Readers, I have something to confess… I am a librarian who has never read a Stephen King book. Shocking, I know. In my defense, I am not a horror fan and anything I read or consume that is even remotely horror is very specific (I know what I can handle.) But Mr. King has written various genres so that’s where my excuse falls apart. So why this book as my first King? Besides having been recommended to me by numerous friends, I LOVE time travel and will read anything about it. Having read this, I am now mad that I haven’t read King books before and waited so long to read this one. Have you ever started a book and liked it so much that you subconsciously read it really, really slowly in order to make it last? Only me? This is how I felt reading this book. I didn’t want it to end yet couldn’t wait to see what would happen, simultaneously. I know I am late to the game but I cannot recommend this book enough.
Historical fiction is a genre that I don’t normally read. I have found that I prefer reading about the actual history event as opposed to a fictionalized telling of it. There are exceptions to this of course but I struggle to find historical fiction books that I love. This book hasn’t changed my mind on the genre but I did enjoy the mystery of the story and the writing was well done.
I don’t know how to write this review or recommend this book because while I didn’t end up enjoying it as much as I thought I would, it’s beautifully written and I could see the story appealing to fans of magical realism and religious fiction. But about 30% into this book, I realized that it wasn’t my cup of tea and while I would have usually stopped reading, I received this book as an advanced reader copy and felt I owed it to the author and publisher to give it a shot and write an honest review.
This was my first Alyssa Cole book and I can safely say that I am a FAN. After reading this book, I want to read everything she has written and recommended. I am always looking to read more books by women and women of color and Cole has been on my radar based on the great reviews her books get and how well her books circulate at my library. I’m so glad I finally picked up one of her books. The premise is what got me interested in this book (and it fits a challenge requirement for me) but the writing, the story, and the characters are what kept me reading. This was an incredible historical romance and I highly recommend it.
It took me a long time to read this book, not because it wasn’t good or because it’s over 400 pages. It took me a while to read it because the language used and the writing style was unique and beautiful and I wanted to take my time savoring every word and phrase written on the page. Although it took me a few chapters to get used to the way Lindsay Faye writes and her use of period-appropriate terms once I was able to wrap my head around her style, I was hooked. I normally don’t read historical fiction but this book was great and I highly recommend it.