The River of No Return – Bee Ridgway
Publisher: Michael Joseph (Penguin)
Release Date: 23 May 2013
Rating: 4.5 /5
Source: Advance copy from the publisher. Many thanks!
Synopsis: “You are now a member of the Guild. There is no return.” Two hundred years after he was about to die on a Napoleonic battlefield, Nick Falcott, soldier and aristocrat, wakes up in a hospital bed in modern London. The Guild, an entity that controls time travel, showers him with life’s advantages. But Nick yearns for home and for one brown-eyed girl, lost now down the centuries. Then the Guild asks him to break its own rule. It needs Nick to go back to 1815 to fight the Guild’s enemies and to find something called the Talisman.
In 1815, Julia Percy mourns the death of her beloved grandfather, an earl who could play with time. On his deathbed he whispers in her ear: “Pretend!” Pretend what? When Nick returns home as if from the dead, older than he should be and battle scarred, Julia begins to suspect that her very life depends upon the secrets Grandfather never told her. Soon enough Julia and Nick are caught up in an adventure that stretches up and down the river of time. As their knowledge of the Guild and their feelings for each other grow, the fate of the future itself is hanging in the balance.
When someone got in touch with me and asked if I’d be happy to review Bee Ridgways The River of No Return, I nearly said no. I had loads on my to-read list (both for me and for reviews) and work had been pretty full on. I was hesitant to add to my list of things I needed to accomplish… but I liked the look of the cover and the story sounded interesting… plus it had been billed as the next Time Traveler’s Wife which I adored so I said yes.
I’m so glad I did.
Bee Ridgway manages to craft a world that mixes the modern with the archaic and the real world with the magical. Nick, who has jumped from the 1800s to modern day is summoned by the mysterious Guild to help them with a problem they’re having… in the future, time is running backwards and they want to know why. And then there’s Nick’s love interest from the past, Julia, who is somehow mixed in with the whole thing. There are a few interesting twists and turns along the way and at the end I found myself desperately wanting more. I sincerely hope Ridgway is planning a sequel because my GOODNESS do I have questions galore!
The River of No Return is one of those rare books that I actually found myself thinking about even after I put the book down. A few days before finishing it, I found myself walking down a busy London street, totally lost in philosophical thought about what happens after we die, and whether or not such a thing as our souls “jumping through time” would be possible. It would mean we lived forever in a fashion.
I actually miss reading this book now that it’s over.
The River of No Return is a gorgeous book but a hefty one. Despite its size, the pages will fly by and you’ll wonder where time went. Aha! See what I did there?