Thursday, October 22, 2020

Time-Slip Novels Not To Be Missed

I've read the occasional time-slip, but it doesn't seem like there's a huge selection of them in Christian fiction. Thankfully it seems as though this category is growing. After having read more in the past year or so I'm realizing how much I enjoy them! Here are a few that I've read and thoroughly enjoyed.

I was introduced to Amanda Dykes a year and a half ago when she released Whose Waves These Are. Wow! It was such a fantastic book. She has an exceptional gift for writing. She has a novella that goes along with that book called Up From The Sea. This summer she released Set the Stars Alight. I remember seeing her cover for the first time... I could not WAIT to read it!

Whose Waves These Are

In the wake of WWII, a grieving fisherman submits a poem to a local newspaper: a rallying cry for hope, purpose . . . and rocks. Send me a rock for the person you lost, and I will build something life-giving. When the poem spreads farther than he ever intended, Robert Bliss's humble words change the tide of a nation. Boxes of rocks inundate the tiny, coastal Maine town, and he sets his calloused hands to work, but the building halts when tragedy strikes.

Decades later, Annie Bliss is summoned back to Ansel-by-the-Sea when she learns her Great-Uncle Robert, the man who became her refuge during the hardest summer of her youth, is now the one in need of help. What she didn't anticipate was finding a wall of heavy boxes hiding in his home. Long-ago memories of stone ruins on a nearby island trigger her curiosity, igniting a fire in her anthropologist soul to uncover answers.

She joins forces with the handsome and mysterious harbor postman, and all her hopes of mending the decades-old chasm in her family seem to point back to the ruins. But with Robert failing fast, her search for answers battles against time, a foe as relentless as the ever-crashing waves upon the sea. 

Set the Stars Alight

Lucy Clairmont's family treasured the magic of the past, and her childhood fascination with stories of the high seas led her to become a marine archaeologist. But when tragedy strikes, it's Dashel, an American forensic astronomer, and his knowledge of the stars that may help her unearth the truth behind the puzzle she's discovered in her family home.

Two hundred years earlier, the seeds of love are sown between a boy and a girl who spend their days playing in a secret sea cave, while the privileged young son of the estate looks on, wishing to join. As the children grow and war leads to unthinkable heartbreak, a story of love, betrayal, sacrifice, and redemption unfolds, held secret by the passage of time.

As Lucy and Dash journey to a mysterious old estate on the East Sussex coast, their search leads them to a community of souls and a long-hidden tale that may hold the answers--and the healing--they so desperately seek.

What can I say about Jaime Jo Wright? She is an incredible author. I had a couple of her books for quite a while before I finally caved and read one. Let's just say, for this big ol' chicken, the titles of her books as well as the covers made me a little wary. Ha! I finally dove in with The Curse of Misty Wayfair. C'mon, The CURSE of Misty Wayfair. hahahaha It was SO good! Then when I saw the cover of her newest release The Haunting at Bonaventure Circus. yea, yea, yea, this one made me nervous, too! Well, we're reading it for my book club this month so you know I loved it! I also have her book Echoes Among the Stones (tombstones are on the cover... spooky) and The House at Foster Hill (creepy, dusty old house entryway) on my to-be-read shelves!

The Curse of Misty Wayfair

Left at an orphanage as a child, Thea Reed vowed to find her mother someday. Now grown, her search takes her to Pleasant Valley, Wisconsin, in 1908. When clues lead her to a mental asylum, Thea uses her experience as a post-mortem photographer to gain access and assist groundskeeper Simeon Coyle in photographing the patients and uncovering the secrets within. However, she never expected her personal quest would reawaken the legend of Misty Wayfair, a murdered woman who allegedly haunts the area and whose appearance portends death. 

A century later, Heidi Lane receives a troubling letter from her mother--who is battling dementia--compelling her to travel to Pleasant Valley for answers to her own questions of identity. When she catches sight of a ghostly woman who haunts the asylum ruins in the woods, the long-standing story of Misty Wayfair returns--and with it, Heidi's fear for her own life.

As two women across time seek answers about their identities and heritage, can they overcome the threat of the mysterious curse that has them inextricably intertwined?

