Monday, August 24, 2015

Sandra Byrd's Mist of Midnight ~ Reviewed

Mist of Midnight: A Novel
by Sandra Byrd
Series: The Daughters of Hampshire
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Howard Books (March 10, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1476717869


In the first of a brand-new series set in Victorian England, a young woman returns home from India after the death of her family to discover her identity and inheritance are challenged by the man who holds her future in his hands.

Rebecca Ravenshaw, daughter of missionaries, spent most of her life in India. Following the death of her family in the Indian Mutiny, Rebecca returns to claim her family estate in Hampshire, England. Upon her return, people are surprised to see her...and highly suspicious. Less than a year earlier, an imposter had arrived with an Indian servant and assumed not only Rebecca's name, but her home and incomes. 

That pretender died within months of her arrival; the servant fled to London as the young woman was hastily buried at midnight. The locals believe that perhaps she, Rebecca, is the real imposter. Her home and her father's investments reverted to a distant relative, the darkly charming Captain Luke Whitfield, who quickly took over. Against her best intentions, Rebecca begins to fall in love with Luke, but she is forced to question his motives—does he love her or does he just want Headbourne House? If Luke is simply after the property, as everyone suspects, will she suffer a similar fate as the first “Rebecca”? 

A captivating Gothic love story set against a backdrop of intrigue and danger, Mist of Midnight will leave you breathless.


Captivating from paragraph one, Mist of Midnight had me seeing a couple midnights I had no intention of staying up for. 

Written in a shrouded gothic tone, Mist of Midnight starts with the return of Rebecca Ravenshaw to her family estate. Now, this is a return that is already fragile as Rebecca is coming home from India where the rest of her family perished. She is a virtual stranger to England. When she arrives at her estate she discovers it occupied and that her arrival is met with suspicion. It seems that Rebecca Ravenshaw had already claimed the property and died a tragic not-to-be-talked about death. As days go on, Rebecca uncovers more puzzles and bizarre behaviors, even from the only one she begins to trust, Luke Whitfield, the man in line to inherit should Rebecca prove to be an imposter or show up dead.

Loved this. So dark and broody and outright creepy in places. My historical itch was fully scratched with the social shunning of Rebecca and the calculating folks who watched and waited for her to fail at her endeavor. The twists and turns in this tale offer up a great story in the process. If you love historicals and tense, rich writing with deep characterization you have to give this one a deeper look.

Reviewed by: Kelly Klepfer

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