The Lost Castle – A Split-Time Novel of Love

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Deb’s Dozen: Three women, three periods of history, one castle, all intertwined in love.

Kristy Cambron has written a delightful split-time novel in The Lost Castle. I thought I’d seen it all with the split-time device, but Cambron uses the technique in an intriguingly different manner.

The book begins in the present with Ellie at the castle. “A forgotten photo had been taken there in the summer of 1944. The very place her grandmother had once stood. The scene where her story had begun.” Intriguing beginning-I expected to be taken back to 1944, but instead, we jump back to 1789 to discover Aveline Sainte-Moreau having received a very disturbing letter. She is at the castle for her engagement announcement, but all is not well in that world.

Back to the present, and Ellie called to the nursing home where her grandmother resides lost in the depths of Alzheimer’s Disease. But this day is different. Her grandmother, Viola Carver, or Lady Vi as she’s been known, seems more aware of reality. She pulls out a book written in French, from which falls a picture of Lady Vi and a handsome young man-not the grandfather she know. Lady Vi tells her she must go to the Sleeping Beauty castle in France to find him and tell him she’s ready-to become his wife!

Now we go to 1944, to meet the young Viola Hart, who has volunteered to work with the Baker Street Irregulars during the war. And back further to 1789. As Cambron weaves the story, we are drawn into each woman’s life, to the decisions she must make, to the loves of their lives. Once I started reading, I read through the night to finish the book. Five Stars! You’ll want to buy The Lost Castle, so you can read their stories and take joy in the ending. This book is book one of a series-can’t wait for the next one!

split-timeKristy Cambron calls herself a vintage-inspired storyteller. She’s written several novels that touch on the secrets of the past and how those secrets affect the present. She has a degree in Art History and lives in Indiana with her husband and three sons.

Thomas Nelson gave me a copy of The Lost Castle, but I was in no way obligated to write a review.

When the Morning Glory Blooms, So Does Love

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Deb’s Dozen: Three generations of women tied together by love and their morning glories.

Cynthia Ruchti has written a fascinating book in When the Morning Glory Blooms. She skips back and forth among three generations of women to weave their stories together.

The book begins with Becky. Her daughter, Lauren, has had a child out of wedlock. Most of the care for their grandchild falls to Becky. Although she loves Jackson, she can help but be exasperated with the laissez faire attitude of their daughter, who won’t disclose the name of the father.

Jump back to 1951 and Ivy. The Korean Conflict is raging and Ivy’s fiancĂ© is there. Ivy is at home and with child. She’s living with her father, who has given her two months to find another place to live as he’s disappointed in her actions. Ivy is an aide at a nursing home where she meets Anna, a delightful old woman with a tale to tell.

Jump back to the 1890s and Anna. Anna is called to start a home for unwed mothers. She has inherited a house she is determined to fix up by herself. Befriended by a man named Puff, who helps her get things back in shape, and the pastor and his wife, Anna is able to open the home.

The three women have much in common and are very real and sympathetic characters. Their stories parallel in many senses. What times them together through time are the morning glories. You will want to buy When the Morning Glory Blooms to read their stories and rejoice in the outcomes. Five Stars.

GenerationsCynthia Ruchti is a much-awarded novelist and all around great person. She has thirty-three years of broadcast experience and speaks at many conferences. She is also an agent with Books & Such Literary Management. Cynthia and her husband live in the heart of Wisconsin. You can find out more about Cynthia and her books at cynthiaruchti.com.

Abingdon Press gave me a copy of When the Morning Glory Blooms, and I also purchased the e-book, but I was in no way obligated to write a review.

Police Procedural Follows Threads of Suspicion

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Deb’s Dozen: Detailed police procedural with Evie Blackwell leads to a cold case solution.

Threads of Suspicion is a detailed police procedural in this new Evie Blackwell Cold Case book. Evie has been chosen by the governor to work on a new Missing Persons Task Force that is trying to solve cold cases around the state. She and an associate, David Marshal, have two unrelated cases located in suburban Chicago.

Evie and David share office space and serve as each other’s sounding boards as they work through the details of their cases, come up with theories, and try to tie the links together. Henderson tells us the process in gory detail as well. If you’re interested in the minutia of an investigation gone cold, you’ll love this book. I do but must admit at times I was skimming rather than reading those details.

To make the story more interesting, Evie and David both have love interests, but not each other. Evie’s is a successful banker who will propose when she comes to a decision about him, and David’s is famous singer, Maggie May McDonald with the band Triple M. Things become interesting when their cases intersect as well as their personal lives

Henderson knows the details of police work and explains them well-sometimes too well. She also knows how to write characters. Evie and David come alive and you care for them-as well as some of their suspects. I give Threads of Suspicion four stars, because I like police procedurals.

Dee Henderson is the award-winning author of the O’Malley Family series, which first drew me to her writing as well as the Uncommon Heroes series among others. She’s won or been nominated for the RITA, the Christy, and the ECPA Gold Medallion. Find out more about her and her books at deehenderson.com.

Bethany House gave me a copy of Threads of Suspicion, but I was in no way obligated to write a review.