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All art is unstable. It's meaning is not necessarily that implied by the author, There is no authorative active voice. There are only multiple readings. David Bowie, 1995

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Paradise lost ...

Mist of Midnight: A Novel (The Daughters of Hampshire) by Sandra Byrd 

A mysterious romance with a touch of the Gothic. Rebecca Ravenshaw left England as a child 20 years ago, bound for India with her well to do missionary parents. She is one of a handful who survived the Indian Mutiny. After harrowing months and harrowing dreams, with her family dead, her life destroyed, she returns to England to her family home, to take up her life and claim her Hampshire estate, her inheritance and her place in society. Her arrival elicits consternation and disbelief.  A young woman claiming to be her had convinced the family solicitors that she, the imposter, was Rebecca. The young woman has since died under suspicious and terrible circumstances. For Rebecca, the shock of having her identity stolen, of being left in limbo with an uncertain future, feed into and highlight her tragic past. Having suffered terribly, Rebecca finds herself cast into a society that withholds itself. Here she is, without support or true evidence of who she is with people who disinclined to believe her. Not only that, but a distant cousin has been named heir and has taken over her holdings, Captain Luke Whitfield, a troubled man who has his own set of secrets. Whom can she trust? Rebecca must wait for evidence of who she is to come from India, bide her time and try to solve the mystery of who the young woman is who impersonated her.
Nicely written, the biblical quotes highlight Rebecca's inner fear, discussions and reasonings.  I do like Mrs Ross, her chaperone. Clear headed and empathetic her role is not to be dismissed.

A NetGalley ARC

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