After a recent divorce, Niki retreats to a cottage in Nova Scotia that she inherited from her grandmother Eliza and great aunt Johanna. With her teenage daughter Melissa in tow, Niki struggles with decisions of what to do next and whether or not an entire career change is in order. At the cottage, she discovers her grandmother’s diary and is whisked back into the past, into Eliza and Johanna’s world during the Great August Gales of Nova Scotia, casting a light on her own life she never saw coming.
This is a long over due review. To be honest, I had almost forgotten that I had picked it up FOR review. (Terribly sorry May!)
Based in an almost modern day, Heart of the Hurricane saves a few pages of necessary work to set up the story. There is still quite a bit of subtle world building that occurs, especially as the time line alternates between now, and the past, but May does a nice job keeping a light hand on this paint brush. The threads are carefully woven together, as the two parallel story lines run concurrently, with each giving very subtle hints about what’s coming in the alternate.
The characters have a believablility that makes the story absolutely pop. Each one has their own personal quirks, and yet, those quirks work together to highlight the driving concepts in each scene, and give life to everything around them – including each other. They have a depth and scope even some people I’v met in real life lack, yet they do not come across as arrogant, snobbish, or callow unless that is the deliberate mold of the person. (And, yes, the one that springs to mind who fits one, or more, of these descriptions IS definitely molded that way!)
The pacing has a natural feel to it. Never rushed, but it doesn’t drag either. There’s a relaxing, natural ebb and flow to the tale as you wend your way through the words. The few points of deliberately out of place tension come along just in time to highlight important points. Either with smiles or a heart-wrenching gasp as you realize something happened you didn’t expect. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not the same type of edge-of-your seat excitement you’d get with a thriller, but more of an unexpected twist to the plot. The overall story definitely has a gentle meandering feel, and doesn’t try to buck your senses around.
Overall, though I’m not a big romance fan, this one was a pleasant read, and I’d definitely recommend for those who DO enjoy romance books. It’s a clean read – no language that I can remember, and the scenes that I prefer not to witness were left behind closed doors. A good one for all ages. Definitely a solid 5 out of 5 stars from me.
If you enjoyed the review for Heart of the Hurricane and want to read more, you can pick up a copy on Amazon. If you enjoyed the review, and wish me to review your work, please stop by my Offered Services page, and send me a submission. Almost all genres accepted, though science fiction and fantasy will get preference, and outright erotica or steamy romance will be politely declined.