Through the Shadows takes the shadows and darkness lurking within the lives of its central characters, weaving them into the darkness of the sex slave trade in Sans Francisco and the brightness of courageous mission endeavours, to create a story of secrets and tensions, life and struggles. But it is also a story of grace. Good read!
Elizabeth King, an attractive, petite blonde with a definite mind of her own, struggles to move beyond the shadows of the past and her own painful secret.
A teaching position at the Presbyterian Mission for women and girls rescued from the sex-slave industry offers a salve for her conscience and the promise of a new beginning.
Elizabeth loves the work and grows fond of the girls at the mission but there is danger in the shadows of Chinatown. After forays into Chinatown for supplies, information and a daring rescue of an abducted girl Donaldina Cameron, the mission director, warns the girls, “The enemy crouches like a roaring lion. Keep prayers on your lips.”
Despite initial misunderstandings on both sides, Elizabeth finds herself increasingly drawn to the young attorney, Charles McKinley, who has been given the responsibility of managing her family’s estate. Elizabeth states with exasperation, “You might look like a handsome cowboy but you’ve the twisted heart of an attorney.”
But Charles has his own shadows of the past and feels a growing disquiet concerning the King family’s collapsed investments. Despite growing tension at the law firm office he helps and provides legal representation for the mission leading to even more friction.
‘How many times would he be forced to choose between his heart and his career?’
Through the Shadows is a fictional piece but set in a historical period with well-known personalities of the time mentioned or included in the story. Extra historical details can be found following the story and also group discussion questions, which is helpful for personal reflection or discussion within a reading group.
I would like to thank Abingdon Press and Litfuse for providing me with the opportunity to read, and review, this book. (Copy provided for personal review through NetGalley.)
THROUGH THE SHADOWS
by Karen Barnett
Publisher: Abingdon Press
About the book:
Through the Shadows (Abingdon, May 2016)
As San Francisco rises from the ashes, an age-old battle looms between corruption and the promise of new beginnings.
The devastating earthquake is just two years past, but the city of San Francisco is still trying to recover. Destruction of this magnitude is not so easy to overcome---and neither are the past regrets shadowing Elizabeth King's hopeful future.
Hoping to right her wrongs, Elizabeth dedicates herself to helping girls rescued from slavery in Chinatown brothels, even if it means putting her own life at risk to sneak through the gloomy alleys and rooftops where dangers lurk.
Putting her life on the line for a worthy cause is admirable. But opening her heart is even more terrifying. So when Elizabeth meets attorney, Charles McKinley---a man who dreams of reforming San Francisco's crooked politics---Elizabeth begins to doubt: Can she maintain her pretense and hide her past? Or will her secret jeopardize both their futures?
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