When nineteen year old Sarah Shand finds herself in Victorian Era Aberdeenshire, Scotland, she has no idea how she got there. Her last memory is of being at the stone circle on the family farm in the year 2010.
Despite having difficulty coming to terms with her situation, Sarah quickly learns she must keep her true identity a secret.
Still, she feels stifled by the Victorians’ confining social practices, including arranged marriages between wealthy and influential families, confronts them head on and suffers the consequences.
When Sarah realizes she has fallen in love with the handsome Laird of Weetshill, she faces an agonizing decision. Does she try to find her way back to 2010 or remain in the past with the man she loves?
When Sarah’s eyes flickered open, the young girl and her wrecked car were nowhere to be seen. Instead of the asphalt surface of Kendonald Road, Sarah lay sprawled out on a narrow gravel lane.
Sarah’s chest felt like the family’s herd of cows sat on it and she gasped for air. Stones gouged her elbows as she tried to prop herself up.
Using her last ounce of strength, Sarah hauled herself to her feet. Her head throbbed as if it were about to explode, and something wet and sticky ran down the back of her neck. Dirt and blood covered her rugby shirt and jeans, and her trainers were gone. Sharp gravel bit into her stocking feet as she staggered, trying not to fall. Sarah was surprised she was able to stand. She was certain the impact with the car had broken her legs and maybe even her back.
She wiped her hands on her shirt and cried out in pain. Dirt and blood covered her palms, and her knees felt like they’d been scraped with sandpaper. Her chest hurt with every breath, and she wondered if her ribs were broken. Where were the terrified driver and her wrecked car? They seemed to have vanished into the mist.
Sarah barely made out a faint light shining in the distance, and she stumbled toward it, thinking it was the yard light near her father’s barn. She clapped her hands over her ears in an attempt to block out the incessant ringing, but it didn’t work. Taking those pills had been a huge mistake. No matter how badly she wanted to hurt Blair and Niamh, she realized that she didn’t want to die. She couldn’t do that to her family.
Sarah blinked and stared at one of the ghostly trees lining the roadway. The trunk expanded and contracted before her eyes as if it were breathing. A gust of wind rasped through the branches and a sudden cry of a long-eared owl made her jump. Shivering, Sarah crossed her arms and rubbed, but pain shot all the way down to her fingertips, forcing her to stop.
At the narrow stone bridge, she stopped and rested. As she stood there trying to catch her breath, the bridge began to vibrate and black smoke filled the air. A shrill whistle pierced the silence, drowning out the ringing in her ears. Sarah wheeled around and gasped. Off in the distance she saw the tiny speck of a headlight. It grew larger and brighter as the train drew closer and thundered beneath the bridge. Sarah watched the disappearing train and tried to understand what she had seen. There was no railway line near her house, only a flat dirt trail leading to the village.
Soon the smell of freshly cut hay, manure, and farm animals replaced the lingering aroma of the train’s oily coal smoke. If the barn was this close, she was almost home. Drawing closer, she heard the sounds of hooves pawing…
What readers are saying about A Shadow in the Past:
A Shadow in the Past is the ultimate romance fantasy.
A Shadow in the Past is a period drama/time travel combined with romance. The author’s research into life in Victorian Scotland, alongside her study of the horrors of being incarcerated in an asylum, is exceptional. The book is a must-read for me.
A Shadow of the Past brought a unique new voice to time travel.
A Shadow in the Past is an amazing story and the way author has described it, it’s really fantastic. When you read the book, you feel as if all this is happening right in front of you!
And what a great story developed.
A charming time-slip love story with vivid description and authenticity throughout!
A great first novel and I will look forward to reading more books by Melanie Robertson-King in the future.
When Melanie isn’t writing, she’s reading. The writing bug first bit when she was thirteen but the itch subsided and it wasn’t until a number of years later that she put “pen to paper” and began writing again.
Prior to returning to fiction, Melanie wrote articles for various publications for a number of years and has been published in Canada, the U.S., and the U.K.
In addition to writing, her interests include genealogy, photography, and travel, especially Scotland. On one of her trips to the Auld Country, she had the honor of meeting The Princess Royal, Princess Anne.
Blog: Celtic Connexions http://www.melanierobertson-king.com/wp02/
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Melanie-Robertson-King/221018701298979
Twitter: @RobertsoKing https://twitter.com/RobertsoKing
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-shadow-in-the-past-melanie-robertson-king/1112348992?ean=9780983801887
A Shadow in the Past would make a great addition to your Christmas reading list, or someone else’s.