C.F. Dunn is the author of Mortal Fire, the first book in "The Secret of the Journal" series. She also happens to live in the U.K. I may have to go there and wait patiently on her front doorstep while she writes book two. I'd wait inside the house but I'm afraid I'd disrupt her thinking process and "my" book would be totally messed up.
Emma D'Eresby is a young history professor who leaves the confines of Cambridge to teach at an esteemed university in Maine. It's not money or esteem that draws her there. It is the possibility of touching, reading, researching the full original text of a seventeenth-century Englishman's journal of which her grandfather had willed her a portion. When she gets to Maine her quiet research is thwarted by odd match-making, the jailing of a student, attacks on young women and through it all the continual tug of her heart to a beautiful, yet mysterious, man.
This romantic thriller is just that. Often times more thriller than romance. I found myself trying to guess the ending, wanting to look ahead, but afraid that I'd ruin the fun.
To be perfectly honest, the first two chapters did little for me. I found myself not wanting to read the book. The style is quite poetic in nature with descriptions so detailed that it did not allow your mind to wander at all. However, somewhere in the third chapter things just clicked. It's like Dunn found her writing groove and drew me in so deep I didn't think I was ever going to dig myself out. The characters seemed real, I suddenly found myself wanting to learn more about history (entirely odd), and just when I thought I had it all figured out...that was it. The end. Wait for book two. Ugh!!! That's an entirely good "Ugh" by the way.
Even those who do not normally enjoy Christian literature will enjoy this. Yes, Emma is a Christian but the book is not necessarily about challenging your faith. It is about entertainment, wonder, and giving you goosebumps as you turn each page. Yes, there were times I thought I'd jump out of my knickers (as the Brit's would say).
As mentioned earlier, I'm not sure that I can wait to read the second book. C.F. Dunn, please put a pot of tea on for me. I might get cold waiting on your doorstep.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Kregel Publications. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.