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Thursday, February 08, 2018

Dual Timeline Mystery/Romance Clean and Uplifting

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

Boston, 2015—Two years ago, Anaya "Annie" David's life changed in an instant when a bomb exploded at the 2015 Boston Marathon.  Although her injuries were relatively minor, she's plagued with guilt over the fact that her niece, Grace—whom Annie convinced to enter the race—lost a leg because of the bombing.  Haunted by the traumatizing event, Annie has distanced herself from Grace and her livid mother.  When she decides to try to repair the damage to these relationships, she makes a startling discovery in her sister's house that sets her on the road to finding the man who rescued her on the day of the bombing.  She's been meaning to return the heirloom ring he loaned her, an antique-looking piece that has given her strength every day since she received it.  When she meets handsome Brad Kilroy, the two begin researching the ring, which has a rich, surprising history.

Boston, 1770—Alone in a dangerous town, 17-year-old Liberty Caldwell has to find a way to survive.  When she's offered a position as housemaid in a home where Redcoat officers live, she doesn't have much choice but to accept.  She may be branded a traitor, but she has to look after herself until her brother arrives.  Although she knows she shouldn't, Liberty becomes close to Alexander Smythe, a kind officer who protects her from his housemate, an older man with more sinister designs on Liberty.  When the inevitable happens, she has to flee.  She takes Alexander's family ring to remember him by—and to sell, if needed.  In a city erupting with violence, she knows she must be strong.  The ring lends her strength as she does what she must to survive.

Separated by centuries and united by an heirloom piece of jewelry, two Boston women wounded in traumatic circumstances must find the strength and resilience to survive their separate challenges and trials.  Compelled to find out what happened to Liberty, Annie will look to the past for answers that will teach her about the redeeming power of hope, resilience, and love.

Freedom's Ring, a debut novel by Heidi Chiavaroli, tells an uplifting, faith-promoting story narrated by two strong women.  I dig dual-timeline plots, although I often find the past stories interest me more than the present ones.  This is the case with Freedom's Ring.  Although I enjoyed the genealogical mystery-solving in Annie's day, I found her to be a bit dull.  With not enough personality or tension in her relationship with Brad, her tale got a little too humdrum for me.  Liberty's sections are much more exciting.  While I liked, but didn't love, Freedom's Ring, I found it to be a clean, engaging story that is inspiring without being preachy.  Chiavaroli's sophomore novel comes out in May and I'll definitely be giving it a go.

(Readalikes:  Reminds me of dual-timeline books by Susan Meissner)


If this were a movie, it would be rated:

for violence

To the FTC, with love:  Another library fine find


1 comment:

  1. Interesting. I’m reading a kind of dual storyline book right now and am preferring the present story line over the flash backs. I don’t know if it really could be considered a dual story line now that I think about it but now I’m thinking about my preference. Past or present?


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