Library Journal Review
Trained at her mother's knee in herbal medicinal arts, freedwoman Marlie Lynch is taken in by her white father's family at Lynchwood. She spends her time crafting new remedies and secretly helping the Union cause, which includes hiding escaped prisoner Ewan McCall in her lab. Her uneasy peace is shattered when a vicious in-law invites the arrogant Commander Cahill and his ruthless Confederate Home Guard to move into the house. Before long, Marlie and Ewan are fleeing for their lives on the Underground Railroad, with peril close behind. A quietly courageous healer and a Union officer battle hatred, intolerance, and cruelty in a compelling story of the Civil War told from an often neglected point of view. VERDICT Exceptional historical detail and abundant literary and philosophical references guarantee this well-written story will appeal to both romance and historical fiction fans. Cole (An Extraordinary Union) lives in New York City. [See "Editors' Fall Picks," LJ 9/1/17, p. 34.] © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Booklist Review
*Starred Review* Marlie Lynch is more privileged than most, but her free papers and her family's protection offer little comfort when Confederate soldiers arrive and threaten her already-limited liberty. But in the quiet of her rooms, she is free to experiment and tinker with her herbs and medicinal concoctions, which help heal the wounds of soldiers, neighbors, and slaves alike. She is well respected in her small community for her work and for her name, and that is why no one suspects that she may be harboring a fugitive in the attic. Ewan McCall is used to silence and solitude. As a Union officer who has spent several years in Confederate prisons, he has acclimated to being alone with a book or just his thoughts. Yet while hidden in Marlie's secret room, all his thoughts are fixated on the beautiful and brilliant woman on the other side of the door. The intimacy of their seclusion is tantalizing, and the sexual tension sizzles as they dare to close that social divide. Thoughtfully portrayed characters with deep minds and passionate hearts make this second novel in Cole's Loyal League series, following An Extraordinary Union (2017), sparkle. Highly recommended for lovers of historical romance.--Giovanni, Kristina Copyright 2017 Booklist