This is a dual timeline novel, set in Round Hill, North Carolina, in both 1965 and 2010. In 1965, Ellie has decided to volunteer for SCOPE (Summer Community Organization and Political Education), which organized students in an effort to help African Americans in the South register to vote. She expected her family to object, but was not prepared for the level of anger aimed her way. In 2010, Kayla has just lost her husband to a tragic accident and is in unbelievable pain, continuing their plans to move into their new house in Round Hill. Then strange things begin happening, and it appears that someone does not want her there.
I enjoyed the description of and research into events in 1965. I was impressed with the character development of Ellie and Win. However, the events occurring in the 2010 timeline were not fully realized. Although there was a surprise at the end, the plot wasn’t completely developed or resolved. So much could have been added to make this a complete novel, such as more representation of the African American community in the 2010 timeline. Also while I loved the 1965 Ellie for the most part, the 2010 version of Ellie was a real letdown.
I was surprised, as I have loved all of Diane Chamberlain’s books prior to this one.
I received a free copy of this book from St. Martin’s Press. My review is voluntary and my opinions are my own.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Diane Chamberlain is the New York Times, USA Today and (London) Sunday Times best-selling author of 27 novels. The daughter of a school principal who supplied her with a new book almost daily, Diane quickly learned the emotional power of story. Although she wrote many small “books” as a child, she didn’t seriously turn to writing fiction until her early thirties when she was waiting for a delayed doctor’s appointment with nothing more than a pad, a pen, and an idea. She was instantly hooked.
Diane was born and raised in Plainfield, New Jersey and lived for many years in both San Diego and northern Virginia. She received her master’s degree in clinical social work from San Diego State University. Prior to her writing career, she was a hospital social worker in both San Diego and Washington, D.C, and a psychotherapist in private practice in Alexandria, Virginia, working primarily with adolescents.
More than two decades ago, Diane was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, which changed the way she works: She wrote two novels using voice recognition software before new medication allowed her to get back to typing. She feels fortunate that her arthritis is not more severe and that she’s able to enjoy everyday activities as well as keep up with a busy travel schedule.
Diane lives in North Carolina with her significant other, photographer John Pagliuca, and their odd but lovable Shetland Sheepdog, Cole
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