Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Messenger” as Want to Read:
The Messenger
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Messenger

(Against All Expectations #5)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  2,172 ratings  ·  216 reviews
A Riveting Tale of Faith and Romance by an Acclaimed Novelist

Hannah Sunderland felt content in her embrace of the Quaker faith..until her twin brother ran off and joined the army and ended up captured and in jail. Suddenly Hannah's world turns on end. She longs to bring her brother some measure of comfort in the squalid, frigid prison where he remains. But the Quakers beli
Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 1st 2012 by Bethany House
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Messenger, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Messenger

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,172 ratings  ·  216 reviews

More filters
Sort order
In the back of this book, Ms. Mitchell writes a note of how grateful she was to her publishers for accepting a manuscript idea for a Revolutionary War novel. Apparently they're not all that popular. in the same vein, I too am grateful to Bethany House for taking a step of faith with this particular book. I tire of Victorian literature and Regency literature and everything in between. What interests me most at present is early American literature and Ms. Mitchell has written a winner.

I have no ex
Cathy Daniel
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! The history of it. The fact it was true historical fiction and not historical romance. This author is a great new find to me. I'm just disappointed the ending was so abrupt. I would have liked more closure :( I loved the note from the author at the end! So interesting
Jun 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Revolutionary War. Spies. Quakers. A rogue pub owner. And Siri Mitchell. Put those combinations together and you really can’t get much better than that.

One of the things I value in a novel by Siri Mitchell is her extreme attention to detail. Her novels are a wonder and treasure trove, not only of the history of the era, but how much it becomes an intricate player in the book. Twining through a novel filled with 18th century espionage, is a glimpse into a world too often darkened to today’s read
Jocelyn Green
I was so impressed with this book! Loved the characters, the dialogue (right down to some of the 18th-century vocabulary), the historical events it portrayed, and the growth in both the hero and the heroine from start to finish. To me, the ending was completely satisfying. Well done, Siri Mitchell!
Feb 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
With the city of Philadelphia under British occupation, Hannah Sunderland and her family, devout Quakers, struggle to survive in the midst of a conflict that has seen them disavowed and misused by both sides because of their pacifist beliefs. When a British officer commandeers the family home and news arrives that her twin brother, disowned by his Meeting and family for joining the Colonial army, has been imprisoned, Hannah finds the religious and familial dictates to stay uninvolved in the conf ...more
Are you tired of the books that go like this?
Pretty and sweet girl meets handsome rough who is not at Christian. Guy gets sweet girl to realize her fanatical beliefs are silly. Girl still loves God, but tosses most of her beliefs. Handsome Rouge comes to Christ making everything okay.

Yup, I get tired of that story too. How come we swoon over it in the books and movies and then are horrified when our daughters, sisters, and friends do it. Well, this is a happy exception to the rule while still ke
Regina Jennings
Feb 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. Siri's writing style is rich and her characters have depth. The conflict between Hannah and Jeremiah's beliefs wasn't easily sorted. Instead, the reader was allowed to wrestle with weighty questions concerning God's will, honoring parents, pacifism, and honesty.

Truly, I didn't know how this book would end, especially after reading Love's Pursuit - my favorite Siri Mitchell book. Okay, maybe I have two favorites now.

It was an all-night, but-totally-worth-it read for me.
Dec 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. I wish I had written my review sooner so I could remember more about the book. But I loved Hannah's struggle and how amazingly real it felt. She had real convictions of her own, and she stood on them. I also loved the romance in the book. It was so incredibly light and there were really no mushy scenes. The author really did an amazing job of describing where characters were so I really felt like I could see what they were seeing.
It was awesome.
SUMMARY: Hannah Sunderland felt content in her embrace of the Quaker faith...until her twin brother ran off and joined the army and ended up captured and in jail. Suddenly Hannah's world turns on end. She longs to bring her brother some measure of comfort in the squalid, frigid prison where he remains. But the Quakers believe they are not to take sides, not to take up arms. Can she sit by and do nothing while he suffers?

Jeremiah Jones has an enormous task before him. Responsibility for a spy rin
Holly Weiss

1778. Philadelphia is under British occupation.
A Quaker woman weeps for her brother suffering in a British jail.
A Colonial spy courts British officers in his tavern.

In The Messenger, a woman and a man from two walks of life team up to aid American military prisoners in a British jail.

Quaker, Hannah Sunderland, feels the numbing cold, hunger and filth her twin, Robert, suffers in the Walnut Street prison. Will Hannah go against the Quaker Meeting’s warning to have nothing to do with “this ungodl
Jun 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
Rating 1.5
The only reason this is getting a two-star rating is because I finished listening to the entire book. It was work.

First, let me say that there is a word in the English language that the author needs to know: THOU. THOU! THOU! THOU! Plus, verbs are conjugated with that such as shalt and wouldst, etc. Lack of the use of "thou" and of properly conjugated verbs to the missing "thou" drove me crazy through the whole book. Maybe someone somewhere does say things like, "Thee are . . . ." But
Amber Stokes
Jan 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Thought-provoking. Intriguing. Riveting. Siri Mitchell has done it again!

