Bee Ridgeway has crafted a story of politics, historical dimensions, trust & mistrust and love but all the while captured my interest with time travel right in the core of THE RIVER OF NO RETURN. An 18th century Lord is fighting for his country and gets struck down on the battlefield. But this is not the end of his story but just the beginning. He wakes up two hundred years later in modern times which is quite a shock.
Not only does he not know anyone or understand this modern world, he is no longer Lord Nicholas Davenant but Nick. He is allowed to keep one thing from his past and that is his family crest ring otherwise he has to learn to fit in to present day society and not stick out. He has been told there is no way to travel back in time and that he must accept this gift of life in the present time.
Nick learns he was now a member of The Guild. Certain individuals from throughout time somehow saved and living everyday lives provided a large sum up by The Guild to set themselves up in the present.
Years later Nick receives a summons from Alderwoman Alice Gacoki who heads up The Guild which cannot be refused. He is to travel back in time with Alice’s husband Ackady as a guide on a mission. Yet Nick was told from the start he could never return to his time so why now? His life back in the eighteen hundreds is the perfect cover for this mission.
Nick’s return is somewhat off-putting for all of those that have loved and mourned his death. His sister Claire had a new plan for his lands and his neighbor the lovely Julia Percy who has just suffered some recent tragic events are both thrown off guard. But soon everything has returns to normal given the circumstances.
Nick and Arkady work towards their mission but as that begins to unfold so does another faction that can also travel time, the Ofan. While Nick is trying to determine the best path for him to follow and who is telling the truth his heart is melting for Miss Percy who herself is harboring a rather significant secret.
THE RIVER OF NO RETURN is an engrossing novel that marries historical fiction with sci-fi from laced with romance from a cook/author that is an academic. You have to focus and pay attention during this read to catch-all of its nuances. I found myself reading over sections to ensure I had not missed any nuggets. Ridgeway is a wonderful writer and clearly appreciates history, the result is THE RIVER OF NO RETURN which I found out part way through will continue after this installment.