Review: A Desperate Hope by Elizabeth Camden

February 21, 2019

Title: A Desperate Hope
Author: Elizabeth Camden
Publisher: Bethany House
Pages: 352
ISBN:  9780764232107
Publication Date: February 15th, 2019

About the Book:
Eloise Drake's prim demeanor hides the turbulent past she believes is finally behind her. A mathematical genius, she's now a successful accountant for the largest engineering project in 1908 New York. But to her dismay, her new position puts her back in the path of the man responsible for her deepest heartbreak.

Alex Duval is the mayor of a town about to be wiped off the map. The state plans to flood the entire valley where his town sits in order to build a new reservoir, and Alex is stunned to discover the woman he once loved on the team charged with the demolition. With his world crumbling around him, Alex devises a risky plan to save his town--but he needs Eloise's help to succeed.

Alex is determined to win back the woman he thought he'd lost forever, but even their combined ingenuity may not be enough to overcome the odds against them.
My Thoughts:
I have been a long time fan of Elizabeth Camden. Her attention to the historical detail is one that has always impressed me. Her previous stories touch on either well known historical events, like the Chicago Fire in Into the Whirlwind. Or smaller historical issues, like the the opioid epidemic within Against the Tide. The details were phenomenal and made me want to research more it.

A Desperate Hope, Book 3 of the Empire State series, focused on an interesting topic. Imminent domain. Duval Springs is on the brink of destruction. The state of New York feels, that the valley they are in is the perfect spot for a new reservoir for New York. The town fought long and hard. People are weary. But Alex Duval is one determined man. He has fought long and hard for his town and doesn't want to stop till the day the state's deadline for their homes and business to be torn down.

Eloise Drake is a girl who made some bad decisions when she was a teenager. She has been trying her hardest to move past and not go back to those ways. The past decisions guided her in the choices she has made in her present. She is a straight laces lady and isn't about the adventures she reads in her books. That is how she appears at first, but appearances can be deceiving. What you come to see about Eloise, is that she tough on the outside, goes by the rules, but she is a girl who has a desire in her heart. As the story unfolds, you see that even though those memories of her decisions linger, she is a girl who does believe in forgiveness and is grateful to be forgiven and doesn't want to go back down a path that brought her sadness.

I really enjoyed this story. Elizabeth Camden really did a lot of research on the subjects mention in the book. I actually went and looked up where this story could have been borrowed from and I have to say, it was interesting to read up on the history of reservoirs in New York! I loved how when you think the story was going to go one way, it shifted and twisted and kept you guessing. The final few chapters of the book.. I wasn't expecting it!

I love historical fiction and this story really hit the nail on the head. It wove such interesting history, with a fantastically sweet romance, and sprinkled it with a story of forgiveness and redemption, but not only between the character and God, but with the characters self and thoughts. That is sometimes the hardest and I thought it was told in a very touching way.

I also was able to download the audio of this story. I thought it was so well done. The narrator was able to keep a great flow. It was an enjoyable listen.

This was such an interesting story!

4 out of 5

About the Author:
Elizabeth Camden ( is the author of twelve historical novels and two historical novellas and has been honored with both the RITA Award and the Christy Award. With a master's in history and a master's in library science, she is a research librarian by day and scribbles away on her next novel by night. She lives with her husband in Florida.

Thank you to the author, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

1 comment

  1. Awesome review! 👐 ❤️ I love how you explain the forgiveness to self! 👐


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