Elizabeth Camden’s stories are always compelling and engaging, capable of sweeping her readers away with incredible, historical feats of science and engineering that are revealed through the lens of (fictional) people living in that time period. Ms. Camden’s newest release from Bethany House, “A Desperate Hope”, is another sequel to a couple of her previous books, (“A Dangerous Legacy” and “A Daring Venture”) but can very easily be read on it’s own, as well.
So, a few of the things I loved about this absorbing story were:
- Can you imagine if your beloved, close-knit community was intentionally being demolished and then flooded by the powers that be, all in the name of progress? This is the story of Duval Springs, and stepping into their shoes is an emotional journey, for sure!
- The faith element of Ms. Camden’s stories, that was missing for a while, is back! Eloise’s journey of faith and growth is beautiful to watch unfold, and Alex’s faith is also an important component of his life.
- A fascinating marvel of engineering is a key element of this story, but I can’t describe it without giving away a major plot point… Believe me when I say it is amazing, though!
- As always, the writing style from this incredibly talented author is impeccable! The entire story comes to life with vivid reality, like a movie in your mind. Her characters seem alive, and the settings make you feel as though you are there.
Two things I did not enjoy about this story, however, are:
- Several affairs between people who were not married (at least not to each other) played a role in this story. That would have been understandable if they were handled with regret and repentance by the characters, but that wasn’t exactly the case. The author did not make a firm stand of Christian morals in this case, but seemed to almost waffle back and forth between making it out to be a good thing or a bad thing – and I did not appreciate that.
- Alex was a major jerk at one point! And, I do not feel that he was sorry enough to Eloise to make up for his huge mess-up.
In the end, the good does outweigh the bad in this story of love, determination, and community. I am also delighted that faith once again plays an important role in the protagonists’ lives, because the prequels to this story were lacking in Christian themes. Overall, “A Desperate Hope” will undoubtedly appeal to fans of Elizabeth Camden’s amazing writing and unique historical details, which are (as always) combined with strong characters and an unforgettable setting.
“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.”