Asylum. A secret past hidden for generations.

Greed, corruption and betrayal—all the intrigues of the Gilded Age gone wrong in this modern Gothic thriller.

Unforgettable characters tell an emotional story of scandal and guilt.

“Even as I was doing other things my mind kept going back to the characters. … I’ve already recommended Asylum to my mother.”

Asylum, book front cover #thriller #historical #suspenseShocking family secrets remain buried for generations in this tragic saga of a privileged, albeit ill-fated, family of a wealthy Northeast industrialist.

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On an innocent day in 1899, while her father travels abroad, twelve-year-old Maggie Delito, daughter of the wealthy industrialist, witnesses a shocking scandal. The next day, she’s dragged from her family’s estate and locked in an asylum to ensure her silence. Beneath the noted asylum’s polish of respectability, a wicked villainy hides in dank shadows—and Maggie fears she will be its next victim.

Seventy-five years later, Laura Delito inherits more than assets when her prestigious family’s mysterious past comes knocking. After sacrificing an independent career on the brink of success, she assumes control of Delito’s failing jewelry business while daring to expose its ghosts—a strange old woman, cryptic messages, backroom betrayals, and a rare antique key that might unlock the truth. As she pursues clues from the Northeast to North Africa, she fails to see danger looming close to home.


Available in Print and eBook where books are sold.

Bookstores/Libraries: Ingram • Individuals: your favorite online or local bookstore
ISBN 978-0-9892261-2-7  print • $15.95 • 5.5 x 8.5 • soft cover • 332 pages
ISBN 978-0-9892261-3-4  eBook • $7.99
AmazonBarnes & NobleRakuten Kobo eBookWalmart

Free Preview: Chapter One, 1974 and Chapter Two, 1899


Asylum. A Book Club Favorite.

Set in New England in 1899 and the mid-1970s, periods of transition with the rise and fall of manufacturing, 
changing mores and folkways, and struggles for equal rights, prompts passionate discussion 
of social and economic issues that continue to resonate.

ALA Book Club Central’s September Picks: Historical Fiction

ASYLUM, a dark suspense saga, among Sisters in Crime selections for Book Club Central's September Picks: Historical Fiction

Book Club Central with Sisters in Crime has released its September Picks: Historical Fiction. We’re proud that Asylum: a dark suspense saga, was selected to be a September Pick, and honored to be among such talent.

Book Club Central is an initiative of the American Library Association.

Book Club Endorsements of Asylum

“We read Asylum for my book club and we loved it! I read it in two days. 
It had everything from intrigue, romance, and suspense.”

— C. Bernhardt, Ladies’ Book Club

“I think of the small child mysteriously sent away and her father’s search to bring his cherished daughter home. A strong plot and plenty of subplots weave through two time frames and kept me thinking about 
what the characters might do. I really enjoyed reading Asylum with my book club and many others will too.”

— K. Berube, Southington Book Club

“A well-researched suspense thriller, Asylum leaves you waiting to turn each page until you come to a well-written resolution.”

— K. Webster, Ladies’ Book Club

“If you like suspense, Asylum is a great read and I had difficulty putting the book down! The character development, the unfolding story, the vivid descriptions! I encourage mystery fans and book clubs to add this exciting mystery to their schedules!”

— N. Moore, Rocky Hill Book Club 

“I would recommend Asylum to all readers and book clubs. I could not put it down until it was finished. Even as I was doing other things my mind kept going back to the characters.

— L. Colk, Southington Book Club

Awards, Endorsements & Reviews of Asylum, a dark suspense saga

 Book Club Central, an initiative of the American Library AssociationA September 2019 Pick: Historical Fiction by Sisters in Crime for Book Club Central, an initiative of the American Library Association


Winner IPNE Book Awards

Winner, IPNE Book Awards Mystery Fiction Category

Independent Publishers of New England, Annual Book Awards, Entries judged by a panel of New England librarians.


5-Star Review by Readers Favorite

Readers’ Favorite® 5-Star Rating

“A fascinating mystery that grabs you with its unique plot. Asylum is a poignant dark story that reverts to 1899, describing Rosa’s past in one chapter, then current events associated with (granddaughter) Laura in another. … An interesting and touching drama … It also gives an insightful account of previous asylum conditions. … A lot of suspense that begins in the first chapter and continues to the conclusion. Worth reading.” 5-Stars – Reviewed by Michelle Stanley for Readers’ Favorite®



Shameful family secrets. A heroine I can’t forget. A masterfully written story that kept me reading long into the night. Asylum checks all the boxes for a modern Gothic must-read.”

— Sadie Hartwell, author, Tangled Web Mysteries

Dark deeds in shadowy halls haunt generations in Kathryn Orzech’s Asylum. A must read.”

— Marian Lanouette, author, Jake Carrington Thrillers

An intricately woven mystery with well-developed characters, Asylum pulls the reader in on the first few pages. Kathryn Orzech skillfully unfolds the story along separate timelines, seamlessly moving between centuries, in a search for clues on two continents. Take Asylum to the beach or in front of the fireplace … or anywhere. Just don’t go down the dark tunnel alone.”

— Penny Goetjen, author, Precipice Mysteries

Family secrets from the 19th century send shock waves through time in this suspenseful multi-generational saga. You’re gonna love it!”

— Rhonda Lane, author & blogger

Featured on top book blogs.

Reading Renee, Asylum: a dark suspense saga #Review @KathrynObooks @HuffPost @HuffPostBooks
Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers, Crafts with Anastasia—A design job at The Napier Co. inspired both the protagonist and the fictional family jewelry business in Asylum.
I Smell Sheep, books, movies and comics review blog. “Thank you, Meryl Streep. You made me a better writer.”
Lisa Haselton’s Reviews & Interviews, two Sisters in Crime chat about books and writing.
Cheryl’s Book Nook, “Talking Asylum with Kathryn Orzech”


Goodreads reviews of Asylum, a dark suspense saga


#historical #thriller #mystery #suspense #mustread