Where the Journey Begins
SEEKERS OF THE PAST
The first, and flagship novel in the series, Seekers of the Past.
Journey to Where the Past Meets the Present and Love Lives Forever
Seeking the Past…
Emma Wells has uncovered clues which might prove an old family tale true. Strange things lead her to question whether her grandfather’s death might not have been an accident. She begins to search for something buried on her property worth killing him for. When she asks an old friend to assist, the man who comes in his place is the last person she ever wanted to see again.
Seeking a Second Chance…
Sam Martinelli has been hoping for a reason to get close to the woman he still loves since he destroyed their relationship five years ago. His foolish actions drove her away then, but now he’s hoping his expertise as well as time working with her allows him another chance.
When Emma’s suspicions prove to have substance, she convinces Sam to help her even as he carries doubts. Being with him again, she begins to question her heart and past as well as her foolish pride. When things take a dangerous turn, Emma realizes she must trust the man she trusts least as well as her heart, especially when the past collides with the present and the truth of it all is uncovered.
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What people are saying about SEEKERS OF THE PAST:\
To start off,I’m not a reader but this book has made me one!! I fell in love with this book! I loved everything about it!!! You will not want to put it down . i have just bought 2 more books for birthday presents!! can’t wait to see the next book!!! – Amazon reader
Seekers of the Past is a wonderful book. Imaginative and engaging, I thoroughly enjoyed it. The characters are well written and the author truly transports readers to the Virginia countryside. Cannot wait for the next book in the series. Well done Amy Valentini. – Amazon reader
Emma is back at the family farm, convinced her Grandfather’s death was not accidental and somehow tied to an old family story and some treasured journals and letters dating from the days of the Civil War. An archaeologist by trade, she’s called an old friend at UVA to help her unravel the mystery, someone who won’t think she’s overly imaginative. In the meantime, since the family farm came into her hands after probate, she’s done some work, hired four students from the Agriculture department to work the land, and is slowly, and determinedly working to find an old escape tunnel used by slaves heading to freedom.
Sam Martinelli is a professor at the university, and until her father’s death some five years earlier, her best friend and love. Another archaeologist, Sam’s classes are always full of co-eds, but he’s taken a few weeks to substitute in and help Emma in her quest, replacing her father’s former colleague and friend, laid low by health.
The carrying thread (and truly engaging) is the series of letters from Emma’s ancestor Jeremiah, a courier for the confederacy, later hanged as a spy by the union. Each letter mentions provisions made for the family’s security, and a journal from his wife Sarah seems to contradict a long-held belief (as retold in oral history) that just before his capture, Jeremiah was able to visit his wife for a single day. Adding to the confusion for Emma, a faintly threatening series of visits from a former professor, offering increasing amounts of money and exerting pressure to buy the farm, then simply contents, leaving Emma feeling on edge: particularly after her grandfather’s death and the obvious results of a house being tossed and searched. The threats, including a murder and a few more incidents of the house being searched run through to a surprising, and quite intriguing end. When you mix the mystery with the so thick it will choke you chemistry between Sam and Emma – you can’t help but turning the pages, desperate to see if Emma will ever take the chip off her shoulder and go for it. And yes, in some ways, with the only information she had at a very emotional low point in her life, she had reason to not trust Sam. But to hold all that anger and resentment, digging it up to keep herself feeling righteous in her anger aimed at him did wear on my nerves, and with a surprising and unexpected nudge from her best friend in a pass-through visit, she actually is able to think about the character of the man she loves (yes, present tense) and her own immature and perhaps selfish refusal to let him explain that night. Yeah, Emma deserved a “wake up” slap or three, but Sam’s thorough knowledge of her and how her mind works, his patience with her hot and cold reactions, and his determined protective nature, willingness to listen to her theories, and ultimately believing that there is ‘something’ to be discovered kept this reader glued to the pages, wanting to see what would happen next.
Valentini has written a smart, engaging romance with characters that are more than simple cutouts – showing their weaknesses and strengths, hearts and hurts and allowing it all to lead us in directions unexpected and exiting. A lovely debut story that has me anxious for the next as Emma and Sam head off in another journey through ancestry and history, hand in hand. – Amazon blog reviewer
Emma Wells, age 28, lives on Green Mount Farm built by Jason Embry centuries ago. Emma works as a researcher and restorer at Mount Vernon, home of George Washington. Currently, she is on a leave of absence from her job to care for the farm after the death of her beloved grandfather, Duncan Chambers. Two years after his death, Emma still cannot accept that he died by driving his Jeep into the pond. She remembers the stories he and his friends used to tell. The one story that grabbed her was the one Duncan told about his own great-grandfather, Jeremiah, a hero of the Confederacy. Now that Emma owns the farm, she is determined to find the truth behind the tale passed down by Grandfather Duncan.
Dr. Samuel (Sam) Martinelli is a professor of archeology at the University of Virginia. Five years ago, he and Emma were dating and in love. But one night, Sam got drunk and brought a girl to their place where Emma caught them in bed. Crushed, she fled. Sam and Emma have not seen one another since then. So, when he shows up on her porch, she is not happy to see him. He has come to let her know that her Uncle Walt has had a heart attack but is going to be fine. Emma agrees to let Sam stay in a guest room for the night. Emma tells him about her suspicions that someone wants something that may be hidden in the farmhouse because she found the place in a shambles when she moved in. She knows her grandfather would not have lived like that. Since then, she has been trying to go through all the paperwork in the house to see if she can find some clues. In addition, she has found a cave on the property and needs Sam’s help to investigate it.
Emma has some interns from the University doing some research on the farm and staying in one of the outbuildings. When a visiting girlfriend is found dead in the pool and it does not look to be an accidental drowning, things get really tense. Who would have killed this young girl and why? What is someone looking for on the farm that they would commit murder to find it?
What a delightful debut novel from author Amy Valentini. Her writing grabs the reader and pulls them right into the story. The descriptions of things are so well done that I could see things happening right in my mind’s eye. I absolutely loved this story. It combines history with a mystery and a romance. What a great combination. I cannot wait to read more by this new author. – Amazon reader and reviewer
I LOVED this book. It brought all the things I enjoy together, romance, mystery, and something new, genealogy. Wonderful!
As the unofficial genealogist in my family, I’m always looking for back stories, so I understand why Sam and Emma are looking to fill-in these gaps. Going backwards is something unique and ingenious and Amy Valentini has me on pins and needles waiting on book 2 in the series, “FOR THE SAKE OF HONOR”.
As someone who has done their fair share of research in her own past, what I wouldn’t give to have copies of old letters and journals.
This book is not to be missed. – Amazon reader
This was a great beginning to this series. I fell in love with Sam. The story grabs you from the beginning and doesn’t let go until you read “The End” but it just leaves you wanting more. I can’t wait for the next one. I never post spoilers but I do highly recommend this! Amy Valentini will be my go to author! – Amazon author and reader