Saturday, April 25, 2015

Book Review: With Every Breath

I have had the privilege of reading every one of Elizabeth Camden's books to date, and have enjoyed them all.  But I think With Every Breath may be my new favorite!

Synopsis: Widow Kate Livingston is content with her quiet life and her job at the census bureau in Washington, DC.  And then, her life is turned upside down by Trevor McDonough, or "Dr. Kendall," as he is now known.  A rival from school days, Trevor was always moody and disagreeable, but now he's requested for Kate to help him in his tuberculosis research at Washington Memorial Hospital.  Some of Trevor's theories for a possible cure seem far-fetched, but as Kate works with him, she finds herself becoming passionate about finding a cure too, and drawn to Trevor himself in ways she didn't expect.  But when Kate discovers Trevor's deepest secret, and someone in the background is working hard to discredit him, it seems that both success in their work, and their happiness together, may be impossible.

My thoughts:  One thing I love about Camden's books is her strong female characters.  Kate Livingston was no exception.  Trevor was an interesting and complex character too, and I enjoyed seeing how their story played out.  Another thing that I really appreciate about Camden is her ability to weave some very interesting (and sometimes little-known) history into her books.  This novel gave me not only a picture of Washington, DC, in the late 1800s, but also a lot of information about tuberculosis itself, and the research that went into searching for a cure.  Camden does a fantastic job with researching her novels (unlike quite a few historical fiction authors I've read), and through her books I've learned about things like the opium trade, watch making, the Great Chicago Fire, etc. I am always interested to see what she'll come up with in her next book!  With Every Breath was a great read, and I was very satisfied with the ending.

One minor quibble: I have to say that every Elizabeth Camden novel has a beautiful cover.  (My absolute favorite is Against the Tide, but I like them all.)  But I felt like the artist "missed" on the cover's depiction of Kate.  The woman on the cover is lovely, but not at all as I pictured Kate in the book.  Like I said, just a little minor thing, and the cover is still nice. :)

Thanks to Bethany House for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book!  I was not required to write a positive review, and all opinions expressed are my own.

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