Visiting another century.... not the summer vacation she had planned.
Those who have read Time and Again and Unclaimed Legacy know that Abby Thomas is a college student on a summer service project with 11-year-old Merri. And they know that the summer is not going the way Abby had expected - but in a good way. For one thing, she meets a very nice guy named John Roberts. And for another, she discovers a strange computer program called Beautiful House that lets her fast-forward and rewind life. Not her own, of course, but those of the people who lived in Merri's old house. And the Old Dears' old house, and... well, any old house.
And since the program worked so well for the Old Dears' family tree project, Abby's college roommate Kate hopes it will help her find out more about her ancestor Ned Greenfield. And Kate's fiance Ryan thinks the program has lucrative commercial potential.
Abby and John reluctantly agree to help Kate, but only on the condition that she and Ryan promise to keep the program a secret, because if it fell into the wrong hands... well, no one wants Big Brother invading their privacy.
The two couples take a trip to the tiny town of Equality, set in the hills of southern Illinois and the breath-taking Shawnee National Forest. According to Kate's research, Ned Greenfield was born there at a place called Hickory Hill.
The mayor, police chief, and townspeople are hospitable and helpful - until the topic of Hickory Hill comes up. They seem determined to keep them away, telling them, "There's nothing there for you to see."
Eventually they find Hickory Hill on their own - both the mansion and the lonely hill it sits upon. Built in 1834, Hickory Hill stands sentinel over Half Moon Salt Mine where the original owner John Granger accumulated his blood-tainted fortune
Series: History Mystery Series #3 | Publisher: Audible | Narrator: Michelle Babb | Length: 7 hrs and 4 mins | Genre: Cozy Contemporary Mystery | Source: Write Brain Books | Ratings: Performance-4 Cups Story-2.5 Cups
Having enjoyed the first two books in the series, I was really looking forward to this one, but, sadly, this one just fell flat.
Here’s what’s going on. When Abby’s college roommate Kate shows up wanting to use the time surfing program Beautiful Houses to trace down her ancestor Ned Greenfield so she can finish her family tree, Abby and John are worried about the program falling into the wrong hands. And when they realize Abby has brought along her fiancé Ryan, they start to wonder if they have probable cause to be worried. Finally giving into Abby, the two couples set off for the town of Equality and soon discover so much more than they bargained when they locate Hickory Hill.
This one was my least favorite book in the series and I had to force myself to pay attention to it.
Kate and Ryan ruined this book. He was an arrogant jerk and no matter what he did or said, Kate acted like he was the best thing since sliced bread. And I hate it when characters act like jerks are their knights in shining armour. I was so over these two before the second chapter started.
I enjoyed seeing Abby and John growing in their relationship, but once again, my enjoyment of them was overshadowed by how much Kate and Ryan annoyed me.
I really missed Merri. While she pops up occasionally, she wasn’t really a part of the plot and it took a lot away from the story. Plus, there were a strings of her story that wasn’t really tied up.
The mystery just seemed to drag on and on without much solidness behind it. Kate is searching for her ancestor but her searches and the time surfing seems to be wrong because the only Ned Greenfield she has found has been a runaway slave. Although even if she has doubts about this Ned being her Ned, the group is eager to discover Ned’s story and soon they discover he has a connection to Charlotte (book one) and her work with the underground railroad.
While I didn’t really care for the plot, Michelle Babb did an amazing job narrating. She really brings every faucet of the characters to life.
Overall, this just didn’t do it for me.
History Mystery Series
3-Every Hill and Mountain