Yes, it's a romance. But, the dreams that have to be forsaken are not romantic notions. The central character in MaryLu Tyndall's novel is a young southern woman who is a war widow. I mean, that is a dream forsaken in itself. Eliza Crawford met her husband during the Civil War; he was a general in the Northern army. No chance to even get to know him beyond the first bloom of passion, let alone have a life with him and children. How, you ask, did she become so enamored of a Yankee general, being a genteel southern girl? You must read.
Of course, she is ostracized by family and friends because of her marriage to the enemy, even though he is now dead. I guess the indignation of it all did not die with him! She sets out on a ship full of southerners headed for Brazil to start a new life in a new country. They aim to leave the horrors and ravages of the war behind. She hopes to keep her marriage a secret but is certain that her fellow passengers know and will reject her presence on the ship.
The voyage is fraught with weather and attacks from enemy ships. The passengers also have their share of secrets to keep and agendas to push forward.
There is a new romance that slowly takes shape for Eliza and a gentleman on the ship. Colonel Blake Wallace is also a southerner whose family was murdered by the Northern army. His desire to start new is the catalyst for the journey. He organizes the passengers who share his desire to start a new life in Brazil. Thus, the journey begins.
This is an easy read. It is well written and flows smoothly from page to page. It has enough depth and layers in the characters' personalities to keep me reading. This is my first novel to read by MaryLu Tyndall and I enjoyed it. It is Book I of her Escape to Paradise series. I look forward to reading Book II of this series and then Book III which is a new release this month. It is not a blockbuster but you know I have said that not every book needs to be one to be a good read. Good writing by a talented author goes a long way. I am not overly fond of romance novels but when the romance is complicated and the story has multiple characters that play into the central theme, I am good with that. I especially appreciated her inclusion of the characters' faith and the evidence of God at work in the lives of these shipmates.
I give Forsaken Dreams four stars and recommend you give it a read!
Stay tuned. Up next, Dauntless, a new release by Dina Sleiman.
See you soon!