Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Book Review: "The River of No Return" by Bee Ridgway

"The River of No Return" by Bee Ridgway
First published in 2013 (and in paperback with a better cover in 2014!)
452 pages
My rating: 5 out of 5
(image source)

The cover of "The River of No Return" sums up its plot pretty concisely; this is indeed "a novel of love and time travel" -- and an excellent, captivating, delicious novel at that.

There's a wonderful cast of characters, the rich atmosphere of Georgian England, the ability to travel in and manipulate time, mystery, romance, conspiracy, espionage, a big ugly dog and a horse named Marigold... what's not to love?

We first meet Nick Davenant in Vermont in 2013, where he's been living a life of leisure and luxury for the last decade. In his past life -- before he "jumped" to the 21st century to escape a dealthy blow from a dragoon in battle -- he was a young British marquess, powerful, wealthy and rather arrogant.

Nick was met upon arrival in 2013 by the Guild, a secret organization that assists and governs those who possess the ability to jump in time. He was schooled in 200 years of popular culture, very comfortably set up with money, house, car and every creature comfort, and has happily gone about life as a well-off modern man. But after 10 years, Nick's perfectly contented existence is interrupted when the Guild makes a request of him -- he is to go back to 1815, something he had been told was impossible, and complete a mysterious assignment. Nick soon learns that there is far more to the Guild -- an organization he finds to be full of secrets -- and his ability to jump in time than he had ever imagined.

Back in 1815, Julia Percy is mourning the death of her beloved grandfather and guardian, Earl Darchester, who had occasionally entertained Julia with his little trick of stopping time, and often returned from trips with strange things like rocks with skeleton impressions and shockingly life-like paintings. Julia's life is a mass of confusion -- not only has her vile cousin come to take over the estate, but she has only just discovered her own ability to affect time. And she has a horrible suspicion that her grandfather knew of her talent and kept it from her all those years. Why?

I don't want to say more, for fear of spoiling the tantalizing plot. But "The River of No Return" is probably the best book I've read this year. The writing was good, the plot was riveting and the characters were excellently drawn. There were some loose threads left hanging at the end, and I'm crossing my fingers for a sequel!

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like an interesting read. It may join my long list of books to read.


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