The Haunting at Bonaventure Circus

The Bonaventure Circus is a refuge for many, but Pippa Ripley was rejected from its inner circle as a baby. When she receives mysterious messages from someone called the "Watchman," she is determined to find him and the connection to her birth. As Pippa's search leads her to a man seeking justice for his murdered sister and evidence that a serial killer has been haunting the circus train, she must decide if uncovering her roots is worth putting herself directly in the path of the killer.

Present Day
The old circus train depot will either be torn down or preserved for historical importance, and its future rests on real estate project manager Chandler Faulk's shoulders. As she dives deep into the depot's history, she's also balancing a newly diagnosed autoimmune disease and the pressures of single motherhood. When she discovers clues to the unsolved murders of the past, Chandler is pulled into a story far darker and more haunting than even an abandoned train depot could portend.

I've only listened to one of Erin Bartels' novels on audiobook, The Words Between Us. That was a story that came with such a mystery! It was completely unexpected, but thoroughly enjoyable! I was torn between caring more about Peter and caring more about Robin. I also really liked the supporting characters!

The Words Between Us

Robin Windsor has spent most of her life under an assumed name, running from her family's ignominious past. She thought she'd finally found sanctuary in her rather unremarkable used bookstore just up the street from the marina in River City, Michigan. But the store is struggling and the past is hot on her heels.

When she receives an eerily familiar book in the mail on the morning of her father's scheduled execution, Robin is thrown back to the long-lost summer she met Peter Flynt, the perfect boy who ruined everything. That book--a first edition Catcher in the Rye--is soon followed by the other books she shared with Peter nearly twenty years ago, with one arriving in the mail each day. But why would Peter be making contact after all these years? And why does she have a sinking feeling that she's about to be exposed all over again?

With evocative prose that recalls the classic novels we love, Erin Bartels pens a story that shows that words--the ones we say, the ones we read, and the ones we write--have more power than we imagine.

Ok, I hate to admit this, but it's been forever and a day since I've read any books by Susan Meissner. In the late 2000s I took a long break from reading. I read here and there, but it wasn't much. I know she has a LOT of books out, many I want to read, but fitting them in... you should see my TBR shelves. They're packed with books that need reading. Heck, I might even have a couple of her books on them. Probably on audiobook or my Kindle. lol Anywho, back in 2009 I interviewed Susan when her book The Shape of Mercy came out. It's about the Salem witch trials. Oh man, this book tugged at my heart! Lady in Waiting is another of her books I read. She's so fantastic at split time novels!!

The Shape of Mercy

Leaving a life of privilege to strike out on her own, Lauren Durough breaks with convention and her family’s expectations by choosing a state college over Stanford and earning her own income over accepting her ample monthly allowance. She takes a part-time job from 83-year-old librarian Abigail Boyles, who asks Lauren to transcribe the journal entries of her ancestor Mercy Hayworth, a victim of the Salem witch trials.  

Almost immediately, Lauren finds herself drawn to this girl who lived and died four centuries ago. As the fervor around the witch accusations increases, Mercy becomes trapped in the worldview of the day, unable to fight the overwhelming influence of snap judgments and superstition, and Lauren realizes that the secrets of Mercy’s story extend beyond the pages of her diary, living on in the mysterious, embittered Abigail. 

The strength of her affinity with Mercy forces Lauren to take a startling new look at her own life, including her relationships with Abigail, her college roommate, and a young man named Raul. But on the way to the truth, will Lauren find herself playing the helpless defendant or the misguided judge? Can she break free from her own perceptions and see who she really is?

Lady in Waiting

Manhattan in the current day: Antique-store owner Jane Lindsay had never expected that her husband of 22 years would walk out on their marriage. But when it happens, she feels powerless to stop the course of events that follow. Then Jane finds an old ring in a box of ancient relics and discovers a Latin inscription in the band along with just one recognizable word: Jane. In the sixteenth-century: Lucy Day becomes the dressmaker to Lady Jane Grey, an innocent young woman whose fate seems to be controlled by a dangerous political climate, one threatening to deny her true love and pursuit of her own interests. As the stories of both Janes unfold, it becomes clear that each woman has far more influence over her life than she once imagined. It all comes down to the choices each makes despite the realities they face.

