With the death of his brother, Nicholas Somerville became the ninth Marquess of Oakleigh and must return to England to take his place in society. Part of his responsibility will be to find a wife. It never occurs to him he might actually discover a woman he could love--until he meets Alex on his voyage home.
Can Alex and Nicholas find a way to bridge the gap of time and circumstance? Can they overcome their fears to realize that true love transcends time? Or will a dark secret from Alex's past rear up to separate them forever?
Comment: Another book which had been in the pile for a long time and only now did I finally start it. Unfortunately, it didn't end up being as great as I would have liked.
In this story we meet heroine Alexandra Turner, she is going on about her life, trying to get the contact of a woman who she believes could be her sister. Alexandra doesn't have memories of her childhood, but certain clues led her to believe she could have a twin sister and just as she is contacted by someone claiming to be her, she looses contact again. Then, her supposed sister's employer contacts her, tells her a weird story about time travel and Alexandra takes this as a possibility and decides to travel back in time in order to help her, and this way they might finally be reunited. Of course, Alexandra didn't count on meeting an impossible man who makes her doubt if getting back to the "present" is such a great idea...
Yes, it's a fact what I wrote above just confused me as much as any who haven't read this book, and I did. I must confess the biggest disappointment in this book is how badly executed it was - in my opinion. I've also seen some reviews where the expression "well developed plot" comes up but honestly, I just can't understand how this could be.
When I was a teenager I started to notice those Mills and Boon and Harlequin books on supermarkets (back in early 00s we could buy them there) and after reading one or two, the romance world really became broader. I also was influenced by them to write what I like to call short stories of my own, imagining these crazy romance ideas...but you see, the problem were not the ideas, but the fact I could not connect them properly, could not make them feel they were part of the same plot. That is precisely the feeling I got while reading this book, the author has thought of so many things, put them all in this story but the end result feels like a uneven patchwork and not a solid novel.
I became disappointed as soon as the story begins. Alexandra just embarks on unlikely situations without any kind of knowledge of what she's doing, whom she is meeting, there's no explanation for anything, not even her personality is well developed and she just takes for granted she has to act and help her sister - someone she has never met! I wondered, wouldn't one just call the police with such a lack of information? No, Alexandra just goes and following an almost comical string of coincidences, somehow discovers her sister has time traveled.
From this on, it was just.... I kept reading, not in hopes of seeing if it would get better (I figured it wouldn't) but to see where the author would go with all these ideas. Well, one thing is for certain, the author has a lot of imagination and there were a few passages I think were well placed but the overall effect was, sadly, not one I found was polished enough. It looked as if each new idea had to fit that role because it was what one would think right away, not because it had any kind of sequence or continuity.
So, summarizing, let's see... After Alexandra goes through the portal (apparently they exist in specific spots and people could use it but on "our" side the belief is that it could lead to too many people finding them and causing problems, so they are sort of guarded by a private company as much as I gathered) she has to pretend to be a man on a ship which will travel to England and its captain is a man who recently got a title, of course they hit it off but the captain is confused and after he discovers Alex is a woman he is fascinated because she doesn't even care about his scars (of course). In England her sister's family welcomes her, although she starts as the maid but then they all learn Alex and her sister Charlotte were kidnapped as children and take to the "present time"... I could carry on, but you get the idea... there's a lot going on and practically none of it has a well done structure to give it aim or reason.
Anyone used to reading romance novels would recognize several clichés and while I don't mind these, it's certainly better when they prove to be necessary. That is why they are clichés, because they usually work and fit plots. To me, there was no cohesion in how things happened, in why they were playing out that way and it felt as if the author had no logic for several situations, they were just... added to what was going on. I won't even start on the very poor characterization of every character we see.