My rating: 5 of 5 stars
After being unjustly expelled from the Boston Conservatory of Music, Amaryllis Brigham sees her dreams of founding a music academy disappearing before her very eyes. Now the only way to achieve her goal comes with high stakes for someone set on avoiding men as much as possible: marry within the year to inherit her grandmother’s fortune. Amaryllis reluctantly takes part in her aunt’s society, intent on getting to the west coast on her own… and without a husband.
Despite her own misgivings, she soon finds herself falling in love with the most unlikely of men, Nathan Everstone, whose father not only had a part in her expulsion, but whose ominous presence has haunted her dreams for a decade since her mother’s tragic death. Nathan turns out to be much more than he seems and everything she never knew she wanted. But just as everything Amaryllis has recently hoped for comes to fruition, it all falls apart when she finds that the real culprit who has been managing her life isn't who she thought at all.
I fell in love with this story! It is one of my top reads so far this year! Drawn in by the beautiful flow of the writing from the very first page, I could not put this book down, and wished it was longer when I finished it! (I was also unable to stop smiling at many points while reading this book, as well as after I finished)
First of all, I love a good historical fiction novel. The setting was amazing, very realistic, and well depicted, making me feel as if I'm in the book. There were details and beautifully written similes/metaphors, but they weren't overwhelming - they added more to the book.
Most of all, though, I loved the characters. I felt what they felt - emotions, dreams, problems, etc., - I could imagine everything, they felt so real and relatable! Amaryllis was a fantastic heroine - complex, well thought out, humorous, human - I liked her instantly. Her determination, wit, faith, etc., were a great combination of characteristics, and I really enjoyed the peeks into her past. Nathan was another complex character that was so much more than he at first appeared, and everything that Amaryllis had heard about him! His wit and personality were perfection! I loved the eventual relationship that builds up between them romantic or not. - The bantering and easy relationship between Nathan and Amaryllis? Perfection! (and to avoid any type of spoiler that's all I'm saying, other than - I think they are so perfect for each other, if you hadn't guessed that already)! They a whole other side of the each other, and it's like he can read her mind! Smiles and aww alert!
There were also many other "minor" characters in the book that were pretty awesome! They were well thought out, and I am curious to know more about them and their stories.
Suspense and mystery alert! I wasn't expecting there to be such a sense of mystery and suspense, but there was, and I loved it! I honestly didn't realize that the bad guy was who it was, or that he was as horrible as he ended up being! I just thought he wasn't very nice and had issues!
I also loved the faith focus on love and forgiveness that the main characters went through. It went perfectly with the story and was portrayed in just the right way.
I can not wait to read the rest of the books in this series!
I won a free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are solely my own.
View all my reviews