This book appealed to me for a couple of reasons, but one in particular stood out above all the other general ‘pick me’ signs that I saw in the pitch. The thing that caught my eye was the twist between historical fiction and magical realism/paranormal.
This book is set during the Great War (hello my favorite era) but yet has paranormal characters and the combo between the two interested me.
They sound like two very conflicting different genres and the first thing that I thought was ‘this could go one of two ways—really bad or really good’. So I agreed to review this one.
Knowing that it was the third in the series, I was prepared to be a little lost in the story but I had seen that many readers said it could stand alone so I was hopeful that that was truly the case.
A past life, a past war, and a past love. Peter St John can’t foresee a future until he confronts his past sins.
When photojournalist Peter St John returns home after a two-year absence, the life he’s been running from catches up. For years his mother’s presence, coupled with Pete’s own psychic gift, has triggered visits to 1917. There, he relives battles of the Great War, captures the heyday of Coney Island on canvas, and falls in love with an enchanting and enigmatic songstress named Esme. Present-day Pete still pines for Esme, and his love endures…but so does his vivid memory of killing her.
When he discovers family heirlooms that serve as proof of his crimes, Pete will have to finally confront his former life. He also meets a young woman—who is more than what she seems—with a curious connection to his family. As century-old secrets unravel, can Pete reconcile a murder from his past before it destroys his future? (summary from Goodreads).
I had a couple of people ask me if this book read ok as a stand alone and I struggled to answer that question. First of all—yes it could read as a stand alone. However, I don’t think I appreciated the story and characters as much as I would have had I started from the beginning if that makes sense.
There were other characters from the first two books, though they weren’t really the focus, I think I would have connected with them more had I had a more global understanding of series as a whole. Having said that though, I wasn’t sitting around wondering what the hell was going on and I enjoyed the story/plot, romance, and characters on their own.
I love how Spinella blended romance, time travel, mystery, suspense, history, and paranormal all together. She showed that she had a strong ability to write in all of these genres and I loved watching how she wove a greater story together across the genres.
But I will confess that I loved the romance the most. I’ve been looking for a good romance to read lately. I came off of reading a rather depressing romance and I was eager to read something that was a little more happy. This book isn’t romantic ‘fluff’ or over the top love/lust, I found that it was the perfect blend of the two.
For me, Esme was the most memorable character of the bunch. Personally I don’t like that name at all—-too much Twilight—-but the character herself was charming, interesting, and the one that I felt most connected to.
I definitely want to read the other books in this series. I am intrigued by Spinella’s writing style and am curious to meet her other characters. If you are looking for a quick read full of well written and interesting plot points, then pick this one up! For those of you who have Kindle Unlimited, it’s currently free!
Kindle Edition, 421 pagesPublished May 22nd 2018 by Montlake Romance
- Review copy provided by: Author/Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This book counts toward: NA
- Hosted by: NA
- Books for Challenge Completed: NA
Recommendation: 4 out of 5
Genre: Pararomance, historical fiction, time travel, magical realism
Laura Spinella’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Wednesday, June 6th: Books & Bindings
Monday, June 11th: Reading Reality
Tuesday, June 12th: The Lit Bitch
Thursday, June 14th: A Chick Who Reads
Monday, June 18th: @girlandherbooks
Tuesday, June 19th: Books a la Mode – author guest post
Wednesday, June 20th: What is That Book About
Monday, June 25th: A Night’s Dream of Books
Thursday, June 28th: Cheryl’s Book Nook
Tuesday, July 3rd: Mystery Suspense Reviews