Sherry Lewis specializes in time-travel novels. This one is very good. Her heroine, Courtney Moss, lived a miserable childhood. Her mother went through a long chain of live-in boyfriends. Her grandmother resented every time Courtney's mother took Courtney to grandma's to keep Courtney out of the way. In spite of her wounds, Courtney succeeds in life, but bears hard feelings for her mother and grandmother. When her grandmother dies, Courtney returns home for the funeral. Then she and a childhood friend, Ryan Dennehy, go through grandmother's belongings. They find grandmother's gown. Ryan invites Courtney to the Virginia City, Montana, ball if she wears the gown. She accepts. During the ball, she steps outside for some fresh air and finds herself in the past, in Virginia City, Montana, in 1864, during the gold rush.
Lewis does an excellent job characterizing Courtney and showing how Courtney can adapt to this strange new environment. Courtney meets people with familiar sounding family names and finds both adventure and romance. She believes she was sent to the past for a purpose, but doesn't recognize what the purpose might be. As the story progresses, you can see that Courtney and some of her new friends are being healed of very deep wounds. In the end, Courtney has the option of staying where she is or returning to the twentieth century. If such a option were put to you, how would you choose?
This report prepared by Maurice A. Williams
Jove, Apr 2003, 5.99, 280 pp.
When she was seven, Courtney Moss' mother abandoned her, leaving her with her grandmother in Virginia City, Montana. Courtney's grandmother felt the child was an intrusion and though she provided food and shelter, she never displayed one ounce of love towards the sad little girl. Courtney learned that love, if it ever exists, hurts.
Several weeks after her grandmother's funeral, Courtney is back in Virginia City cleaning out the house instead of fine-tuning her sketches for a job interview. In the attic she finds a nineteenth century ball gown. Her friend Ryan persuades her to wear it to the upcoming Victorian Ball. At the gala Courtney becomes locked in a shed. When Heath Sullivan frees her, she finds somehow that she went back in time to 1864.
Heath and Courtney are attracted to one another, but she rejects the notion of love and he believes he does not deserve anyone's love. He believes he caused the death of a friend, a runaway slave. Will time heal all wounds or just add pain as neither person can take that last step towards one another.
Time is not needed to know that time travel romance readers will enjoy Sherry Lewis' latest tale. The scarred lead couple makes for a fine story line as each slowly enters a relationship that they distrust not because so much of the other, but because of the baggage they carry. Though the reason for the travel is weak and the adjustment facile, readers will rate highly ONLY TIME WILL TELL because of the delightful protagonists who deserve a lasting love.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner