Friday, January 21, 2011

Book Review: Lady in Waiting

Susan Meissner’s Lady in Waiting (WaterBrook Press, Sept. 7, 2010) chronicles the stories of modern-day Jane Lindsay and 16th century Lady Jane Grey and one ring that bind the women separated by centuries. The book alternates between Jane Lindsay in modern-day Manhattan and Lucy Day, the seamstress for Lady Jane Grey. Jane struggles to trust in God with her marriage and Lucy struggles that England can’t make up its mind whether to be Catholic or Reformed. Meissner’s writing flows comfortably between the two Janes and gives readers a hopeful message for the modern-day Jane.
                            ~Press Release
 Lady in Waiting is a story that follows two women, both named Jane, in two different centuries.  Both ladies find themselves waiting for choices to be made, but in the end discover that they are able to make their own choices.  The modern day Jane is waiting for her husband to make a decision on their marriage, and probably waiting till she makes her own personal revelations.  Jane, from the 16th century, is waiting for others to make decisions about her life.

What first drew me to this book were the facts that I enjoy historical books, and movies.  This book is fiction, but it takes a very real, historical person to tell the story.  Lady Jane Gray.  Unless you have a penchant for Helena Bonham Carter, or period movies, you may not have heard of Lady Jane Gray, who's reign over England lasted only 9 days.

Susan Meissner alternates between the two time periods, in telling the story of these ladies.  The story begins in modern day Manhattan, New York, for several chapters, before taking us back in time, to 16th century England.  The book goes back and forth, in that format; however, the changing of time periods is not confusing in the story telling, and is clearly defined during the chapter breaks.

Meissner tells a compelling story, of both time periods, that draws you in, and has you guessing on what will happen next, asking how the story will end.  You will keep reading to learn how the two stories end, and how they became intersected hundreds of years a part.

I would recommend this book.  You do not need to know the historical details of Lady Jane Grey in order to enjoy the book; and the modern day story balances out the historical story, if you are not a fan of historical fiction.   Basically, this book has a little something for everyone: history, mystery, intrigue and romance.   The copy I read also included a Readers Guide, making this a good book for a book club.

In accordance with FCC Guidelines,  I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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