Tuesday, September 22, 2015

"not by sight" by kate breslin

Anxiously awaiting the final Downton Abbey season's arrival on PBS? (Me, too.) Kate Breslin's Not by Sight can be a pleasant diversion during that wait. Set in England during World War I, it's a great mix of romance and suspense.

In the spring of 1917, all of Britain's attention is on the WWI war front and the thousands of young men serving their country on the front lines. Jack Benningham, dashing heir to the Earl of Stonebrooke, is young and able-bodied but refuses to enlist despite the contempt of his peers.

A wealthy young suffragette, Grace Mabry will do anything to assist her country's cause. Men like Jack infuriate her when she thinks of her own brother fighting in the trenches of France, so she has no reservations about handing him a white feather of cowardice at a posh masquerade ball.

But Grace could not anticipate the danger and betrayal set into motion by her actions, and soon she and Jack are forced to learn the true meaning of courage when the war raging overseas suddenly strikes much closer to home and their fervent beliefs become a matter of life and death.

Not by Sight begins as Grace and her lady's maid Agnes begin handing out white feathers of cowardice at a party. From that moment until the book's end, I found myself completely enthralled with the story. It's a book that fits into many genres: there's mystery and suspense surrounding spies, comedy as Grace tries to work on a farm, wartime drama, and compelling romance between Jack and Grace.

The characters in Not by Sight—including some of the minor ones—are dynamic and realistic; I especially enjoyed the way Jack's stodgy butler, who could easily have been a one-note character, warmed up to Grace throughout the novel. And Jack? He's the kind of lovable rogue that women have long been swooning over. His physical ailment (which really, you'll just have to read about) made him that much more endearing, and it also added just the right amount of romantic tension.

The mystery in the novel is intriguing, and though I figured out the identity of the spy long before the reveal, I still enjoyed seeing everything unfold, and the way it played out was not how I anticipated.

If you like historical fiction, you'll love Not by Sight. And isn't that cover gorgeous? It's definitely one of my favorites so far this year! 5 stars.

Buy the book.

A Florida girl and former bookseller, Kate Breslin migrated to the Pacific Northwest where she lives with her guitarist husband and a persnickety cat. Author of travel articles and award-winning poetry, Kate received Christian Retailing's 2015 Best Award for first time author, and her debut novel, For Such A Time, is a Christy award, RITA award, and Carol award finalist. Kate's second novel, Not By Sight, releases in August 2015. When she's not writing inspirational fiction, Kate enjoys reading or taking long walks in Washington's beautiful woodlands. She also likes traveling to new places, both within the U.S. and abroad, having toured Greece, Rome, and much of Western Europe. New destinations make for fresh story ideas. Please visit her at www.katebreslin.com.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free for review from Bethany House Publishers through its book reviewer program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Also, some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase an item, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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