redemption. Like Quinn, Dani and Lauren are mainstays in Hidden Falls. They keep close to home—and have secrets to keep close, too.

Now it's time. The guests are seated, introductions are made, the spotlight shines on center stage ... and the unthinkable leaves the entire town scrambling for the truth.

A new must-read episode releases every week starting January 24!

Buy a copy  |  Download the first episode for FREE  |  Find out what others think

Episode 1: Ordinary Secrets
The first episode introduces a ton of characters and jumps quickly between different scenes and character pairings. Thankfully, while I wanted more of the story (and right away, please!), I knew that more was coming. I just had to be patient and wait for the next episode. :) This is a great start, and I'm interested to see how the serial format works. [3 stars]

Episode 2: Losing Quinn
After a month's wait for the second episode, I was able to easily remember the characters and pick up where I left off in the first episode. The action picked up a bit, and I was so wanting just a little bit more. But alas, I must wait for the next episode! I fear this format is going to try my patience, but I'm really loving the story so far! [4 stars]

Episode 3: A Town in Trouble
The format reminds me a bit of a soap opera, in that each "scene" involves only two or three characters and the author jumps between scenes several times per episode. (Of course, this would be a very clean soap opera!) I'm still enjoying the story, and the pace has picked up a bit. I'm really liking Lauren, Nicole, and Ethan and would love to see more about them. [4 stars]

Episode 4: Unexpected Hero
I didn't feel like much happened in this episode. I suppose this would be a "slower" part of a book if it were all bound together. Jack's not my favorite character and he played a large role in this episode, so that may have had something to do with it as well. [3.5 stars]

Episode 5: The Mayor's Quandary
I've about decided that I'm not the best serial-novel reader. I'm too impatient to see what happens, and all of these cliffhanger endings are driving me crazy! I read the last three episodes in one week, and I enjoyed it a bit more. Perhaps I should have waited until they were all published before beginning to read?? Too late now, though. Despite the fact that this episode didn't have a ton of "action" in it, I did enjoy reading more about Ethan and Nicole. I'm definitely curious about where Quinn is, and I'm pretty much committed to reading the rest of the series now. Which I suppose is the whole point anyway, right?! [3.5 stars]

Overall Thoughts So Far
I'm definitely intrigued by this series. While there are a lot of characters to keep up with and the episodes jump quickly between "scenes," I'm interested to find out what happened to Quinn and am hoping for a few romances to develop too! I'm not sure the serial format is my favorite, but it hasn't deterred me from continuing to read! 

At this point, I'm still a little wary of the high price tag. The publisher recently lowered the price to $1.99 per episode (with the first one still a free download), but that's still $24 for the complete book when all is said and done. A little pricey for me, but some may not object.

Kudos to Olivia Newport for a great new story. I look forward to reading the rest of it!

I received a free copy of this book from Barbour Publishing through Net Galley in exchange for my fair and honest review.

About the Author
Olivia Newport’s novels twist through time to find where faith and passions meet. Her husband and two twentysomething children provide welcome distraction from the people stomping through her head on their way into her books. She chases joy in stunning Colorado at the foot of the Rockies, where daylilies grow as tall as she is.

Olivia Newport Online


  1. I read the first two episodes b/c they were free. They were interesting and I like Ethan and Nicole's storyline the best. But I think the price tag seems kind of high for less than 70 pages of reading. I'd rather wait until the whole series is put into a complete book.

    1. Yeah, I think the price is a bit high too. I think people who prefer the entire book at once and/or are looking for a lower price will be happy to read the story when it's all been published. :)

      And I agree. Ethan and Nicole are my favorite!

  2. I have been reading this series thanks to netgalley. I am not sure I would be willing to pay the high price tag to read it as it has been okay but it's not epic.

    I was also wondering if you might be interested in reviewing Gatehaven by Molly Noble Bull. It comes out in March and I am helping her put together a blog tour. I still need someone for April 4th if your interested please contact me at stormi@lightningbookpromotions.com. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18341706-gatehaven

    1. Totally agree on the price. I guess this serial book thing is still a little new (well, new this time around!), so it will be interesting to see how people respond and publishers adjust.

      I just sent you an email about Gatehaven. Thanks for thinking of me!


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