內容簡介 GRACE begins researching her family history. The old family story says her great-great grandfather, MATHIAS BERMEL, came from Germany as a stowaway at the age of fourteen.In a trunk, Grace discovers eight journals written by Mathias. While recording his stories, she realizes her family history carries not only a name, but also a darkness that has impacted generations. She assumes the secret had its historical origins in a castle in Germany.Mathias is, indeed, a runaway. He runs to escape military service in war-torn Germany and to escape a situation where he is powerless to protect his younger sister, ANNA MARIE, from the sexual advances of an older cousin, OTTO.He is taken in by FATHER BARNABUS in Koln. There he grows in his relationship with God under the mentorship of the old priest. At the threat of discovery by Otto, Mathias is shipped off to Rotterdam where he hides away on a ship headed for America.Upon his arrival in New Orleans, he meets KARL VON MULLER. Mathias struggles to maintain his core beliefs and values while Karl challenges him to experience new things. This new life is an adventure, but he continues to torture himself over leaving Anna Marie behind and to question God's goodness. We travel with Mathias on a path of self-discovery as he struggles to find his identity.When Karl moves to Charles Town to begin building boats, he insists Mathias come to work for him. The subsequent years are filled with new friends and the building of his own business. His heart is captured by young ANNA ALSTED, a red-haired green-eyed beauty. They marry and begin a family. However, evidence of the same old evil practices comes to light when Otto arrives in this backwater town. Will Mathias run, again?Just before he leaves Lake Charles with his family, he receives a letter from Anna Marie and this brother and sister are finally re-united.The answer to Grace's question about when and where the historical abuse began seems to remain a mystery.