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By: Gwenn Wright
Published by: CreateSpace
Format of Review Copy: Paperback
Recommendable for people who enjoy: historical fiction, mystery
Synopsis (from Amazon):
1896: The saga continues as young, headstrong Maria Smythe leaves her childhood home to pursue an education at a prestigious ladies’ college. Little does she suspect how sheltered her life has been, the dark secrets her father has kept or the imminent danger she now faces.
2010: Being home in St. Louis stirs up memories William Drexler III would rather forget. Haunted by disturbing nightmares he struggles through his days, trying to forget Rocky while attempting to discover the reason behind his family’s involvement with the Demures and von Strassenbergs. As he begins to unravel the mystery he finds that sometimes the truth is more dangerous than the lie.
First I need to say, that the author of this book I consider a “friend” so, like with all my other author type friends= I have really high expectations of them and their writings. So keep that in mind, while reading my review. I am probably a little harder on the “friend folk” than I would be had I not known them at all… Yes, I have issues. LOL Also, I am going to try to write this up without giving away any spoilers to this or book one. Hope I can find a way to do that… Ok, with that out of the way.
This story takes place in modern day, 1990’s, 1800s, and in places like Chicago, St Louis, Massachusetts, Maine, England. It jumps around. A lot. The story is told from multiple POV so each POV is from a different time/location, etc. It is very hard to keep it all straight. Or, I should say, it was hard for ME to keep it straight.
Where as book one focused mainly on Rocky/William III and Katherine/Viktor, book two follows multiple timelines and characters. Some chapters follow William III (both modern day and getting some back story on him). Some chapters follow Maria – who is the main character from book 1’s – grandmother (or great grandmother, I’m confused –
What is the puzzle: well, Who is Rocky – how does her family have all this money for her to inherit, who and why is someone trying to kill her, and how does III and his family tie into this whole mess? Its a big mess that you almost can’t even grasp unless you actually sit down and read the books. Honestly, I don’t know how to tell you about the story – without giving you THE ENTIRE STORY.
Just like I thought with book 1 (according to my goodreads updates) I had a real Love/Hate thing going on with this book. Even though there are some typos, and the back and forth POV’s + years is so confusing – the story is still great. Does that even make sense?
I guess I hated the writing “style”. Not the writing itself, but the manner in which it was delivered. The back and forth in timelines, chapters by different characters, back and forth back and forth, who? wha? when? Huh?! That would be me, not liking the style of the book. Toward the back half of the book, some of the chapters started having not only dates but character names in the heading – so that helped me. A LOT.
I wish the entire book had been done that way. Regardless of my confusion, when the book finished, I was like “OMG! WHAT?! Where’s the next book!” left drooling, needing more pages…
This series, I think is different than anything out there or at least that I have read. That makes it worth the extra effort to keep everything straight. There are “thrilling” suspenseful moments, action, mystery, and even romance all jumbled up in one big story. So I say worth the read – but you MUST read book 1 first, or you will be completely lost and you might need to take notes.
Contains some violence.