14 January 2015

Disturbingly Beautiful Tour Stop!

 Is it really possible that somewhere in time, the perfect paradox could be created? Does romance really stand a chance, and could it ever flourish amidst so many intricacies and broken lives? How can a nineteenth-century governess unknowingly cause so much devastation?

As Nell’s world opens up, we follow her on a complex journey, on which she discovers love, loss and betrayal, and is forced to play a dangerous game from which there appears to be no escape.

An intricate family plot slowly begins to unravel, in which she finds herself centre stage. She was never supposed to leave Haunchcroft estate, and he will do everything in his power to keep her there…

Could a possible rip in time be the salvation that Nell seeks?

“I find you disturbingly beautiful,” are the contradictory words bestowed upon the governess by her master.

Mr Buchannan’s infatuation is a shadow from which Nell cannot escape. The feelings he holds for her are not reciprocated, and though his lust soon turns to love, Nell’s feelings towards him turn to hatred. Dreams and a love of literature are Nell’s only escapism from the downtrodden life she leads as a governess in the nineteenth century.

One night, an intruder on the estate catches Nell off guard, but she gives chase; a decision that leads her through an opening in time between the centuries, where she finds equality, true friendship and a completely different outlook on life.

Despite using this to her advantage to escape the advances of her unwanted suitor, she is somewhat perturbed when she unexpectedly finds him at her side in the twenty-first century. Will love conquer all, or will time always stand in their way?
I was really intrigued by the description of this book, so I thought I’d give it a whirl.  I have to admit, my feelings are decidedly undecided, even as I write this review.  Allow me to explain…
Nell is a governess with a wild imagination and a great love of books.  She is hoping to find a new job soon, one that will better utilize her vast knowledge. She has a connection with her young charge, Abigale, and is devastated by the loss of the sickly girl. She is determined to leave the estate she has worked at for so long but her employer, Mr. Buchannan, does not want to give her a reference but instead wants her to marry him.  He doesn’t go about this is the most, um, gentleman-like way and Nell is angry and offended by him.  Then she sees a mysterious stranger, a man that seems familiar to her (the man in her dreams, perhaps?) and runs after him, only to be catapulted into the future.  Now, the question is if Nell’s fate is the literal future or not?
As I said, it was an interesting premise.  It’s like a time traveling Jane Eyre.  And as a fan of the sisters Bronte, I wonder if I expected a little too much from a book that struck me as similar.  Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the time travel twist, it was fun and it kept the plot original and interesting, but I found that I didn’t quite like the heroine as much as I would have liked.  She was a bit flaky, but seemed to roll with the time travel punches pretty well.
I would have liked a bit more explanation for the mechanics of the time travel.  In that respect, I thought the world building failed a bit.  It was very vague; as a relatively short story, it could have gone into greater detail with a few of the characters and the world, but didn’t. However, I still found myself enjoying the story and the twists and turns of the plot.  It was original, which I think is a pretty hard thing to pull off these days.
Overall, even with a few holes in the plot I found myself enjoying this.  As it stands now, I’m giving it 3 stars.  I almost feel like this is a great first draft for a story that goes a little deeper.

  Laura Wells is a swimming teacher, with a love of books, animals and, of course, Jane Austen. Once a national swimmer, she now runs three swim schools of her own. She enjoys spending her spare time with her family and two mad Shiba Inus. She lives in Staffordshire, England.

Judy Wells works at a school; in her spare time she enjoys writing poetry and novels, and spending time with her animals. She also lives in Staffordshire, England.

Laura and Judy are a mother and daughter duo; with Judy’s love of poetry and writing and Laura’s ideas, they work extremely well together. Time-travel and historical romance novels are their passion, and they hope that after you have read their books, you will feel the same.

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