23/07/2011

A Chance in Time (by Ruth Ann Nordin)

I'd never heard of Ruth Ann Nordin, but this book was offered as a free download for my Kindle, listed as Christian fiction. The cover suggested that it was historical, so - not one to turn away a free offer that sounds interesting - I ordered it.

'A Chance in Time" is only a short novel - it would be a novelette if it were printed, probably no more than 100 pages. I felt that there was a lot of potential in it, but, alas, that potential was not realised. It features a young widowed 'mail-order' bride in the USA, at the end of the 19th century. She comes across a seriously dehydrated stranger, rescues him, and nurses him back to health.

So far so good - other than rather too much self-talk and reflection which could have been edited out. There's a bizarre twist in that the stranger is a time-traveller... which could have led to a very interesting story. Unfortunately, it seemed almost irrelevant. That theme was really not explored at all. There could have been conflict, disbelief, even scenes set in the 21st century where he wrestles with a dilemma... but nothing of that nature happens. He might as well have been a regular 19th century guy who had a 'past', or other commitments elsewhere.

I became increasingly frustrated, too, with the lack of editing. Viewpoints switched constantly, sometimes confusingly, and none of the characters were very well developed despite a great many thoughts being described. There were some anachronisms with the general language in conversation, too.

Then, just as the book was winding down to a satisfactory (if predictable) conclusion, I was jolted out of my relaxation by a shockingly explicit love scene, most of which I skipped... and which took about four or five pages to finish. It was was totally out of keeping with the rest of the book, and there was no warning at all that it might happen.

Since I downloaded this book free for my Kindle, I suppose I shouldn't really complain, but I would have been disappointed if I had paid for it.

Not recommended.

Review copyright Sue's Book Reviews, 23rd July 2011

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey! A Chance In Time is a novella that intersects with two works of Ruth Anna Nordin - "Restoring Hope" & "Meant To Be". This was just given to make the reader interested in two stories that travels back and forth in time. I am sure you'll like to read these two novels and other full-length novels of Ruth Anna Nordin found free in www.obooko.com