Saturday, April 1, 2023

IN SPOTLIGHT AND SHADOW by Rachel Scott McDaniel, Reviewed by Rebecca Maney

"For years, I had chased the spotlight, believing that my talent was what gave me worth. I was wrong. I didn't need the world's applause because someone was cheering me on all along. God's love taught me I was never alone . . . "

Gracious, and possibly understandably . . . it had taken Sophie Walters awhile to give up her passion for "center stage" attention. Maybe it had something to do with grieving the loss of what had been so cruelly stolen; filling the void of a broken heart does take considerable effort. Ironically, at present there is a flesh and blood thief behind the curtain, or at least that's what the police believe to be the case, dubbing the no-evidence-left-behind culprit as the "mirage". What about the handsome detective? What does he think?

What in the world? The mystery gift not only whispered one of her life's most perplexing questions, but concealed a genuine emerald necklace cleverly sewn into the hem of a vintage coat. Elise Malvern is stunned. What's even more shocking is literally colliding with her teen heart-throb of yesteryear at a birthday party for his eighty year old grandmother. Elise's note-by-note life is suddenly being interrupted by an award winning country music star bent on speeding up the cadence.

Assuming the author had a limited page count, she creatively managed to pen two amazing stories, cleverly dove-tailing them together in the end, ensuring that the reader may only slightly recall that there had ever been two stories; only just the one.
Add in a little humor (or quite a lot of it actually) . . . "If you looked at me the way you look at waxy processed food, I'd be driving you to the preacher" . . . and the result is a fabulous story!

*I purchased a copy and was under no obligation to provide a positive review.


BackCover Blurb:
A Gem of a Mystery Takes Center Stage

​Walk through Doors to the Past via a new series of historical stories of romance and adventure.

Elise Malvern has a habit of letting people down. Her former boyfriend who hoped she’d be his bride. Her grandfather who hoped she’d take over the family’s auction company. But mostly she’s disappointed herself. What’s the point of pursuing her passion as a violinist, if she is too scared to audition for a seat in the Pittsburgh Symphony? Her internship at the elegant Heinz Hall places her in the wings of the stage, but never on it. By accident, she discovers an old stage prop. Her instincts tell her there’s more to the paste necklace than meets the eye. Whether a good idea or not, she accepts help from a childhood friend, who happens to be country music megastar—Peirson Brooks. Peirson and Elise share a history; one she doesn’t care to repeat. The more involved they become in the mystery, the more things get tangled, including her heart.

A century earlier…
Sophie Walters longs for center stage, her name on the marquee, and all that jazz, but climbing her way into an acting career is more difficult than she imagined. Having spoiled all her chances in Hollywood, she returns to Pittsburgh, accepting an insignificant role in a popular production. She watches her dreams pass by from behind the curtain at the illustrious Loew’s Penn Theatre. She finally gets the coveted spotlight, but not for her talent. No, her surge to fame is all one terrible mistake. Somehow, she’s suspected to be a notorious jewel thief known around Pittsburgh as The Mirage. The man she pleads for help is none other than the man she jilted at the altar five years before, Sterling Monroe. 

Barbour Publishing, 
Available in digital ebook, paperback, and audio:




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