Against the tide by Elizabeth Camden.
Love and Lives are Threatened in Camden's Latest Offering
As a child, Lydia Pallas became all too familiar with uncertainty when it came to the future. Now, she's finally carved out a perfect life for herself--a life of stability and order with no changes, surprises, or chaos of any kind. She adores her apartment overlooking the bustling Boston Harbor, and her skill with languages has landed her a secure position as a translator for the U.S. Navy.
However, it is her talent for translation that brings her into contact with Alexander Banebridge, or "Bane," a man who equally attracts and aggravates her. When Bane hires Lydia to translate a seemingly innocuous collection of European documents, she hesitantly agrees, only to discover she is in over her head.
Just as Bane's charm begins to win her over, Lydia learns he is driven by a secret campaign against some of the most dangerous criminals on the East Coast, compelled by his faith and his past. Bane forbids any involvement on Lydia's part, but when the criminals gain the upper hand, it is Lydia on whom he must depend.
Thoughts:I had read Elizabeth Camden's previous two books, The Lady of Bolton Hill and The Rose of Winslow Street, and I liked them both. This book came out a while back and it took my library a good bit to finally get a copy. I was excited to read it and see how it turned out and compared to the previous two books. Lydia Pallas is an orphan whose family died tragically at sea. She grew up in and orphanage and has fought off the battle waged against her by poverty. She now works at this Navy place translating things. She's fluent in four languages due to traveling all over when she was young. Her father was Greek and her mother a Turk. She's been doing pretty well for herself. Until Alexander Banebridge struts into her life. Bane, as he is called, needs Lydia to translate some papers for him. They're boring papers talking about taxes and odd things of no use. She's getting paid though, nearly enough that she might be able to keep her apartment! So she keeps translating for Bane even if she doesn't trust him. Bane meanwhile is close to a big breakthrough in his war against illegal opium smuggling (as well as against opium in general)...he just needs a little more proof and work put in and he'll have whoever is letting opium slip through. While they work together Lydia struggles to understand why Bane is bringing useless papers to be translated. And Bane struggles with his growing feelings toward Lydia. Meanwhile Bane's old enemy the Professor is plotting ways to stop Bane, if only he could find someone near and dear to him...
Pros:I was super excited with the return of Bane, he had been a great character in The Lady of Bolton Hill and I...well I was excited :P And I was really happy with how this story turned out. Compared to the rest it is either my favorite or tied for favorite with TLOBH. The plot and story-line was really interesting. Some of the things I thought would happen actually didn't and some things did happen. In any case, I was surprised and it's a pretty detailed plot. There are a lot of ties and similarities between Bane and Lydia and they had a great chemistry. Both were stubborn and feisty although you don't always see it in Lydia, especially at first. I really liked Lydia although I didn't exactly relate to her, I still really liked her. Bane was funny and just a great guy :) The love story was really sweet and it was probably the thing I was most wary of. There were a couple small issues (see below) but otherwise I thought it was written very genuinely and I thought it was just about the sweetest thing ever :) Especially the ending :D Which was really good and I never would have guessed, at the beginning of the book, how it would turn out. Maybe not even midway. The ending area is a bit of a surprise in several ways. But of course there is a happily ever after :)
Cons:Some of the romance was a little cliche or eye roll worthy. But it wasn't that bad really. There was maybe only one scene or two that I had issues with. It's the step between "I like you" and "I love you" that always trips me up with the writing. It has to be done right for me to like it. I wish that the author had mentioned God a little more and perhaps a little sooner, but it kinda went with the plot so I technically shouldn't complain. Haha. Otherwise I had no problems as I really enjoyed all the rest of it.
Content wise there is some kidnapping, death, a fire or two, and of course all the opium and talking about people being addicted to it and smuggling it. Otherwise there was just a small bit of kissing.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book and it is probably my favorite from this author! It's a really sweet story and I would recommend to 13+ girls who enjoy clean, Christian romance and historical fiction.
Rating: 4 stars