Friday, July 1, 2016
My Review: From This Moment
"She'd learned long ago that courage was not the absence of fear, but the willingness to confront it." Stella West
Stella West's artistic talent made her the toast of London, but when her beloved sister dies under mysterious circumstances she abandons everything and heads for Boston. With single-minded determination she fights to pierce the ring of secrecy surrounding her sister's death. Upon meeting Romulus White, a publisher with connections into every important power circle in the city, she quickly realizes he could be a valuable ally in navigating Boston society.
Romulus has been pursuing Stella for years to create art for his magazine. Her luminous illustrations are the missing piece he needs to propel his magazine to the forefront of the industry, and he will stop at nothing to get her on board.
Sparks fly the instant they join forces, but Romulus is unsettled by the unwelcome attraction he feels toward Stella, fearing she might be the one woman who could disrupt his hard-won independence. He may have finally met his match in Stella, but is helping her solve the mystery of her sister's death worth the risk to his publishing empire?
About the Author:
Elizabeth Camden is the author of eight historical novels and has been honored with both the RITA Award and the Christy Award. With a master's in history and a master's in library science, she is a research librarian by day and scribbles away on her next novel by night. She lives with her husband in Florida. Learn more at www.elizabethcamden.com.
My Review: 4 stars
Elizabeth Camden is one of my favorite historical authors and she rarely disappoints me. Her books are always so creative and dare to focus on topics that few others do: Watch-making, opium smuggling, tuberculosis, to name a few. This one falls right in with the others, with the focus being on lithography and magazine production, with a great mystery thrown into the mix. I loved the adventure and getting a glimpse into a setting that is unique and colorful!
Ms. Camden is an excellent writer and she always does a great job with the historical details and bring life to things that are so foreign to the modern world. Her words paint in broad strokes what Boston was like in 1897, with the construction of the first subway system and the incorporation of electricity into everyday life. I also really loved the mystery and seeing what investigation may have been like before the turn of the century. She definitely kept me guessing and on the edge of my seat, wondering what might happen next!
The characters were also excellent! Ms. Camden has built a reputation for creating characters that are not at all the norm, and these two definitely follow suit! Stella is an outspoken, creative, eccentric odd duck. She can be brash, but she can also be a lady when it suits her will. She is often abrupt, determined, and so many label her difficult. I frankly didn’t love her at once, but she slowly grew on me, as I saw more of who she is and not just how she behaves under exacting circumstances. Romulus is almost the exact opposite. He has many friends and is known to be easygoing with an attitude of good cheer more often than not. He can be determined, but he is so easily distracted by new things that catch his fancy, it doesn’t often last long. I loved his character because of the openness found in him. He is rather insecure, particularly when it comes to love, because of his flighty demeanor. He has a great many interests and loves getting lost in learning all he can about them. I immensely enjoyed getting to know his character! Oh, and I can’t forget to mention their dialogue! I loved the sparring between Stella and Romulus, as they butted heads, but also just generally picked on one another. I found myself laughing at the most random times, because it may have been started out as a serious scene, but something they would say would make me smile instead of becoming serious with the turn in conversation.
Honestly, there were a couple small things that bothered me a bit. First, as I’ve already mentioned, I didn’t particularly like Stella for a while. She’s an interesting character, but she’s so selfish and self-centered for much of the story. That made it rather difficult for me to get into the book right off. Though, to be fair, her behavior allowed for an excellent opportunity to add faith to the story. And she did grow on me after a bit, so I can’t be entirely put out with her. I also found it rather strange that the story comes from the villain’s view point just once, rather randomly near the end, then we never hear from them again. That was just a little odd. Despite those points, I did quite enjoy this book and am anxious to see what this author writes next!
I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction that breaks away from the norm!
I received an advanced copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.
You can also find my review here on Fiction411.com!
Thank you so much for taking the time to read my review! I hope you enjoyed it! I'll hopefully be getting back into a regular schedule of posting - though honestly, I don't know that I've ever really been that dependable. I shall endeavor to see what I can do.
Have a delightful day!
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