Booklook Bloggers Review: The Writing Desk by Rachel Hauck

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Synopsis:

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Wedding Dress comes a new captivating novel of secrets, romance, and two women bound together across time by a shared dream.

Tenley Roth’s first book was a runaway bestseller. Now that her second book is due, she’s locked in fear. Can she repeat her earlier success or is she a fraud who has run out of inspiration?

With pressure mounting from her publisher, Tenley is weighted with writer’s block. But when her estranged mother calls asking Tenley to help her through chemotherapy, she packs up for Florida where she meets handsome furniture designer Jonas Sullivan and discovers the story her heart’s been missing.

A century earlier, another woman wrote at the same desk with hopes and fears of her own. Born during the Gilded Age, Birdie Shehorn is the daughter of the old money Knickerbockers. Under the strict control of her mother, her every move is decided ahead of time, even whom she’ll marry. But Birdie has dreams she doesn’t know how to realize. She wants to tell stories, write novels, make an impact on the world. When she discovers her mother has taken extreme measures to manipulate her future, she must choose between submission and security or forging a brand new way all on her own.

Tenley and Birdie are from two very different worlds, but fate has bound them together in a way time cannot erase.

Facts:

  • This book was published by Zondervan
  • It released on July 11, 2017
  • It’s 405 pages
  • I got it free from Harper Collins BookLook Bloggers program in exchange for a review. (thanks!) My thoughts are my own, as always.
  • Here are a couple places you can buy it or learn more: Goodreads | Amazon | Zondervan

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Cons: 

  • Parts of the book dragged– and I don’t mean the historical fiction sections (are you kidding? I’m in love with historical fiction/ the Gilded Age/ anything remotely like Austen/ Bronte).
  • There were a lot of characters introduced one after another after another and it was difficult to sort out who people were and why they were there. It made sense after a while, but I might’ve liked to be introduced to someone before being thrown into their POV.
  • I found a couple spelling errors, which to be honest, is typical. I’m an editor, after all.

Pros:

  • The Historical Fiction sections. The characters (both old and new, really) were crafted very well and I liked them all. Tenley was cute and sassy and I related with her (being an author) and Birdie was determined and smart, and I loved the detail that went into writing this story. I love the desk and its quirks and its story.
  • I like stories with happy endings.
  • Hidden rooms and libraries and old secrets are definitely my thing.
  • I liked the closure that was given to Tenley and her mom.
  • I like the overwhelming theme of mercy, forgiveness, and loyalty.

My rating: four stars

All in all, if you’re looking for a slow(ish), light read that sometimes sounds like Austen and is relatable and has some darling twists, this is the story for you.

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