Mitchell does first-person POV brilliantly (as also exemplified in Chateau of Echoes and She Walks in Beauty). But The Messenger has a unique twist - first-person POV for both the hero and the heroine. And it works beautifully!

The American Revolution shakes Hannah Sunderland to the core. A British officer takes over her childhood home. Her new life with extended family - rich, Loyalist slave-owners - challenges her simple w
Feb 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
First posted on my blog, Legacy of a Writer.

I am rather new to Siri Mitchell's historicals, but after reading this new release I declare myself a very avid fan! The Messenger mixes the perfect blend of intrigue and history--complete with a lovely writing voice that brought the characters to life. I don't know what they is not to like in this book!

The complexity of the two main characters--Jeremiah and Hannah--amazed me. Mitchell did an outstanding job as I watched them grow, change, and struggle
Anne Osterlund
May 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Hannah has no intention of joining sides in the revolutionary conflict tearing apart Philadelphia. She knows her Quaker beliefs are despised equally by both the American rebels, who have stolen her brother’s loyalty, and the British soldiers, who have invaded her home.

But when word comes that her brother has been imprisoned, Hannah goes to the jail. And finds him suffering inhumane conditions. Conditions no one else seems to hold any interest in. Not her parents. Or the participants in Meeting.
Rachel Brand

PROS: Isn’t scared to give gritty details about this period of history; heavily researched; gentle and not overbearing romance and spiritual details; realistic protagonists

CONS: Ending is rather abrupt and left me wanting more

Quaker Hannah Sunderland has strictly followed her faith’s decision to avoid taking sides or arms in the Revolutionary War, even when it means that her family ar
Mar 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars
The Messenger is the first book I've read by Siri Mitchell, but it, Lord willing (and the snow don't stop... LOL), won't be the last.
This was a beautiful book. One of the only Christian fiction stories I've read set during the Revolutionary War. It was excellent. I enjoyed the romance, the action, and, while their wasn't a salvation message, the faith as well.
The history buff in me loved the rich yet not excessive details of the place and time. The romantic in my loved the chaste, sweet
Sydney Elaine
Oct 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Review on my blog:

Historical fiction set in the Revolutionary War era is about as rare as a Unicorn, where everyone hopes it exists and then ends up not being anything like what you expected or wanted it to be. Mitchell even thanked her publishers for allowing her to publish the book because despite how much people enjoy the books, they often don't sell as well as others.

So when someone actually finds a decent Revolutionary War it's shouted from the rooft
Margaret Metz
Mar 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
When you pick up a book by Siri Mitchell, you know it isn't going to be just like anything else you've already read. She has a passion for research and building complex characters who don't always do what you or I might expect of them. They always seem real enough to take their pulse though.

She has to be the only one who would cast a committed Quaker as a spy. I was as terrified for Hannah as Jeremiah (and as frustrated too). I wondered if this was how the spies of the Bible acted. Did they alw
What can I say about The Messenger? It was enthralling, captivating... heartbreaking. It was real. I suffered along with Quaker Hannah and wounded and scarred Jeremiah, and all the Patriot prisoners. I shared the paralyzing fear of a spy about to be caught; the anguish of one searching for God; the doomed, cold feeling of hopelessness; and the breathtaking feeling of relief, and HOPE.

I was caught in by all three of the other books I read by Siri Mitchell (She Walks in Beauty, A Constant Heart, a
Nov 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Olivia by: my sister
{4.5 stars}

I think I found a new favorite author :) This kept me fascinated the whole time. I really like the main characters, Hannah Sutherland and Jeremiah Jones. Hannah's struggle was real and I could relate very much. Was it wrong to go against her faith to help spy against the British? One thing I really appreciated about her character is she never wanted to lie, even to save herself.

Jeremiah Jones. A character you love and hate; a man with morals, without faith. He owns a tavern and is far
Nancy Kimball
Aug 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
I can't believe that I would love a romance so much where the hero and heroine never kiss. It took a few chapters for me to adjust to alternating first person and the Quaker dialect of the heroine, but once I did, the story began unfolding. It does unfold slow, but thankfully I'd read another Siri Mitchell novel prior to this one so I knew this author was very good and there must be a reason for that.
I read a lot of historical fiction. The historical detail is heavy but not overpowering which is
Deborah Heal
Dec 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The Messenger by Siri Mitchell

Thanks, Ms. Mitchell, for all the meticulous historical research you did to make The Messenger shine. Reading a story set in Revolutionary War time was a refreshing change, and I appreciated the chance to learn more about the occupation of Philadelphia. No history teacher ever explained so well why the colonists went to war over such practices as the British quartering soldiers in their homes. The author highlighted out the political complexities of that volatile ti
Mar 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Wow! Almost speechless...but not quite. First, I'm amazed at what a literary chameleon Mitchell is. She seems to take on a new voice with every novel that I read. This one resonates with old world charm -- from Hannah's quaint Quaker speech to Jeremiah's cynical view of the world. Throwing them together in one novel in the midst of one of America's most turbulent times was sheer brilliance. Amazing character development, fascinating (and dismaying) historical facts, an impossible romance and int ...more
Feb 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
Rating 4.5

A masterful Revolutionary War tale, well written with stellar main characters.

