Tuesday, February 13, 2024

WHILE THE CITY SLEEPS by Elizabeth Camden, (The Women of Midtown #1), Reviewed by Rebecca, Winnie, and Paula #ReleaseDay

(The Women of Midtown): 
(Gilded Age Christian Historical Romance Fiction Set in New York City)

" . . . I promise, if you are ever on your deathbed, I will personally deliver as much chocolate biscotti as you like."

Biscotti. Sometimes life and love comes down to the biscotti, and Lieutenant Jonathan Birch certainly knows or has access to the recipe for the absolute best chocolate biscotti . . . wait a minute, was it possible that the man baked it himself? Surely not! Dr. Katherine Schneider's inquiring mind wanted to know; actually she wanted to know everything about the handsome policeman who saw her safely to the subway station each evening, since the New York dental clinic where she worked didn't close until midnight.

Then came the night that changed everything . . . Katherine encountered a patient who gave away a few too many secrets while he was under the influence of nitrous oxide . . . his rambling hadn't made sense at the time, but . . . according to current events, it might make a lot of sense to her detective.

Jonathan is equally grateful and worried about the information that Katherine shares with him. Random bombings are threatening to throw the city's law enforcement community into a frenzy, not knowing if the source can be traced to heightened rival gang activity or political anarchists setting the stage for their demands. If Katherine's identity is ever leaked, her life could be in serious danger. Then there's the matter of Jonathan's family ties . . . Katherine will never forgive him if she discovers what he has been hiding for years. Lives are hanging in the balance . . . while the city sleeps.

An intriguing start to a new series, featuring the nocturnal courtship of two night "owls" who have a lot to learn about life and love as they navigate the danger that is lurking around every turn.

"If God is good and trustworthy in the easy times, you need to trust him during the dark nights of the soul as well . . . you are being ruled by fear. The voice of doubt whispering in your ear is leading you astray. Jonathan has been drawn to a noble calling . . . I don't believe you were put on this earth to interfere with that."
*I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher. The opinions stated above are entirely my own. 3.5 stars


“We all have the freedom to choose what kind of person we want to be, what kind of character to show to the world, and I want to be brave.”

While the City Sleeps is the first book in Elizabeth Camden’s new series, Women of Midtown. It’s a riveting peek into life in New York City in 1913. Camden brings the city to life with courageous, interesting characters and rich historical detail.

Katherine Schneider is a female dentist in a time when that was a rarity. She is independent, capable, and engaging. Jonathan Birch has a hidden past but has worked hard to overcome it and become an admirable police officer. They have had unspoken feelings for each other for a couple of years, and Jonathan has taken it upon himself to protect Katherine. When one of her patients reveals a deadly plot while under the influence of laughing gas, Katherine is plunged into danger.

With plenty of action, suspense, history, and a swoony slow burn romance, this tale has something for everyone. I recommend it to those who enjoy clean and wholesome historical romance fiction. Camden is one of my favorite historical fiction authors, and this book is going straight to my keeper shelf.

*I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Bethany House Publishers. All opinions are my own. 4.5 stars

Jonathan Birch is a policeman in 1913 New York City working the night beat. “We all have the freedom to choose what kind of person we want to be, what kind of character to show to the world, and I want to be brave.” Fleeing his shrouded past, Jonathan changes his life to one of respectability and service. He escorts Dr. Katherine Schneider home every night at midnight from her dental clinic in Times Square. When she overhears strange things from a patient under anesthesia, they don’t make sense until the city is rocked by several bombs. 

Now, with her life in danger, Jonathan goes into protective mode and what they encounter is not without risks.
The characters are complex and reveal motivations that produce conflict to make a very interesting and powerful plot. 

Jonathan and Katherine show spiritual growth and learn to be more open, honest and forgiving,
With danger, intrigue, rivalries and a budding romance, this novel delves into the nightlife of New York City in 1913.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House on behalf of the author. I was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are mine alone.* 5 stars and a strong faith thread

BackCover Blurb:
Amid the hushed city, two hearts must navigate danger and deception, bound by a love that outshines the stars.

Katherine Schneider's life as a dentist in 1913 New York is upended when a patient reveals details of a deadly plot while under the influence of laughing gas. As she is plunged into danger, she seeks help from the dashing Lieutenant Jonathan Birch, a police officer she has long admired from afar.

Jonathan has harbored powerful feelings toward Katherine for years but never acted on them, knowing his dark history is something she could never abide. Now, with her safety on the line, he works alongside her through the nights as they unravel the criminal conspiracy that threatens her . . . even as he keeps his deepest secrets hidden at all costs.

Bethany House Publishing, February, 2024
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