Today at Great New Books, we have the pleasure of hosting guest contributor Tiffany Hawk, author of LOVE ME ANYWAY.
Thanks to Tiffany, we have one personalized and autographed copy to give away to one lucky commenter at the end of this post (details below). Thank you, Tiffany, for joining us at Great New Books and sharing one of your favorite reads with us today!
Author Tiffany Hawk, on one of her recent favorite books:
The River of No Return by Bee Ridgway
If I’d known what The River of No Return was about, I probably never would have read it. And damn, I’d have been missing out.
I bought the book purely on the recommendation of a friend, without even reading the synopsis. (Yes, this friend’s taste is that impeccable.) When I finally cracked it open and discovered it was about time travel, paranormal romance, and evil villains, I groaned.
I’m far too serious for my own good and prefer realism, books that offer a clear-eyed look at our world and what it means to be in it. So I was surprised and delighted to find myself staying up into the wee hours devouring the twist and turns of this undeniable page-turner. But, I was even more surprised to find far more than entertainment value. Ridgway explores deep, thought-provoking themes from feminism to elitism to slavery and corporate greed.
The story alternates between two main protagonists, Nick Falcott and Julia Percy, both aristocrats from the early 19th century. After a brush with death while fighting the Napoleonic Wars, Nick jumped forward to the year 2013, where he is protected (and manipulated) by The Guild, an association of fellow time travelers. When Nick and Julia each discover they can manipulate time, they find themselves caught up in an impossible romance as well as a vast conspiracy that spans thousands of years into the past and well into the future.
While the politics, fashion and other cultural idiosyncrasies of various ages are tantalizing (especially for this history major), Ridgway takes us well past superficial observation. These characters don’t simply jump around in time watching historical events unfold around them. They act. They feel. They become changed by the eras and cultures in which they find themselves. Nick, for example, upon returning to the 19th-Century begins to lose the populist outlook he developed in 2013, temporarily sliding back into a familiar aura of entitlement and misogyny.
The River of No Return makes you think about yourself and to what extent you are a product of your time. Who would you be in another era or culture? How would you see the world? How would you behave if you knew the future, and thus the outcomes of every event and argument in which you’re participating?
And right now, as the river of time moves forward, changing life as we know it, how will you react? Will you push full-steam for sweeping change? Fight to hold onto the status quo? Or will you long for an easier time?
My verdict: Delectable. Thought-provoking. Meaningful.
To enter the drawing to win the autographed and personalized copy of Tiffany Hawk’s novel, LOVE ME ANYWAY, leave a comment (any comment) below, from Wednesday, October 9 until Friday, October 11 at midnight Eastern time.
Great New Books will email the winner individually and announce it in the comments on Saturday, October 12. (Entries for the Continental US only, please.) As always, thanks for helping us to spread the word and thank you for joining us!