Cathy Goehlke came on my radar this summer and her writing blew me away! I had no idea what I was missing having not read her novels before. Now, I have only listened to her books on audio, but they were well worth the experience. I enjoyed the narrators on the books I've listened to. The Medallion was the first book I listened to and it was excellent! If I could give a book more than 5 stars this would be it! As soon as I finished The Medallion I immediately started listening to Secrets She Kept. Now, I will say that these books are incredibly emotional and realistic. They're set in WWII during the Nazi regime.


The Medallion

An illuminating tale of courage, sacrifice, and survival.

Two couples’ lives are ravaged by Hitler’s mad war but forever linked through the fate of one little girl.

Warsaw, 1939. The German blitzkrieg has shattered the city. As Sophie Kumiega awaits news of her husband, deployed with the Polish Air Force, she is determined to keep her unborn baby safe. She didn’t count on being drawn into the dangerous and all-consuming plight of her neighbors.

Rosa and Itzhak Dunovich never imagined welcoming their longed-for first child in the Jewish ghetto, or letting anything tear their family apart. But Rosa soon faces a terrifying reality: to save their daughter’s life, she must send her into hiding. Her only hope of finding her after the war—if any of them survive—is the half medallion she places around her daughter’s neck.

Inspired by true events of Poland’s darkest days and brightest heroes, The Medallion paints a stunning portrait of war and its aftermath, daring us to believe that when all seems lost, God can make a way forward.

Secrets She Kept

The secret a mother was forbidden to share . . . the consequences a daughter could not redeem—but will risk everything in her attempt.

All her life, Hannah Sterling longed for a close relationship with her estranged mother. Following Lieselotte’s death, Hannah unlocks secrets of her mother’s mysterious past, including the discovery of a grandfather living in Germany.

Thirty years earlier, Lieselotte’s father, ascending the ranks of the Nazi party, demands a marriage for his daughter to help advance his career.  But Lieselotte is in love—and her beloved Lukas secretly works against the Reich. How far will her father go to achieve his goal?

Both Hannah’s and Lieselotte’s stories unfold as Hannah travels to Germany to meet her grandfather, who hides wartime secrets of his own. Longing for connection, yet shaken by all she uncovers, Hannah must decide if she can atone for her family’s tragic past, and how their legacy will shape her future.

Right now I'm currently listening to my first book by Kristy Cambron. I seem to have an affinity for stories set in the time of WWII and didn't even realize it. I had been wanting to read/listen to a book by Kristy for a while and just grabbed this one. lol The narrator has quite the task of reading aloud in a couple different languages and genders with The Butterfly and the Violin. This book is part of a series. I also want to read her Castle series as well! The Paris Dressmaker just came out so that's on my tbr list now also!

The Butterfly and the Violin

Mysterious painting breathes hope and beauty into the darkest corners of Auschwitz--and the loneliest hearts of Manhattan.

Manhattan art dealer Sera James watched her world crumble at the altar two years ago, and her heart is still fragile. Her desire fordistraction reignites a passion for a mysterious portrait she first saw as a younggirl--a painting of a young violinist with piercing blue eyes.
In her search for the painting, Sera crosses paths withWilliam Hanover--the grandson of a wealthy California real estate mogul--who maybe the key to uncovering the hidden masterpiece. Together Sera and Williamslowly unravel the story behind the painting's subject: Austrian violinistAdele Von Bron.

A darling of the Austrian aristocracy of 1942, talented violinist, and daughter to a high-ranking member of the Third Reich, Adele risks everything when she begins smuggling Jews out of Vienna. In a heartbeat, her life of prosperity and privilege dissolves into a world of starvation and barbed wire.

As Sera untangles the secrets behind the painting, she finds beauty in the most unlikely of places: the grim camps of Auschwitz and the inner recesses of her own troubled heart.

Which other time-slip authors have you been enjoying? I'm always looking for new suggestions!


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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.