Hannah Sunderland's world is changing fast, and not for the better. Her family's house is taken over by a British officer, her brother is imprisoned. Hannah is determined to do anything to help her brother, but what if it means becoming a spy?

I was amazed at how much I liked this novel. The depth made it riveting and I really appreciated the historical details. The characters were well written and I enjoyed t
Mar 25, 2012 rated it really liked it

The Messenger is the second book I have read from Siri Mitchell and I am now a certified fan! She is an eloquent writer and she has the gift to bring life to words.

This story is a heart felt story of faith, devotion, and love. Hannah is the daughter of a devote Quaker family. When her brother joins the patriot cause during the Revolutionary war, he is thrown in prison. Because of their beliefs, the family refuses to visit him. Hannah is disturbed by this, and tries to find a way to see him. Jere
Rachelle Cobb
May 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing

What I Loved

I remember reading the back cover copy of this novel many times long before I picked it up. Once I finished reading it, I sat back in awe of the author's talent and grace in delivering such a compelling story. I raided my library for every Siri Mitchell book on the shelves and had myself a Siri Mitchell weekend! She is definitely one of my favorite authors now.

This story starts with a bang and doesn't let up until the very last page. I can hardly find the words to describe how the de
Jul 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review-books
Review on Amazon:
Review on my blog (to be posted 1/6):

The Messenger is the first of Siri Mitchell's books I've read, but I definitely plan on reading more! Having not known much about the Quaker faith, it was interesting to read a book where one of the main characters was a Friend... definitely learned some things about their faith.

The story was fascinating and I found it hard to put down towards the end. I loved t
Rebecca (whenallotherlightsgoout)
I read this book a while ago, but I wanted to review it. I was unsure about it when I went into it. I like historicals, but I am not a fan of romance. I don’t care for books that are basically romance novels in a historical setting. I had run into too many of them, so I was wary when I picked this one up.

I really needn’t have been. This book was great! Of course there was romance in it, but it was a side plot. And this couple had the ability not to think of each other every waking minute. They h
Nov 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
I enjoy reading about the revolution time period and especially enjoyed this book since I had studied the Quaker religion for a history class. Hannah is interesting to follow as she discovers her own convictions and reconciles them with her chosen religion. Jeremiah is someone who wins you over as I am sure the author intended as he goes from a callous sort of man to a gentler one. Hannah brings out the good in him and he does the same for her. While I was surprised by what I felt was an abrupt ...more
Amanda Casper
May 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
A spy novel! Yes!! Just what I needed in my life... haha. This book was great. I really loved learning more about the ins and outs of the Revolutionary War (at least when it came to spies). The main female character in this book is a Quaker which I found to be quit an interesting group of people. I just read "She Walks in Beauty" so I guess I expected something different. But a good kind of different. I definitely would not say this is a romance novel. I mean there are a few things here and the ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Nov 20, 2014 11:36AM  
¿Por qué no una traducción al Español? 1 1 Oct 22, 2014 12:57PM  
Translation to Spanish, why not? 1 2 Jul 07, 2014 05:45PM  
Plot poorly portrays Friends ie. Quakers 1 7 Feb 26, 2014 10:20AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Prize of My Heart (Sea Heroes of Duxbury)
  • Words Spoken True
  • The Rose of Winslow Street
  • Fairer Than Morning (Saddler's Legacy, #1)
  • An Unlikely Suitor
  • Before the Scarlet Dawn (Daughters of the Potomac, #1)
  • Surrender the Night (Surrender to Destiny, # 2)
  • Courting Morrow Little
  • Love in Disguise
  • Heart's Safe Passage (The Midwives, #2)
  • Burning Sky
  • Sixty Acres and a Bride (Ladies of Caldwell County, #1)
  • Unending Devotion (Michigan Brides, #1)
  • A Heart Divided (Heart of the Rockies, #1)
  • Wings of a Dream
See similar books…
also published under the name Siri L. Mitchell & Iris Anthony

Siri Mitchell graduated from the University of Washington with a business degree and worked in various levels of government. As a military spouse, she has lived all over the world, including Paris and Tokyo. Siri enjoys observing and learning from different cultures. She is fluent in French and loves sushi.

But she is also a member of

Other books in the series

Against All Expectations (7 books)
  • A Constant Heart
  • Love's Pursuit
  • She Walks in Beauty
  • A Heart Most Worthy
  • Unrivaled
  • Love Comes Calling
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »
“Why does it always have to be that way? Why do good men always have to sacrifice themselves for others?

Because they believe that the rest of us are worth it.”
“The concept of the Trinity seems very esoteric and irrelevant in today's world, but it seems to me that only a faith embracing each person of the Trinity can save us from imbalance. While love without faith offers no hope, faith without love offers no mercy. We must have both faith and love or run the danger of discovering that, in the end, we have nothing at all.” 5 likes
More quotes…