Monday, January 30, 2017

Review: Tender & Immortal (The Trelawneys of Williamsburg #1 & #2) by Anne Meredith @_AnneMeredith


Book Two in the Trelawneys of Williamsburg Series

By Anne Meredith

Author of the bestselling Love’s Timeless Hope

Two decades ago, author Anne Meredith set the romance book world afire with her compelling, intricately plotted, and steamy novel Love’s Timeless Hope (St. Martin’s Press). Affaire de Coeur Magazine called it “A tremendous time travel romance novel…With her debut novel, Anne Meredith shows she is a force to be reckoned with in this sub-genre.” And Rendezvous Magazine proclaimed, “This is a powerfully touching and skillfully written story of love and passion. The characters are endearing and they lingered in my heart for days. A brilliant time travel you won't forget.”

She followed this bestselling novel with Love Across Time – another critically acclaimed time travel romance that readers embraced. Then she disappeared, and her adoring fans wondered what happened to Anne Meredith.

After devoting herself to a full time professional writing career for others, she has now returned to her first love – time travel romance – and her readers are ecstatic! For her latest series – the Trelawneys of Williamsburg – she travels back in time to 18th Century America. Her first novel in the series, TENDER (Haunted Oak Publishing, April 2016), was a sweeping drama of treachery, friendship, and redemption, set upon a backdrop of forbidden love, and ripe with historical detail.

Now, in IMMORTAL (Haunted Oak Publishing, November 15, 2016), Meredith continues the saga of the Trelawneys of Williamsburg – a uniquely American series in which she examines the racial fabric of our nation. In IMMORTAL, readers venture back in time to the year 1775 during the Siege of Boston, when American privateers stood up to the greatest military power in the world, Great Britain.

Her sister remembered nothing of the past. She remembers too much…

Join Marley, an archaeologist and Williamsburg historian, as she discovers the "Lost Sea Captain" in the dig of an 18th-century ship found in a construction site in Norfolk. When Marley goes on a Caribbean vacation with her grandmother Nan – an English woman with a stormy, sorrowful past and many secretsshe nearly drowns in a tropical storm until she's rescued by a handsome sea captain. 

Marley soon learns she's traveled in time and that Hawk and his best friend, Raven, support the American Revolution on their ship, the Adventurer, as privateers in the year 1775. The crew wages valiant fights against Royal Navy warships on the high seas, British Army gunners at the Battle of Great Bridge, and the villainous Lucian Caine, who has returned from the past to settle an old score he has with the Trelawneys.

As shy Marley falls in love with the charming Hawk, he not only brings her out of her shell, but he teaches her to relish life and to overcome fear with courage. Hawk himself is pleasantly surprised at the passion revealed in this fiery young woman. Marley soon comes to realize that Hawk is indeed the Lost Sea Captainbut how can she intervene in his fate without upsetting history?

Come on this fascinating sea journey, and you’ll become engrossed in the tale of Marley and Hawk!

For further information or to request a review copy, please contact Anne Meredith at:

Book Two in the Trelawneys of Williamsburg Series
By Anne Meredith
Haunted Oak Publishing; November 15, 2016
Historical romance/time-travel

My Review:

Immortal is the second book in The Trelawneys of Williamsburg series and picks up sort of where Tender book one left off but with a different sister on a different day. Tender was Rachel’s story and Immortal is Marley’s story. Where Rachel has forgotten everything about their lives together Marley remembers it all. While Rachel was adopted Marley was raised by their grandmother “Nan”.

Marley and Nan are on vacation in the Caribbean when Marley is tossed overboard during a storm and nearly drowns and then wakes up in the 18th century in the arms of Bronson “Hawk” Trelawney; Grey Trelawney’s younger brother. Rachel woke up in 1746 while Marley wakes up in 1775 where she meets Hawk and his best friend and co-captain Rashall “Raven” Adams.

Marley soon learns that Nan has kept a lot of secrets from her over the years like her name. Her name is not really Marley it is Merrilea. She learns why her sisters were kept from her all those years and what really happened to her parents.

When Marley meets Camisha for the first time something seems awful familiar about Camisha but she can’t quiet put her finger on it. Then she learns that Camisha is her sister Rachel’s best friend and that she time traveled as well. Marley comes to love Camisha just as much as Rachel.

Marley also falls head over heels in love with the little brother Bronson “Hawk” too. Hawk brings Marley out of her shy shell and teaches her a thing or two about life. But Miss Marley also teaches Mr. Hawk a few things as well. I loved how strong willed, opinionated and soft hearted Marley is and how she wants to help everyone as well. 
Camisha and Rachel are sisters of the heart while Marley and Rachel are biological sisters. I think that Marley and Camisha have become sisters of the heart as well.

