Reviewer Michelle Kaye Malsbury:
Michelle was born in Champaign, IL. Currently, she resides in Asheville, NC
and is in her second year of doctoral studies at Nova Southeastern
University in Ft. Lauderdale with specialization/concentration in
conflict resolution and peace studies. She has over six hundred
articles published on the web and one book published thus far with
many more in the wings. Hobbies include; reading, writing, music, and
playing with her Australian Cattle Dog, Abu.
Author: Lucretia Bingham, Author
Publisher: Keith Publications,
Lucretia Bingham, author of She, attended Sarah Lawrence College. (2017, back cover) Lucretia freelanced and wrote articles for many noteworthy magazines and newspapers. This is her first book. She lives on Long Island with her husband.
There are a few main characters in this fun novel. Stuart is the main male for most of the novel, but a few other interesting men join him as the story unfolds. They are Hassan and Mohammed. The main ladies are Ophelia, Sophia, Caroline, Abby, and Maggie.
Stuart is a hotel developer who has travelled the globe developing incredible hotels in a variety of international locales for very discerning clients. Ophelia is from the Tiffany lineage and set financially herself. Both Ophelia and Stuart are single these days. Ophelia divorced and Stuart a widower.
As this story opens Ophelia is embarking on leaving her relationship with Stuart, but get second thoughts and rushes back to find that he and his eldest daughter, Sophia are snorkeling and Sophia is stuck in a coral reef. Stuart is frantic and swims back to get help. Ophelia rushes out to the reef and works feverishly to free Sophia’s stuck foot. She finally does and brings them safely back to shore. Sophia has not felt loved and Ophelia works hard to try to ensure that all of Stuart’s young ladies find love and support in her.
Stuart has previously had a series of relationships with high maintenance women who have left him unfulfilled and his daughters thinking he is shallow and self serving. Ophelia is the first woman that Stuart finds he can truly be himself with. She has two grown daughters from her prior marriage who support her in her relationship with Stuart.
Stuart’s wife, Caroline, was of the trophy sort who manipulated him to get her way. They had four girls and one evening she died in a tragic home fire. They have mixed emotions about this awful scenario since she was not a good mother or wife. The emotional scars run deep in Stuart and he and Ophelia make a pact to spend their first year sharing their feelings and thoughts about the past and then moving on to their future together.
Stuart has an opportunity to develop a major hotel in the obscure mountains of Morocco. He decides to take all of his family and Ophelia along on this adventure. He has never done this before. They fly in a private plane of one of his business associates, Hassan. Hassan has provided them with luxury accommodations when they arrive in Morocco. They have servants and drivers and everything anyone could want. However, Hassan has a deeper darker plan for the lovely fragile daughter Caroline.
One day when Sophia, Ophelia, and Caroline are out hiking to the next village Caroline goes missing. They find themselves in a maze unable to determine what has happened to Caroline and who they can trust to help them find her. They meet a young man who offers his assistance. His name is Mohammed. Mohammed wants Ophelia’s iphone as a reward for his help and she promises him that if they can find Caroline she will give it to him.
Mohammed, Ophelia, and Sophia take arduous journeys across the mountains and dessert to search for the whereabouts of Caroline. They learn they may be being followed by people who want to prevent them from finding Caroline. So they proceed cautiously, but it seems as far as they go they may never find her. Their emotions are raw and as they bolster the courage to continue Ophelia and Sophia forge a very loving and emotionally charged bond. Will they locate Caroline? If so, at what cost?
Stuart is beside himself with worry over his missing daughters and lover. His emotions range from thinking that perhaps Ophelia has left him again to something sinister has happened and he must unravel a mystery to begin his own search for his family. Who can he trust? Will he find them before tragedy befalls them too?
I loved this book and had a very difficult time putting it down. There were so many twists and turns and the mystery is not totally resolved until near the end. Read it. I know you will enjoy it as much as I did.