TITLE: The Bride of Time (Time Travel / July 29, 2008)
AUTHOR: Dawn Thompson
13 ISBN: 9780505527288
10 ISBN: 0505527286
The story begins in London, the year 1903. Tessa LaPrelle is a scullery maid. When framed for stealing, Tessa flees with pursuit hot on her heels. Somehow, via Lay Lines, she travels almost one hundred years into the past. Tessa finds her morning has suddenly become dusk. Instead of London, she is in Cornwall. It is now 1811.
Tessa is mistaken for someone applying for a governess position at Longhollow Abbey on Bodmin Moor. With nowhere to go and only the clothes on her back, Tessa accepts the governess job. Her charge is named Montclair "Monty" Albert Montague the third. He is the nine-years-old ward of Giles Longworth. (Monty had been the stepson of Giles's sister until she died the year prior, leaving Monty in the care of Giles.) The tension between the child and the surrogate uncle is palpable and Tessa finds herself in the middle of it all. She realizes from the start that Monty is not quite normal, though she is unsure as to why. Monty often seems dangerous and sends chills down her spine. As for Giles, he is an artist with a fondness for brandy. He just happens to be the artist of a painting Tessa had enjoyed viewing in a London gallery during her own time period. In fact, Giles is currently working on the painting Tessa enjoyed the most, The Bride of Time.
Giles is not sure where Tessa came from since he never bothers to ask for references. She is a lady of mystery, an enigma. She came to him out of the night like an answer to a prayer. Though Tessa takes the job of governess, Giles hopes to persuade her to pose for him. Giles needs her to care for Monty, and for him to use her likeness in his current painting, but at the same time Giles must protect her. Monty is one of the lycanthrope, werewolf, and last month the child bit his hand. Giles knows that there is a very good chance that, come the full moon, he will change. The bite of a werewolf is contagious.
Tessa has never been superstitious, but after traveling through time (more than once) she must admit that some supernatural things cannot be explained away; they just ARE. Tessa and Giles find love in the arms of each other; however, Tessa is pursued for a crime she did not commit in her time and Giles is accused of multiple deaths during his. Only together can they hope to find eventual happiness, but how and where seem to have impossible answers.
***** Author Dawn Thompson left our own time period February 8, 2008, but she has left behind a few wonderful stories for her fans. This book, The Bride of Time, is the first published story since the author's death. In my opinion, this is also Dawn Thompson's best work to date!
The idea of beginning a story in the past, then having one of the main characters travel through time deeper into the past, is not new; however, few are as well written as this. There are similarities between the two chosen time periods and the author uses these to actually enhance the tale, making it all believable. As for the secondary characters, I found myself caring for a faithful butler and admiring an elder Gypsy woman. The story pulled in, not only my interest from the first, but my emotions as well. I almost felt as though I stood beside Tessa during her ordeals, peering through the foggy mists for the unknown dangers therein. Fans of reading time travels, historicals, supernaturals, and gothics will adore this book. A thrilling run through some of England's dangerous times, with love as their only escape! I cannot recommend this story highly enough. *****
Reviewed by Detra Fitch