While I loved reading both Tender and Immortal I think I would have to say that I think Immortal is the best one I think. Oh it is too hard of choice to make. But trust me they are both out of this world great and you will love going back in time with Marley or Rachel probably just as much as I did.

I loved how all the stories and everyone’s lives all weave in and out of each other’s in one way or another. It amazes me how anyone can keep all of that apart when writing such an amazing story. Astounding!

Now I would like to know about their other sister Julianna and her story but I would also like to know more about Rachel, Marley, Hawk, Grey, Emily, Camisha and Raven. I would like to see everyone get together for a family reunion and compare stories.  

Book One in the Trelawneys of Williamsburg Series
By Anne Meredith
Haunted Oak Publishing; March 1, 2016
Historical romance/time-travel

Rachel Sheppard is running from a forgotten past. She arrives in Colonial Williamsburg with her best friend, Camisha, and soon learns that the man who raised her has been keeping a dark secret from her for twenty years and blackmailing Camisha. Now, he'll do everything to stop Rachel from revealing his secret. 

The young women seek shelter at Rosalie, an historic estate that was once a tobacco plantation. While a thunderstorm crashes outside that evening, Rachel hears the historical legends of Rosalie, including the story of Grey Trelawney and his young daughter Emily, who died at a fire at Rosalie in the 18th century.

As she dresses for bed, she looks out the window and sees a little girl begging for her help. Could she actually be the ghost of Emily Trelawney? She races after the child into the ruins of the original plantation house, and as lightning strikes, she collapses. She awakens in the arms of Grey Trelawney, the sexy plantation owner who has dark secrets of his own. She learns that secret when she discovers that Camisha, too, has traveled back to the year 1746 - with disastrous results.

Will Rachel ever remember what happened in her childhood that wiped away her most treasured memories? How can a man as contemptible as Grey not only awaken in her the most tender and erotic passions, but also hold the key to restoring those memories? Can she prevent the fire that killed both the man and the child she now loves? How can she keep Camisha safe in a time and place so dangerous for her?

This latest steamy romance from Anne Meredith is a sweeping drama of treachery, friendship, and redemption, set on a backdrop of forbidden love and overflowing with the history of the era. It will take you away, make you think, and leave you hungry for Immortal: Book Two in The Trelawneys of Colonial Williamsburg Time Travel Series by Anne Meredith.

My Review:

Rachel Sheppard learns that her father has been keeping dark secrets from her for twenty years while visiting Colonial Williamsburg with her best friend Camisha. Rachel has no memory of the first six years of her life before she was adopted. While visiting Colonial Williamsburg Rachel and Camisha meet up with a couple that give them a place to stay at Rosalie; the home of the Trelawneys in 1746 that use to be a tobacco plantation. The couple tells them stories about the lives of the Trelawneys and the people who lived at Rosalie in 1746.

Sometime during the night Rachel and Camisha are transported back in time to 1746. Rachel wakes to see a small child, a girl running around out in the storm and goes to help her and then she wakes in the arms of Grey Trelawney.

In the beginning Rachel has no idea that Camisha has traveled back in time with her until she sees a young woman being beaten by the overseer of the Rosalie plantation. Camisha has been beaten so badly that Rachel hardly recognizes her. During her stay at Rosalie in 1746 Rachel starts to remember her past but she only gets bits and pieces of it at a time.

Tender is an unforgettable read one that will stay with me long after I have read the last page. I first fell in love with stories like this when I first read Roots and Gone with the Wind. I loved traveling back in time with Rachel and Camisha and finding out about Rachel’s past and her family.

If I could travel back in time this would be one of the time periods I would love to visit to experience life on a plantation and to see how they lived back then. Anne Meredith did a remarkable job of describing the life and times of the people in the 18th century. Rachel and Camisha are two wonderful people with great big hearts and would do anything to help make someone else’s’ life better and safer not matter the cost to their own.

Would I recommend Tender? Yes definitely to anyone who loves a good story and historical fiction, romance or would maybe like to be transported back in time. 

Interview with Anne Meredith

What inspired you to write Trelawneys of Williamsburg Series?
To Kill a Mockingbird. Now I wish I’d also known about Go Set a Watchman, what I think of as Harper Lee’s first draft of Mockingbird. Tay Hohoff, her editor, was the genius behind that book, and it should be a lesson to any new writer. A great book takes work.

Can you tell us a little bit about the next books in the Trelawneys of Williamsburg Series or what you have planned for the future?

