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Book 52: The River of No Return by Bee Ridgway

Book 52: The River of No Return.
Author: Bee Ridgway, 2013.
Genre: Historical Fiction. Time Travel. Romance. Adventure.
Other Details: Hardback. 546 pages.

“You are now a member of the Guild. There is no return.” Two hundred years after he was about to die on a Napoleonic battlefield, Lord Nicholas Falcott wakes up in a hospital bed in twenty-first century London. The Guild, a secretive organization that controls time travel, helps him make a new life in the modern world. But Nick yearns for home and for one beautiful woman in particular, now lost to history.

Back in 1815, that very woman, Julia Percy, finds herself the guardian of a family secret inherited from her enigmatic grandfather... how to manipulate time. But there are those who seek to possess Julia’s power and she begins to realize she is in the gravest peril. The Guild’s rules are made to be broken, and Nick discovers how to travel back to the nineteenth century and his ancestral home. Fate and the fraying fabric of time draw Nick and Julia together once again . . . soon enough, they are caught up in an adventure that puts the future of the world into their hands.
-synopsis from author's website.

I found this a highly engaging time travel romance that kept me glued to the settee for a couple of days. I was a little surprised that the romantic element was so central though I felt it was handled well and did not overwhelm the other aspects of the narrative. Given the shifts in time for Nicholas it was quite amusing to see how he coped going back to his original time period following his re-education into the language and sensibilities of the 21st Century.

My only issue was that the ending seemed a little rushed and while some plot threads were worked out there seemed to be quite a lot of unanswered questions about the Guild. It seemed to be demanding a sequel and given how well received the novel was I expected that there would be news of the same. I was able to track down news on the author's page that she was "roaring ahead on the sequel". This pleased me and I will be keeping an eye out for it.

Overall, I found the novel's premise of time travel and the Guild's role was very interesting and a creative approach to the subject. The historical detail was also excellent. I felt it was an accomplished début.
Tags: adventure, historical romance, time travel
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