Thursday, January 15, 2015

Book Review: Beyond All Dreams, by Elizabeth Camden

I have the privilege of reviewing books for Bethany House Publishers. Each month we're sent an email with the books releasing in the upcoming month, and we're allowed to choose one book we'd like to review. In exchange for our honest review, we're given the book for free.

I had no idea this review program existed until a couple years ago (and there are many more like it). It was one of those, "Where have you been my whole life?" kind of moments. I'm an avid reader, and I'm especially fond of Bethany House books. I think my love affair with their books began when I read Love Comes Softly for the first time. It's a dream come true to get a free book, just for my opinion!

This month I chose Beyond All Dreams, by Elizabeth Camden. I'm a huge fan of Elizabeth's writing. Every one of her books is full of mystery, intrigue, romance, historical details, and a compelling plot. This is the third book I've read of hers, and each one has highlighted a hero in a powerful position, and a very intelligent, career-minded heroine. Beyond All Dreams, like the other two I read, Against the Tide, and With Every Breath, are set in Washington, D.C., which is a fun setting.

I had high expectations when I picked up this book, and it didn't disappoint. I love the heroine's job as a research librarian in the Library of Congress. It was a unique setting and I truly felt like I was with Anna inside the map room where she worked. The attention to detail was wonderful. I learned a lot about cartography and the history of the Library of Congress. Anna's character was similar to other female characters I've read, but she had a few quirks I really liked, which set her apart. I cheered her on from the first page to the last.

I also loved that the hero was a congressman--another unique career, and one I learned more about while reading this book. Luke Callahan was a great hero! Very masculine and powerful, but filled with enough flaws that he was likeable. He has a family many people can relate to, which also endeared him to my heart. He and Anna were complete opposites, but their relationship worked because of it.

Overall, it was a great book, one I couldn't put down.

* * * *
Anna O’Brien has the perfect job at the illustrious Library of Congress until she stumbles across a baffling mystery of a ship that disappeared at sea. When forces conspire to prevent her from learning the truth, she turns to a dashing congressman for help.

Luke Callahan is one of the most powerful men in congress until his career begins collapsing amidst scandal. When he joins forces with Anna to solve the mystery of the lost ship, he is stunned to find himself falling in love with the down-to-earth librarian. Despite the attraction, strict rules forbid Anna from any romantic entanglement with a member of congress, and each meeting puts her career in jeopardy.

From the gilded halls of the Capitol where powerful men shape the future of the nation to the scholarly archives of the nation’s finest library, Anna and Luke will begin unraveling a mystery larger and more dangerous than ever imagined.

* * * *
A research librarian and associate professor, Elizabeth Camden has a master’s in history from the University of Virginia and a master’s in library science from Indiana University. She has published several articles for academic publications and is the author of four nonfiction history books. Her ongoing fascination with history and love of literature have led her to write inspirational fiction. Elizabeth lives with her husband in central Florida.
Your Turn: What was the last book you read (or are reading)?


  1. Great review! Love her books, too!

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Susan! I love Elizabeth's writing. I hope you get a chance to read this book.

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