Forever is the third in the series. When I originally wrote Tender (in 1993-94), I planned for a trilogy. Now, my plan is for a series to go all the way up in time to the Civil Rights era – at least if readers are interested. I believe the time in our country is ripe for a different kind of story to be told, and I hope people will respond to these books. The story I’m telling is that people really are all the same; we want life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and that pursuit includes physical and spiritual nourishment as well as love and meaning. My books tell difficult truths on a backdrop of fantasy, and the goal is always unity and healing.

Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in Trelawneys of Williamsburg Series?

Forever will be like Tender and Immortal only in that it’s completely different. For that reason it’s difficult to speak in specifics, but Juliana, the third Miller sister and the heroine, should appeal to any modern woman who loves adventure. Rashall, the joking jester from Immortal is the hero. In Forever, he has undergone a number of jarring challenges to the values his modern mother, Camisha, gave him.

Characters from previous books will visit, and I’m sorry to say that a couple of characters – one major character – will die.

As a reader, I don’t usually care for book series. When I close a romance novel, those characters go off in my mind and live happily ever after in a fantasy world, and having them come into another book isn’t my idea of escapism. But with these books, the underlying murder mystery tying the story together creates a vehicle that justifies their extended presence. These sisters are spread out over three centuries, and they can’t just do an Internet search to find each other, then hop on a plane. So it takes time and planning to enable them to have the smallest interaction with one another – let alone what I have planned for them.

You know I think we all have a favorite author. Who is your favorite author and why?
Pat Conroy. I felt like a family member had passed away when he died last March. I read The Prince of Tides nearly 30 years ago now and wrote him a gushing fan letter because the book felt so real to me – not only for his depiction of the American South that I knew from my Virginian mother, but for a family at the dinner table with a father who abuses them. A few weeks after I sent that letter, I got a nice letter from a literary agent I’d never heard of, saying that Pat Conroy had written to tell her what a wonderful writer I was, and would I like to send her what I was working on? Within a few weeks, she’d sold my first time-travel romance, Love’s Timeless Hope, to St. Martin’s Press. I later learned that this sort of thing was very common to Pat. He was always willing to lend young writers a hand however he could.

If you could time-travel would you travel to the future or the past? Where would you like to go and why would you like to visit this particular time period?
My books came from the vague feeling I’d had for years that I was born in the wrong century. I am inspired when I travel, and I love to travel to historic places. I visited Jefferson, Texas, a small bed and breakfast town in East Texas with a grand and glorious past. I was charmed and inspired by the reality of her past and, especially, the folklore (as only a Texan would be). This experience became Love’s Timeless Hope.
When I took my son and his cousin to Colonial Williamsburg in 1993, the place resonated deeply within me. If I could, I would live there. The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation truly enables time-travel every day for its visitors, “that the future may learn from the past,” (the motto that John D. Rockefeller gave the village when he began its restoration).
Today, American history in our country is woefully neglected. It’s become malleable, rewritten in the hands of some educators and, shockingly, in some U.S. colleges and universities it is not required to study American history to major in history. As philosopher George Santayana said, “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”
So I guess my answer is, I would always go to the past. The future should learn from us. And fortunately, I am able to travel in the past each time I pick up a great historical novel or exceptionally well-written historical romance (which are hard to find now).

Do you have any little fuzzy friends? Like a dog or a cat? Or any pets?
I have six dogs, all rescues. I had four when I moved to New York City a few years ago, and I can tell you it was a heck of a challenge finding an apartment that allowed them all. I didn’t stay there long, though, being a Texan who defines cold as “below 50 degrees.”

My dogs are: Walker, 11 years old, who was my son’s dog until my son moved to New York; Jessie, an almost nine-year-old Aussie who is the smartest dog I’ve ever had and who comes to comfort me when she hears me even sniff when I’m crying; Daisy, her also almost nine-year-old sister who’s the head of squirrel security; Lucy, a three-year-old handful who barks loudly enough to wake the dead and who looks kind of like Rowdy on Scrubs; Scout, two years old, the only dog I’ve ever had who dislikes me (except when she found out I sometimes pass out beef marrow bones, and then she realized I could occasionally be useful); and Baby, an 18-month-old German Shepherd who wandered into my yard one day and stayed when I couldn’t find an owner.

Thanks for inviting me!

Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to visit with us today!

About the Author
Anne Meredith is a Texas native who has been highly praised for her time travel romances. She first grew interested in exploring the concept of time travel during a visit to historic Jefferson, TXa town rich with Texas folklore. She traveled back to the historic legends of this region in her first two novels, Love’s Timeless Hope and Love Across Time, published by St. Martin’s Press. When she later visited Colonial Williamsburg with her son, she was inspired to create the Trelawneys of Williamsburg series. In addition to writing historical fiction, Anne Meredith has spent over 24 years as a professional writer.

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