Published by Jove Genres: Fantasy
Wonderment in Death by J.D. Robb
Eve and Peabody arrive at a murder suicide which seems like a cut and dry case, except the brother and sister involved had a great relationship until the death of their parents and, even then, they weren’t hating each other. More, Eve’s friend and sometimes doctor, Louise, knew them and was another voice saying it could never have happened that way. While investigating, Eve finds out that the sister was seeking help in the psychic world, something Eve does not believe in, and starts to track the deceased’s footsteps and soon finds that the psychic rabbit hole can be a deadly one. With the help of Roarke, Peabody, Louise, and others, Eve proves that even a mad murderer can be pulled out of a magic hat.
I really loved watching as Eve, Peabody, Roarke, and the others always get their man and/or woman once they catch a case, no matter how strange and twisty it can get. In this case, it really was something that you would expect to find in Alice’s rabbit hole, and it was a pure Eve way of getting her rabbit out of it. I have always loved the mystic novellas that J.D. Robb does with Eve and the gang, because they are so opposite Eve’s down to earth outlook on life. If you are a lover of the In Death series, then you will need to read this latest adventure.
Alice and the Earl in Wonderland by Mary Blayney
With the death of his uncle, the newest Earl of Weston, Bennet West, known to his friends as “Wes”, finds himself in charge of an estate deep in debt and lots of people depending on him. Wes is also trying to recover from another blow, this time to his heart. His love, Alice Kemp, refused his offer of marriage because of his status in society and hers. While on his way to his country home to hopefully figure out a way to put things back on track, Wes finds himself and his love Alice suddenly in the twentieth century. It’s hard enough for them to believe and yet the small amount of time they are there will show both of them the way to have it all when they get back home, if they have the strength and belief in each other to grab it.
I wondered as I read a time travel book just how I would react if found in a similar situation. In this case, I hope that I would also find a way to learn from what I was seeing and take it back with me. I really enjoyed seeing that Wes and Alice did just that. I could see right away that Alice really did love Wes and only said no because she wanted to keep him from suffering from society’s scorn as she had, and Wes was obviously in love with Alice and didn’t give a fig about who thought what. It was a happy thing to see how they were able to come together and grab the future that was waiting for them. I also found that there were several ways in which Alice and Wes’ story carried on the theme of this book.
iLove by Elaine Fox
Macy loved her boyfriend Jeremy and yet walked away from him, because he spent too much time on his phone and ignoring her. That afternoon began months of both of them learning that a relationship takes work on both sides and that the give and take must also be on both sides. For Jeremy, he is sucked into an alternate universe that is total technology and unable to reach out to live people except in certain ways, and for Macy it was learning that sometimes, even when you are with the one you love, you will need to accept that you are not the center of their attention. Only after they learned these lessons and how to overcome them, would Macy and Jeremy find a way to grab a second chance at happiness.
This was an interesting use of cell phones and a love story twisted together. As I followed the twists and turns of both Macy and Jeremy rediscovering their love, I saw that Jeremy learned the truth much sooner than Macy, but eventually she also saw that she had been lacking and gave up instead of discussing with Jeremy why she was feeling hurt. Yet, because of their situations, or I should say Jeremy’s situation, it took a lot for them to find one another again. I will say that it was an unusual love story, but not a bad one and, to me, it had a loose connection to the theme of the overall book.
A True Heart by Mary Kay McComas
Elise was on a Halloween costume hunt with her sister-in-law and seemed to have found that mystical rabbit hole in the store. During this time, which appeared to be just minutes to her sister-in-law and was longer in reality, Elise meets someone and is led through a strange and wondrous journey through her past life up to her present. Unfortunately for Elise, it is not a good reflection of her and yet, it shows her that things are not always as they seem. Elise sees her life and, by the end of this journey, she knows where she needs to change things and where she needs to accept what is being offered to her: especially the love that has been given to her by Max, her boyfriend who has proclaimed his love for her. By the time Elise leaves the store, she has not only discovered a love she almost threw away, but she just knows that exact costumes for everyone that shows their love for each other.
Talk about a trip down the rabbit hole. This journey with Elise was strange at very strange at times. I still haven’t found a proper name to the character that traveled with Elise on her journey, although I do know exactly who he was meant to be, and he did an excellent job of it. I felt sorry for Elise in several places as the travel down memory lane went on, and I was very happy when she finally discovered just what she had with Max. I will also say that this was the hardest story for me to follow, but that didn’t detract from the story itself. I can definitely say that it will be a new Elise from the minute she left that costume store.
Fallen by R. C. Ryan
Beth Campbell lost her parents at a very young age and eventually ended up living with her aunt who only accepted the perfect and was hard on those who didn’t live up to that, including Beth. Now an adult and working as a lawyer in the same firm that her father started, Beth discovers that her aunt has merged with a larger firm and Beth is going to be kept on, but only if she can get a Scottish laird, Colin Gordan, to sell his ancestral home. Off to Scotland Beth goes, however before she can get to the lodge that Colin is running, Beth finds herself back in eighteenth century Scotland, and she meets the current laird of the land. Beth soon sees the land as this laird, also Colin, does and also discovers a plot to kill Colin and destroy all he holds dear. Beth and Colin fall into a deep love, which makes it even harder when Beth travels back to current time. However, once again, all is not as it seems and Beth finds that maybe her lost love isn’t as lost as she first thought. After all, many mysterious things can happen in the mists of the Scottish highlands and a true love is said to conquer all.
I will say first off that after the J.D. Robb story, this was my second favorite in the entire book. Seeing Beth give into what she knows is right instead of what is expected of her while falling in love had me wanting to know what would happen next. I also enjoyed seeing the legend brought to life through Beth’s eyes while Colin fought to keep his land and his people safe. I had no idea how Beth and Colin’s love would live, especially after what had happened just before Beth came back to current time. The ending was perfect for Beth and Colin’s story; I just wish I could have seen what her aunt’s expression was when the truth came out. Again, there were several aspects of the theme within the story.
Down the Rabbit Hole held stories from the future, the past, the present, and time traveling back and forth, which I found to be a good mixture. While I did enjoy some of the stories more than others, and I also found that some kept with the Wonderland theme better than others, I enjoyed this book from beginning to the end. With the complex twists that the authors placed into each story to give it the Wonderland “curiouser and curiouser” feel. The mixture of authors’ styles was a good as the variety of stories themselves and, for the most part, they flowed from one to the other. Overall, I would say this book is a great way to spend a few hours, especially if you are a lover of Alice in Wonderland and the individual authors themselves, then Down the Rabbit Hole is a book you will want in your library.