Monday, March 20, 2017

To the Farthest Shores

Army nurse Jenny Bennet is determined to focus on her work and never risk letting someone break her heart like Ryan Gallagher did.  Six years after the intriguing naval officer told her in a letter not to ever expect him to come back for her, Jenny is shocked to find him once again at the Presidio army base, and with a young half-Japanese daughter in tow.  

Ryan desperately wants to rebuild his life in the US with his daughter after years of a dangerous, clandestine assignment in Japan.  All his hopes depend on training a young playboy to replace him... and on Jenny's forgiveness.  When Ryan decides to include Jenny in his new mission and bring her into his life once more, can she learn to trust him again?  Or will Ryan's attempts to protect Jenny just drive her further away?  

In To the Farthest Shores, Elizabeth Camden takes readers on a truly gut-wrenching adventure.  As usual, Camden masterfully combines intriguing historical detail with expertly-crafted characters to bring an epic story to life.  Camden paints her two main characters so clearly, that the reader perfectly understands why they make the decisions they do.  Just as I lamented in From this Moment, however, I just couldn't accept Ryan Gallagher as a swoon-worthy romantic lead.  Perhaps I identified a bit too much with Jenny's plight, but I just couldn't quite bring myself to forgive Ryan as thoroughly as she did.  I'm not sure he could really have loved Jenny as much as he claimed, while still making the decisions he did throughout most of the novel.  I'm not convinced he suffered quite enough.  In Camden's defense, though, not many fictional characters can get me quite so riled up, or instigate the level of soul-searching that Ryan and Jenny did.  While I'm still not sure if Ryan ultimately understands or deserves Jenny, I can't deny that To the Farthest Shores is an excellent piece of romantic fiction.

 I received a free copy from the publisher.  No review, positive or otherwise, was required—all opinions are my own.

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